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The Lab @ Cuyahoga County Elevates Entrepreneurship and Innovation


Media contact: Devyn Giannetti: (216) 443-8393; dgiannetti@cuyahogacounty.us

Local Entrepreneurs and Businesses Provided with Vital Resources to Turn Product Ideas into Successful Launch

CUYAHOGA COUNTY, OH – Cuyahoga County announced today the launch of The Lab @ Cuyahoga County, a new program run by the Office of Innovation & Performance. The Lab @ Cuyahoga County connects local entrepreneurs and businesses with public sector partners to test new ideas, products, or services in a real-world environment for 12 to 16 weeks. Transforming the County into a living lab for the latest innovations, local entrepreneurs and businesses will be provided with the subject matter expertise, data, and customer feedback needed to make the jump from product ideation and validation to product launch.

“Cuyahoga County is a government leader in innovation and entrepreneurship,” said County Executive Armond Budish. “I’m excited that this program will further a culture of innovation within public sector organizations and provide the support needed to empower local companies to grow.”

The Lab @ Cuyahoga County will offer two tracks to entrepreneurs and businesses based on varying needs and stages of development. The Product Ideation Track will support those in the formation stage who need additional information to develop a product or service. The public sector partner will provide access to subject matter experts who will help answer questions and lay the foundation for product development.

The Product Validation Track supports entrepreneurs and businesses in the validation stage that need to test their product or service before launch. The public sector partner may help connect participants with the people, technology infrastructure and facilities that will allow them to test their product in a real-world setting, providing the feedback needed to validate or pivot a product before launch.

Joining Cuyahoga County in The Lab are Cleveland Metroparks, the Cuyahoga County Public Library and the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency. These organizations will also be transforming into potential test bed locations for local businesses and entrepreneurs.

“Access to capital, mentoring and customers are key needs for companies to grow,”
said Chief Innovation & Performance Officer, Catherine Tkachyk. “Many of the accelerator programs throughout the County provide access to capital and mentoring. The Lab @ Cuyahoga County will provide local companies with the ability to prove the product or service works in a real-world environment, increasing the likelihood of a successful launch.”

Applications for The Lab @ Cuyahoga County open January 6, 2020 and close February 7 at 12 p.m. EST. The cohort selection and announcement will take place in March 2020, with the pilot period taking place from April to July. The Lab Application Page contains detailed information on application criteria, application assessment guidelines and information on future office hours.