The Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology (OIST) and Inspire Corporation (INSPiRE) today announced a new framework agreement to cultivate prospective entrepreneurs and startups from OIST.
As part of the agreement, INSPiRE will offer tailored mentoring support to selected agriculture, forestry, fisheries, strockraising, food & beverage and environment technology startups emerging from OIST research labs to strengthen their product, service, and market fit and customer traction. Participating startups will also have the opportunity to pitch to potential business partners and investors in INSPiRE’s network, including access to the recently established “INSPiRE Mutualistic Symbiosis Fund”.
“OIST is focused on creating an environment in Okinawa where startups can launch and thrive,” says Peter Gruss, President and CEO of OIST. “ Joining forces with INSPiRE to motivate and mentor the next generation of entrepreneurial founders complements our broader efforts to build a vibrant startup ecosystem that will contribute to the island's self-sustaining economic development.”
“INSPiRE is pleased to provide a “run-together” support to entrepreneurs from OIST, an institution that attracts outstanding researchers with diverse expertise from around the world and offers an environment conducive to innovation,” says Ryosuke Takatsuki, President and CEO of INSPiRE. “We believe that ‘run-together’ style business development support from an industrial and business perspective such as a support to build business model as well as marketing plan and capital policy is essential to the success of academic entrepreneurship. We are committed to contributing to the creation of a mutualistic-symbiotic ecosystem in Okinawa around OIST by leveraging our 20+ year expertise and mutualistic-symbiosis network of multi-layered partiesin supporting both entrepreneurs and enterprise to bring more innovation to the world.”
Administered by the OIST Technology Development & Innovation Center (TDIC), the agreement enables the university to expand its suite of programs, networks and resources to move technologies from the lab to where they are needed most.
“The OIST startup ecosystem includes an accelerator program, incubator facility, entrepreneurship educational courses, internships for business students, and a global network of venture capital funds, including the OIST-Lifetime Ventures Fund,” says Gil Granot-Mayer, Executive Vice President for Technology Development and Innovation at OIST. “These important elements come together to create an innovation platform with network effects that make it more than the sum of its parts. We are very excited to add INSPiRE and the INSPiRE network to our growing innovation platform.”
The Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology (OIST) is an international graduate university which conducts outstanding education and research in science and technology, with global recognition. A truly interdisciplinary research environment with world-class facilities, there are no barriers between scientific fields and scientists are encouraged to cross over and collaborate in new branches of knowledge.
The Technology Development and Innovation Center (TDIC) at OIST utilizes and leverages the unique resources of the university to promote innovation, entrepreneurship, and the development of science into practical and commercial applications that have social and economic benefits locally and across the globe.
Believing in “make the world amazing” through doing what others don’t, Inspire Corporation is a company whose main business is a new business development itself, where it fully ‘runs-together’ with entrepreneurs who are working to realize innovation, and provides all its resources / expertise necessary to lead them to success in a timely and appropriate manner.