City of Mesa News Article
Grand opening for LAUNCHPOINT, Mesa Technology Accelerator
By: Kevin Christopher
12/18/13 5:25 PM

Dec. 18, 2013
Public Information & Communications
Contact: Steve Wright
Tel. 480-644-2069  
Mesa, AZ – It is officially “open for business” and offers a unique approach to grow businesses and create jobs.  A grand opening has been held for LAUNCHPOINT, Mesa Technology Accelerator.  The City of Mesa and Arizona State University (ASU) have formed a partnership to create LAUNCHPOINT on the ASU Polytechnic campus.  The mission of the accelerator is to stimulate the establishment and growth of small technology-based companies and other businesses in the east valley.
“Mesa’s economic development motto is ‘facilitate, don’t regulate’ and LAUNCHPOINT is one way we are facilitating the growth of technology companies,” Mayor Scott Smith said. “Cities are building the new American economy and partnering with universities, like ASU, is the smart way to foster innovation and accelerate the success of growing businesses.”
Creation of a business accelerator, to assist business growth and provide economic vitality, is a major step towards achieving the goal of the Mesa Gateway Strategic Development Plan, adopted by Mesa City Council, to create a regional employment center.
"Many great global companies started out as small businesses in someone's garage. LAUNCHPOINT is Mesa's garage. It is our community's investment in innovative entrepreneurship and a place where the knowledge workforce gravitates.  With the help of ASU Polytechnic, the businesses that develop here will help us meet our goal of 100,000 high wage jobs," District 6 Councilmember Scott Somers said.
The City will provide funding and staffing to operate LAUNCHPOINT and recruit businesses to participate in the program. ASU will provide office and meeting space for accelerator businesses and facilitate partnerships between those businesses and the College of Technology and Innovation at ASU Polytechnic.
"Innovation and entrepreneurism are hallmarks of ASU, and we are committed to the success of entrepreneurs and their new ventures both within the university and in the community," ASU President Michael M. Crow said. "Our partnership with the City of Mesa and the opening of LAUNCHPOINT brings valuable new-business resources to our community that will help accelerate the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the East Valley."
LAUNCHPOINT has its first client, TechItEzee, a mobile gadget (phones & tablets) company that designs software and hardware in Mesa and manufactures the hardware in China. 
LAUNCHPOINT is also staging a contest to accept applications for its onsite/offsite program until Feb. 27.  Qualified applicants will be given an opportunity to “pitch” their business to a panel comprised of local business leaders and investors.  The first 10 applications that are accepted into the program will each receive a promotional package valued at $10,000.

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