Connecting Upstate NY to Silicon Valley, new startup accelerator center coming to Rochester


(JOEL SAGET/AFP via Getty Images)

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — A San Francisco-based company that focuses on startups, tech products and services announced it will be opening a facility in Rochester, Monroe County Executive Adam Bello announced Tuesday.

Officials say MARL Accelerator will invest $2 million in Monroe County over the next three years, and comes with $150,000 in support from County of Monroe Industrial Development Agency (COMIDA). Officials say the venture studio to open in Rochester will assist technical startups.

“At MARL, our goal is to connect upstate New York to Silicon Valley,” said Amir Khan, MARL Accelerator managing partner. “We have discovered ample talent here and we see the beginning on new Silicon Valley in Northeast. We plan to provide upstate New York a startup ecosystem with access to top-level mentors, venture capitalists, corporate partners and customers based here in Silicon Valley to help startups succeed.”

“Monroe County was named as the top area in the country best positioned to jump-start our nation’s innovation economy,” said Monroe County Executive Adam Bello. “MARL 5G’s placement of a new start-up center here underscores the entrepreneurial climate and opportunities we offer.”

Bello says COMIDA’s $150,000 commitment is a “sound investment in our economic future.”

Officials say the MARL Fund has the capital capacity to invest in up to 30 startups every year for three years at a minimum, adding that the company plans to invest $2 million into Rochester within three years of the new center opening, potentially creating 200-300 new jobs in that timeframe.

According to a press release from Bello’s office Tuesday, MARL will be offering a 12-week, hands-on mentorship for each startup, and this program will include guidance from pre-seed fundraising, branding and investor readiness, and more.

MARL Accelerator will also provide startups with $550,000 in various service credits for cloud services, legal, banking, marketing, branding and technology services. The investment can give technical startups a 10 to 12 months runway.

“We have a real opportunity to grow the tech business landscape in Monroe County and the upstate region. Upstate New York has great community colleges and universities that are known to produce great tech talents; MARL expansion can help to retain those talents in the region, which has a potential of creating a huge innovation hub over the next 3-5 years,” added Prakash Goswami, Managing Partner at MARL Accelerator.

For more information about the program, criteria required to apply, or to apply to be
part of the fall 2021 or spring 2022 Rochester Cohort, visit this website.

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