Keywords: economic development, business accelerator, business incubator, service provider, regional networking, systems of innovation, Technology to Management, T2M, economic stimulation
The role of service providers in establishing networked regional business accelerators in Utah
Whereas business incubator facilities focus resources on 'hatching' new technology-based businesses, the equally substantial need for maturing existing businesses in their formative years has received less attention. Many economic regions are recognising the importance of providing continued business development support after a new company is established. Business accelerators have been conceived as a means to support businesses as they meet the challenges of sustaining growth and realising market potential. Recently, one such accelerator known as Technology to Management, or T2M, has been established in the Intermountain West of the USA. T2M provides content knowledge, access to financing and networking support to maturing companies. Whilst T2M is composed of representatives from business, government and academe, the catalysts for the program are the service provider organisations, including investment banks, insurance providers, accountants and law firms. Recently, T2M has begun an aggressive expansion program through which it will coordinate a regional network of accelerators.