EVOLVE Business and Professional Magazine May 2019 - Page 19

Director of Technology Transfer and Research Park Initiatives at The John Mica Engineering and Aerospace Innovation Complex at Embry-Riddle Research Park, also known as the MicaPlex, TechFit was able to access needed laboratory and manufacturing space for their growing international company, Stephanie Miller, Executive through the ERAU incubation Director of Technology program. Transfer and Research Park “TechFit was a collaboration Initiatives, provides a tour of the expansive facility at The between a lot of people in town, John Mica Engineering and including the two incubators to bring Aerospace Innovation Complex them here,” said Miller. “The Soft at Embry-Riddle Research Landing program helped them out Park. with the business side of it. Over here we have tons of laboratory space, so it worked out well,” she said. Collaborations between the programs isn’t uncommon, although Miller and Garzon-Bernal often simply send a business or company over to the other should they find that it doesn’t fit their respective programs. The experience working with both incubators has been a net positive for Mauricio Toro, CEO of TechFit. “Since we decided to start our USA adventure we knew chemistry and being welcome in a technological ecosystem would be key. Last February when we came to Daytona for the first time we felt that the UCF incubator and ERAU with the MicaPlex were very well aligned with what we were looking for,” said Toro. “We haven’t been let down! ERAU has been a great source of talent, and the researchers and professors have been very open to our ideas and collaboration initiatives. Connie in the UCF incubator has been our champion. She has opened so many doors for us in Volusia and adjoining counties. It is very helpful to have people who understand the ecosystem and are cheering you on and eliminating barriers,” he said. The UCF incubator provides support, primarily for a technology, product or service with a high impact potential, and has been a solid launch pad for the 2016 startup Aerosapien Technologies. Comprised of several ERAU graduates, Aerosapien Technologies provides engineering services, design analysis, and helps industries to manufacture drones, among other products. Engineers from the startup utilize the “Make It Lab” at UCF to create functioning prototypes of their products, while their software and technology team, also housed in office space on site, handles the backend work. Working with Bernal at the incubator, Aerosapien has landed contracts with major companies like Boeing and General Electric. “The Make It Lab is a great start for anyone who is in the incubator,” said Integration Engineer, Chandrahouli Vadlamudi. “It helped out with the equipment and tools. This gave us a lot of potential and (increased our) confidence level to accept more projects from clients,” he said. Just minutes away, the ERAU MicaPlex offers an expansive field Our students are tomorrow’s business leaders. Find out more at: DaytonaState.edu MAY 2019 | 19 |