State grant accelerates innovation, entrepreneurship at Berkeley

December 15, 2017
By: Public Affairs
Karen Taylor
Karen Taylor of Onederful pitching during SkyDeck's Fall 2017 Demo Day. Onederful is a software startup that provides real-time patient eligibility checks for dental offices. (Photo by Marla Aufmut)

A $2.2 million state grant has helped UC Berkeley, already a global hub for innovation, to expand its entrepreneurship activities with new facilities, courses and programs, according to an early look at results.

“The funding adds fuel to the already simmering passion and drive of the entrepreneurial spirit at Cal by funding programs and infrastructure,” says Carol Mimura, assistant vice chancellor for intellectual property and industry research alliances. “Just as importantly, it has forged alliances by uniting people — in units across campus  — in a common cause to streamline entrepreneurship training, startup incubation and acceleration.”

The grant came via Assembly Bill 2664, recognizing the University of California’s instrumental role in boosting the state economy by launching and growing some of California’s most successful industries, including aerospace, biotech, computers and digital media. A recent analysis shows that 300 startups coming from Berkeley alone have raised $4.7 billion in funding.

In total, California provided $22 million across the UC system, which has so far supported more than 500 new startups and existing companies, helped launch at least 47 new products and enabled companies to attract $3.7 million in additional investments.

At Berkeley, the grant has allowed the campus to engage 653 startup teams and 2,201 entrepreneurs. Supported entrepreneurship and innovation groups include the Berkeley-Haas Entrepreneurship Program, the Blum Center for Developing Economies, CITRIS Foundry, Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation, LAUNCH, the NSF I-Corps Bay Area Node, the Office of Intellectual Property & Industry Research Alliances, SkyDeck, Startup @ Berkeley Law, the Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology and affiliated programs.