At a recent TechCelerator Pitch Contest in Erie, Michael Paul & Michael Gibilterra from HPG Industries, who developed a patent-pending technology which allows for the 3D printing of custom, flexible parts on demand. Hunter Klobucar and Tyler Waltenbaugh from Fish Gods, a company that is leading an environmental movement among fishing enthusiasts.

Eric Kennahan, CEO of Magnitude Instruments, which makes high-sensitivity, low-noise transient absorption spectrometer, credits TechCelerator for helping him launch from an innovation created in a Penn State lab into a startup based in Innovation Park. 

“Before TechCelerator, we didn’t even know where to begin or what questions to ask,” he says. “After the 10 weeks, we at least knew what we didn’t know, but we had made the contacts, and a plan for moving forward."

"Without Techcelerator, we would not have started Magnitude Instruments.”

At the end of the ten weeks covering topics like Business Models, Customer Development, Basic Financials and Funding Options, successful participants make a graduation pitch presentation to a panel of local professionals and potential investors with the opportunity to win up to $10,000 to help get their business started. They come away from the experience with a viable business model, networking contacts, and the confidence that comes from knowing if it’s the right time to move forward with their business concept.

Through Ben Franklin Technology Partners’ regional offices, the TechCelerator program is offered in various locations around Pennsylvania.

Upcoming TechCelerator Opportunities

Dubois: The next big opportunity for entrepreneurs is coming soon. Partnering with Penn State DuBois and the North Central PA LaunchBox, Ben Franklin’s TechCelerator @DuBois is inviting local entrepreneurs, graduate students, professors and university researchers to participate in the next 10-Week Business Startup Boot Camp. Weekly sessions will run on Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. from Jan. 15, 2020, until March 19, 2020. A graduation “pitch” event will enable the winning team to receive up to $10,000 in seed funding to help get their business from startup to up and running. Space is limited. For more information contact John Siggins at 814-865-2879 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

State College: TechCelerator at State College just wrapped up their fall session and hosted their pitch contest at the beginning of December. To find out more about TechCelerator, or to register for their next session of classes, you can go to their website here