IdeaFunding Celebrates 25 Years with $25,000 in Prizes at TENWEST

IdeaFunding, Southern Arizona's largest and longest entrepreneurial conference and pitch competition, is back and is celebrating its 25th anniversary. This year the pitch competition is providing $25,000 in prizes at the TENWEST Festival on November 3, 2022. The University of Arizona Center for Innovation (UACI) is proud to be a co-host with Startup Tucson for the TENWEST Festival.

The competition will consist of multiple rounds over the course of ten weeks leading up to the mainstage event at TENWEST. With each round and down select participants of the competition receive feedback and mentorship from UACI to perfect their pitch as well as expand their understanding of how to promote their business concept and the solution it provides. Applications are open now and close August 24, 2022. Don't miss this opportunity to gain personalized feedback and mentoring provided by UACI and win cash prizes.


University of Arizona Center for Innovation Named Finalist for Copper Cactus Awards

The University of Arizona Center for Innovation (UACI) has been named a finalist for the 2022 Tucson Metro Chamber Copper Cactus Awards presented by Wells Fargo. UACI is a finalist for the Nextrio Innovation category. This award honors progressive businesses who are catalysts for innovation in all its forms, from professional culture to products and services. UACI supports science and technology startups from across the region through Sponsored Launch and across the globe through the Global Advantage Soft-Landings program.


Longan Vision & EcoBloc Highlighted in the Arizona Daily Star

Two University of Arizona Center for Innovation (UACI) Soft-Landing Canadian delegation companies were featured in the Arizona Daily Star. EcoBloc and Longan Vision discuss their accomplishments since starting their journey with UACI as well as the strategic location Tucson offers international businesses. Since participating in the UACI program, Longan Vision has established a U.S. operation here at the UA Tech Park and EcoBloc was admitted to the TechStars Farm to Fork Accelerator.


University of Arizona Center for Innovation International Award Finalist

The University of Arizona Center for Innovation (UACI) is honored to be representing the USA on the international stage as one out of 10 finalists for the International Association of Science Parks and Areas of Innovation (IASP) Inspiring Solutions Awards. The UACI Sponsored Launch Program is being recognized as an Inspiring Solution finalist for its impact on the local community and the startup ecosystem. The Sponsored Launch program provides a platform for organizations and municipalities to invest in small businesses sponsoring the cost of their business development support for one full year at UACI.


Survey for Pima County Economic Development

Are you currently involved in the business community of Pima County? Pima County is in the process of developing an Economic Development Strategy for your region, and representatives want to hear your thoughts on the opportunities and challenges you see in the Pima County economic landscape through a survey. The survey will take approximately 10 minutes of your time. The responses received will be fully confidential and anonymous. The survey will be open until August 31, 2022.


Global Advantage Soft-Landings Program named University Economic Development Association Award Finalist

The University of Arizona Center for Innovation (UACI) has been named a finalist for the University Economic Development Association (UEDA) Awards of Excellence in the Innovation category for the Global Advantage Soft-Landings program. The program provides international startups with the necessary accommodations for smooth entry to the United States. UEDA Awards of Excellence finalists come from across the nation and represent the top university-based economic development initiatives in the country.


Solar Prize Launches Round 6, $4.1M in Prizes

The American-Made Solar Prize recently launched the sixth round of the competition, offering a total of $4.1 million to teams of creative individuals and entrepreneurs who are ready to advance conceptual solar solutions toward product realities. Through three contests, participants compete for progressively larger cash and voucher prizes, including an optional competition and prize focused on justice, equity, diversity and inclusion (JEDI). The University of Arizona Center for Innovation (UACI) is a Power Connector, meaning it was specifically chosen by the U.S. Department of Energy to mentor and support competition teams. To learn more about the opportunity, book a time to meet with UACI staff.


Reglagene on NPR Tech Nation Radio

Reglagene CEO, Richard Austin, was interviewed by Dr. Moira Gunn for an episode of Tech Nation Radio. In the interview they discuss the process of how to choose a medicine to advance into clinical trials for brain cancer. Reglagene is a biotech firm that fights cancer by leveraging Quadruplex Master Switch Technology to create new medicines that regulate gene expression. Reglagene has utilized the UArizona entrepreneurial ecosystem to move the technology that is based from UArizona research into the marketplace. Reglagene first worked with Tech Launch Arizona to commercialize their technology and joined the UA Center for Innovation to develop their business utilizing our 27-point roadmap.


SBIR NASA Ignite Solicitation Opens

Great news for the Space City of the Southwest, the SBIR NASA Ignite Solicitation is open through September 1, 2022. This funding opportunity is a way for small businesses that have a commercially viable technology idea to use NASA as a propellant on their path towards commercial success. The limited number of topic areas of interest for this solicitation have been specifically selected for their commercial relevance.


Startup Spotlight: Copperhead Aeronautics

Copperhead Aeronautics is an aerospace startup focusing on creating vertical lift technology that is more energy efficient than current rotors or fixed pitch propellers. This increased efficiency translates to an increased aircraft payload while reducing noise and increasing top speed. Copperhead Aeronautics uses the latest research and materials in order to produce previously impossible drones and aircrafts.

September 16

Apply for DOE Funding to Commercialize Innovative Solar Technologies

Small businesses and large for-profit entities are encouraged to apply for $27 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Energy to advance American manufacturing of solar energy technologies. The Solar Manufacturing Incubator funding opportunity seeks research, development and demonstration projects that reduce solar energy costs while developing next-generation technologies and boosting manufacturing. Learn more about the funding opportunity by signing up for an informational webinars in August and submit a mandatory letter of intent by September 16, 2022.

September 23

Tucson Metro Chamber Copper Cactus Awards

Join Tucson Metro Chamber to mark another year of innovation, business growth and social impact in Southern Arizona. This year's Copper Cactus Awards will be hosted at the Tucson Convention Center on September 23, 2022 from 5-9 PM. It's going to be a fabulous night of community celebration.

October 19

Southern Arizona Tech + Business Expo

The Arizona Technology Council (AZTC) and the Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) proudly present the Tenth Annual Arizona Tech + Business Expo on October 19, 2022 from 12-6 PM at the Tucson Convention Center. Network in person with over 400 business and tech leaders and learn what's new and trending across Southern Arizona's tech industries including transportation, automation, optics, biotech, mining, aerospace, defense, logistics, robotics, space exploration, IT and more.

November 1-5

TENWEST Impact Festival Including IdeaFunding

TENWEST Impact Festival in Tucson, Arizona helps the curious and the impassioned solve the great economic, social, cultural and environmental challenges facing our communities. Through Immersive exhibitions, talks and interactive experiences, national experts and local heroes will inspire the ideas and facilitate the connections that will empower us to act. TENEST Festival is presented by the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and co-lead by Startup Tucson and the University of Arizona Center for Innovation.

Southern Arizona's largest and longest entrepreneurial conference and pitch competition, is back and is celebrating its 25th anniversary with $25,000 in prizes. Join co-leads Startup Tucson and the University of Arizona Center for Innovation for the main stage portion of the competition will take place at the TENWEST Impact Festival on November 3, 2022.

November 8

2022 Governor's Celebration of Innovation

Join Arizona Technology Council in partnership with the Arizona Commerce Authority to honor technology leaders and innovators from across the state with the Governor's Celebration of Innovation Awards on November 8, 2022 from 4-8:30PM at the Phoenix Convention Center. The event will consist of a Tech Showcase followed by a theatre-style awards program.


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The University of Arizona Center for Innovation (UACI) is a key component of Tech Parks Arizona which brings together university, industry and community to advance technology innovation. UACI is the University of Arizona's startup incubator network with outposts across the Southern Arizona region with a mission to grow scalable startup ventures that fuel the Arizona ecosystem.