Transforming industries from health care to renewable energy, creating jobs, and revitalizing our community

Transforming industries from health care to renewable energy, creating jobs, and revitalizing our community

The University’s business incubator, NextCorps, is a catalyst for the region’s most innovative start-up companies.

Located on the sixth floor of the historic Sibley Square in downtown Rochester, NextCorps is one of the cornerstones of the revitalization of downtown Rochester, supporting the most creative people, ideas, and technologies that are transforming industries from health care to renewable energy, creating jobs, and revitalizing our community.

NextCorps brings together world-class academic and industry ideas and entrepreneurs, providing them with resources and expertise to grow and succeed. The facility is home to an array of software, biomedical, health care, photonics, and electronics ventures, and can accommodate as many as 40 companies. A recent program launched in 2020 is helping to fund and support climate technology start-ups from prototype to production. NextCorps provides mentoring, legal, financial, accounting, networking, business plan development, and marketing services. The 40,000-square-foot facility includes a signature co-working space, wet labs for biotech companies, a fully-equipped prototyping lab, conference rooms, a roof deck overlooking the Rochester skyline, auditorium, and common areas, including a kitchen/cafeteria and game room.

“When we built this facility, we tried to think of everything an entrepreneur would need, so all they have to do is show up and start working,” says James S. Senall, president of NextCorps. “We know that bringing entrepreneurs together under one roof helps increase the odds of success. This entire space is designed to foster interaction and drive ‘creative collisions’ that can create connections and partnerships that lead to growth.”

Some companies have found their way to NextCorps from distant locales, while others started at the University of Rochester, including LighTopTech, which builds optical instruments that enable noninvasive imaging in medical and industrial fields. LighTopTech was founded by Jannick Rolland, the Brian J. Thompson Professor of Optical Engineering at the Institute of Optics, and Cristina Canavesi, who earned her PhD in optics from the institute, as well as a master’s degree in technical entrepreneurship and management and an MBA from the Simon Business School.

The name NextCorps reflects Rochester’s history of reinventing itself to respond to new economic opportunities and meeting the challenge of what comes next. Corps is an acknowledgement that innovation and economic transformation can only be accomplished by dedicated group of individuals working collaboratively and with a shared vision to harness new ideas for growth.

In addition to high tech incubation and acceleration services, NextCorps also runs a number of other programs supporting business growth, including:

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