NYSERDA Supports Business and Technology Growth Essentials

The Path to Commercialization: Growth Essentials, Technology Readiness, Business Growth

There are four Growth Essentials on the Path to Commercialization, Capital; Talent; Market, Technology and Manufacturing; and Network. Each is critical to your success in clean energy innovation. And each is supported by specific NYSERDA program offerings.

Not sure where you fall along the Path?

Capital Insert GraphicGrowth Essential: Capital

We support mentoring programs that help you navigate the funding challenge, learn to identify funding sources appropriate to each stage in your company’s growth and find out what you need to do to secure financial backing. We facilitate networking programs, such as Green Capital EmpireLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page., and valuable partnerships where you can connect with grant makers, venture capitalists and angel investors, meet peers and even potential customers.

You can always explore the NYSERDA Funding Opportunities currently available.

Talent Insert GraphicGrowth Essential: Talent

The Cleantech Executives program creates a transition path aimed at introducing experienced executives and entrepreneurs to opportunities in the clean energy industry in New York State. Program graduates get connected to early-stage clean energy technology companies or business opportunities, fostering statewide cleantech growth in jobs and revenue.

  • Executed by Skidmore College, the New York Executive Clean Energy Leadership ProgramLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. (NY EXCEL) - competitively selects entrepreneurs and executives to learn about the markets, financing models, permitting requirements, technology solutions, and other unique aspects of the cleantech industry. NY EXCEL helps participants build networks and provides direct, one-on-one mentoring, ultimately resulting in new cleantech businesses in New York State poised for success. View the NY EXCEL Flyer [PDF]

Other mentoring programs include the Entrepreneurs-in-ResidenceLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. (EIR) program at High Tech Rochester, Pre-seed WorkshopsLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page., and six clean energy business incubators. Strategically located in cleantech clusters across the State, business mentors at each incubator provide business, technical, financial, manufacturing, marketing and strategic know-how to get early stage companies off the ground.

Featured Article

Transforming Entrepreneurial Innovation Into Business Success

By connecting early-stage technology companies with experienced entrepreneur mentors, NYSERDA’s Entrepreneurs-In-Residence Program is helping these startups accelerate their business in the cleantech economy. (Read more)

Entrepreneurs in Residence Program

Seasoned executives share experience, skills and acquired knowledge with early-stage companies. EIRs guide early-stage companies through specific projects and issues, such as staffing for growth, budget management, resource planning, strategic partnering and board management. An EIR has a strong background in executive-level management at technology-based companies.

The EIR program is facilitated and managed by High Tech Rochester for companies receiving NYSERDA funding or participating in other NYSERDA programs. High Tech Rochester works with each company to understand its specific needs and provides a pool of qualified EIRs who can help.

Learn more about the Entrepreneurs-in-Residence ProgramLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page.

Clean Energy Incubators Map

Clean Energy Incubators

Six business incubators are strategically located in the heart of a cleantech cluster for easy access to market, talent and technology support. In just over two years, more than 111 clients in these incubators raised almost $88 million in private funds, introducing 89 new cleantech products to market, creating 264 jobs and retaining 318 existing jobs.

Incubator tenants have ready access to a network of mentors and service providers who understand the start-up and early stage company experience. Incubators can help you develop your business plan and financial model, provide legal and tax services, offer sales and marketing assistance and much more.

Incubators affiliated with world-class universities connect you with faculty, development and testing labs, student interns and other resources. You benefit from networking events, workshops and skills enhancement boot camps. Every day, you can share experiences, challenges, solutions and contacts with fellow residents. Most offer low-cost office space, as well as virtual incubator services.

iCLEAN at the College of Nanoscale Science & Engineering (CNSE)Link opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. in Albany

The iCLEAN incubator serves emerging companies developing clean energy technologies that are enabled by nanotechnology. Sectors include advanced photovoltaics, biomass, energy efficiency, energy storage, environmental sensors, smart grid, wind and more. iCLEAN is located in New York’s “Tech Valley,” which encompasses the Capital Region, Hudson Valley, Mohawk Valley and parts of the North Country. CNSE’s award from NYSERDA was matched by an additional $1.5 million in private investment. The iCLEAN program expects to incubate 25 successful companies, with the potential for creating 125 jobs and investing nearly $125 million into the regional economy.

Long Island High Technology Incubator, Inc. at Stony Brook UniversityLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. in Stony Brook

LIHTI is a non-profit organization and one of the nation’s top-rated mixed-technology high-tech incubators, helping young Long Island companies grow through a variety of support resources and services. It has successfully graduated more than 40 companies since its founding in 1992. These companies have contributed more than $2.5 billion to the national economy and have created jobs for more than 500 employees. NYSERDA’s funding for LIHTI helps accelerate the successful development of early-stage, clean energy technology companies on Long Island.

NYC Accelerator for a Clean and Renewable Economy (ACRE) at the Polytechnic Institute of New York University (NYU-Poly)Link opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. in Manhattan

Tenants at NYU-Poly’s NYC ACRE create technologies to improve the urban environment. In the heart of Manhattan’s SoHo district, they are developing solutions for energy storage, building systems, sustainable architecture and design, green roofs, advanced metering, transportation systems, lighting, water management, urban food systems, waste-to-energy and much more.

Venture Creations at the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT)Link opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. in Rochester

Cleantech companies at RIT Venture Creations are developing new technologies for wind turbines, photovoltaics and biofuels, as well as solutions for data center cooling, energy metering and monitoring, smart grid connectivity, energy harvesting and treatment of hydrofracking water.

  • Article Feature - Start Right Up In Rochester
    Rochester, home to Rochester Institute of Technology, is the place to be when it comes to technological innovation, entrepreneurship, and business development.

The Clean Tech CenterLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. in Syracuse

The Clean Tech Center at the Tech Garden in Syracuse supports companies commercializing grid-related clean energy technology. Working with a team of advisors, early-stage companies reach investment-ready status through a customized incubation and acceleration process.

Directed Energy: University at Buffalo Office of Science, Technology Transfer, and Economic Outreach (STOR)Link opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. in Buffalo

Directed Energy facilitates the emergence and growth of an alternative energy technology and business cluster in Western New York. This virtual incubator program, managed by the University at Buffalo STOR, brings together a broad range of technology and business assets in the region. It supports early stage companies developing products for bio, geothermal, hydro, solar and wind energy. NYSERDA’s funding helps STOR accelerate the successful development of early-stage, clean energy technology companies in Western New York.

  • Article Feature - High-Tech Buffalo Is Open for Business
    Some time ago, a startup in a suburb of Buffalo, N.Y., found a simple way to increase energy conservation in laboratories on an unprecedented scale.

Market Technology and Manufacturing Insert GraphicGrowth Essentials: Market, Technology and Manufacturing

NYSERDA has a core capability in technology and product development across energy sectors. Through a variety of program offerings, NYSERDA can help you develop your technology from bench scale through commercialization. We support the industry-led New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology Consortium (NY-BEST™), the New York State Smart Grid Consortium, the Lighting Research Center, Proof-of-Concept Centers, Technology Testing Centers for photovoltaics and small wind turbine blades, and five Energy Frontier Research Centers. We can also help you access the resources of New York’s Economic and Regional Development Centers (REDC’s).

  • NY-Best
    The New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology Consortium (NY-BEST™) Link opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. is an industry-led coalition working to build and promote a vibrant, world-class, advanced battery and energy storage sector in New York State. New York State and NY-BEST are aggressively building an energy storage industry with corporate, academic and federal partners.
  • New York State Smart Grid Consortium
    The New York State SmartGrid ConsortiumLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. represents a key public-private partnership to promote broad statewide implementation of the smart grid. It is the only organization of its scale in the U.S. that is committed to representing all major contributors across the energy value chain, including utilities, markets, operators, industry, academia, government and end-users.
  • Lighting Research Center
    The Lighting Research Center at RensselaerLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. is the world's leading university-based research and education organization devoted to lighting—from technologies to applications and energy use and from design to health and vision.
  • Proof-of-Concept Centers
    NYSERDA funds Proof-of-Concept Centers to move promising inventions out of the lab and into the market, focusing on the creation of viable new start-up companies. Proof-of-Concept Centers identify clean energy technologies that are most likely to spawn successful new businesses, drawing from the innovations in their final stages of development at world-class research facilities across the State. Clients receive mentoring and resources to validate their technology and take the next step to commercialization—creating a start-up company in an incubator or other location.
    Proof-of-Concept Centers include Columbia University in the city of New York, the NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering and High Tech Rochester. POCCs are an important component of NYSERDA’s technology innovation and business development efforts, which contribute to the robust infrastructure required for cleantech businesses to grow in New York State.
  • Technology Testing Centers
    Rigorous, real-life testing scenarios that measure safety, performance, reliability, durability, and longevity of clean energy products are essential to bringing innovative products to market. Intertek created two such centers to provide these services in New York State—they are among the first facilities of their kind in the nation. These centers provide buyers of wind and solar products with reliable, third-party safety and performance verification for small wind and PV systems. At the same time, sellers of renewable energy products can demonstrate compliance to regulatory requirements and incentive program requirements.
    NYSERDA supported Intertek and a consortium of partners to establish the first photovoltaic solar testing lab on the East Coast in Cortland, NYLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. and a one-of-a-kind wind turbine blade test facility in Potsdam, NY at Clarkson UniversityLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page..

Energy Frontier Research Center Frontiers of Science

Columbia University—Redefining Photovoltaic Efficiency through Molecule-Scale Control
Objective: To develop the enabling science needed to realize breakthroughs in the efficient conversion of sunlight into electricity in nanometer sized thin films.

This Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC) brings together a team of theoretical, computational and experimental experts on nanoparticles to address the fundamental scientific challenges in nanoscale materials, complex layered structures, and interconnection schemes. Knowledge from these fundamental studies will significantly improve solar energy conversion in organic molecular systems. The EFRC plans collaborations with solar-energy experts from University of Minnesota, Purdue University, University of Arkansas, Brookhaven National Laboratory including the Center for Functional Nanomaterials, and General Electric.

Brookhaven National Laboratory—Center for Emergent Superconductivity
Objective: Discovering new high-temperature superconductors and improving the performance of known superconductors through improved understanding of the fundamental physics of superconductivity.

This EFRC works toward the discovery of new superconductors with higher critical temperatures, critical currents and isotropy, and to improve the performance of known superconductors while seeking an understanding of the physics that control their critical temperature, critical current, and overall performance. The EFRC executes combined experimental and theoretical investigations of known high-temperature superconductors in an attempt to elucidate the mechanism of superconductivity. This understanding will be used to propose viable and realistic new materials systems to investigate, to develop new ways to control the behavior of vortex matter, and to direct the discovery of new or improved families of superconducting materials with higher critical temperatures and critical currents. The EFRC includes planned collaborations with scientists at Argonne National Laboratory and University of Illinois and will perform neutron scattering experiments at the Spallation Neutron Source at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and angle-resolved photoemission experiments at the National Synchrotron Light Source at Brookhaven National Laboratory and the Advanced Photon Source at Argonne National Laboratory.

Cornell University—Nanostructured Interfaces for Energy Generation, Conversion, and Storage
Objective: To understand and control the nature, structure, and dynamics of reactions at electrodes in fuel cells, batteries, solar photovoltaics, and catalysts.

This EFRC concentrates on the overriding theme of understanding the nature, structure, and dynamics of interfaces on energy generation, conversion and storage. Reactions at electrodes in fuel cells, charging and discharging reactions in lithium ion batteries, charge generation in photovoltaic and photo-electrochemical devices, and numerous catalytic systems all depend critically on the nature and structure of interfaces between materials and different states of matter. The center integrates the synthesis of model systems with atomic level control, and explores electronically conducting polymers in contact with metal electrodes. In addition, fundamental theory and computations, combined with the development of specialized tools, differentiate the fundamental properties of the best materials over the range of intended operating conditions. These investigations will dramatically accelerate the development of energy generation, conversion and storage technologies and thus the evolution of the entire energy landscape. This EFRC includes a planned collaboration with scientists at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

State University of New York, Stony Brook—Northeastern Chemical Energy Storage Center (NOCESC)
Objective: To understand how fundamental chemical reactions occur at electrodes and to use that knowledge to design new chemical energy storage systems.

This EFRC seeks a fundamental understanding of how electrode reactions occur, and how they can be tailored by appropriate electrode design so that critical structural and physical properties can be used to design new battery systems. These new systems are vital to improving battery performance. The NOCESC also develops advanced in-situ diagnostic methods for chemical energy storage systems that combine multiple experimental approaches, such as spectroscopy and imaging. The EFRC includes planned collaboration with scientists from Rutgers University, SUNY-Binghamton, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the University of Michigan, Argonne National Laboratory including the Advanced Photon Source, Brookhaven National Laboratory including the National Synchrotron Light Source and the Center for Functional Nanomaterials, and the University of Florida.

General Electric Company—Center for Electrocatalysis, Transport Phenomena, and Materials for Innovative Energy Storage (CETM)
Objective: To explore fundamental chemistry for new energy storage approach that combines best properties of a fuel cell and a flow battery.

While this work at General Electric is not funded by NYSERDA, the research here is a powerful resource coming out of New York State and drawing together some of the best minds across the country. The focus of GE’s EFRC-CETM will be on advanced energy storage technologies and the pursuit of a zero carbon emissions solution for both transportation and stationary power applications. The EFRC-CETM is made up of a multidisciplinary team representing industry, academia and national laboratories, and is responsible for investigating electocatalysis and transport phenomena that will ultimately lead to a new paradigm in energy storage—high-density energy storage organic fuel cells/flow batteries. Participating organizations include GE Global Research, Yale University–Crabtree Group, Yale University–Batista Group, Stanford University, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. GE Global Research has the distinction of being the only corporate research laboratory chosen to lead an EFRC.

New York State Economic and Regional Development Centers (REDC’s)

NYSTAR’s Regional Technology Development Center Link opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. is a network of 10 independent, not-for-profit organizations committed to providing direct, strategic assistance to companies in the areas of entrepreneurship, technology commercialization, product development and high-tech business incubator management. Two other organizations ready to help New York State clean energy businesses succeed are Empire State Development Link opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. and New York First Link opens in new window - close new window to return to this page..

Network Insert GraphicGrowth Essential: Network

Developing Innovative Technologies Puts You On a Path; NYSERDA Keeps You On Track.

New York State and New York State assets, including NYSERDA, lead the way in supporting innovative businesses and promoting sustainable technologies. With $600 million in annual NYSERDA program funding to advance energy and efficient technologies, New York State is ranked:

  • 3rd in the United States for high tech employment.1
  • 2nd in the United States for number of cleantech patents.1
  • 4th in the United States for number of cleantech companies (270).1
  • 2nd in the United States for size of its electric and gas efficiency program budget.1
  • 1st on the East Coast in renewable energy consumption.

1) Source: “New York State Clean Energy Technologies Innovation Metrics 2012” May 2013.

NYSERDA supports innovative online networks and tools such as and Green Capital Empire. NYSERDA also supports cleantech business development events, throughout the year, across the State. Through these formal and informal networks, you become a vital part of New York State's vibrant cleantech community and engage opportunities for funding, partnerships and acquisitions, market development and more.

As someone who is interested in New York’s cleantech community, you are part of a rich and valuable network of people and resources spanning the entire path to commercialization. CleantechNYconnect brings it all together. This online networking hub, designed for New York’s cleantech community, helps you create and maintain the connections you need.

Start and participate in discussions, competitions and projects. Get real-time information on news, trends and industry happenings. Access a funding opportunity directory and find or post a cleantech job in New York State. Search for product and service providers in the cleantech company marketplace. You can create user and company profiles or import your LinkedInTM profile and manage your cleantech professional network in one convenient location, focused on your business.

Explore or join at cleantechNYconnect.comLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page.

Green Capital Empire

For movers in the New York State cleantech community, Green Capital Empire provides powerful research tools driven by a wealth of data on emerging technology areas, investment trends and players in the market.

As a start-up or emerging company, you can research and connect with investors and potential acquirers, track competitors, understand investment syndicates, explore board of director relationships and more. As an investor, you can conduct comparable analysis, track and benchmark peers, find and research potential acquirers of portfolio companies and analyze dealflow and ideas.

All Green Capital Empire members can analyze historical financing and stay a step ahead of industry trends based on financing, merger and acquisition activity. Members also enjoy access to online networking tools and invitation-only events.

Request access at greencapitalempire.comLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page.

Last Updated: 11/26/2014