ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT & BUSINESS ACCELERATION

Opportunities in Central New York, Mohawk Valley and the Northeast Region

The NUAIR Alliance works in collaboration with regional economic development agencies to support the unmanned aircraft system (UAS) sensor industry, mainly in the northeastern U.S. region. NUAIR was founded by members of CenterState CEO and later joined by Mohawk Valley Economic Development Growth Enterprises Corporation (Mohawk Valley EDGE) and the Massachusetts Development and Finance Agency (MassDevelopment) to respond to the UAS Test Site opportunity created by Congress in 2012.

CenterState CEO is an independent and forward-thinking economic development strategist, business leadership organization and chamber of commerce; dedicated to the success of its members and the prosperity of the region. Central New York and the Mohawk Valley have taken a leading role in growing the Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) industry. In 2011, CenterState CEO, in collaboration with sensor industry leaders SRC, Inc, Saab Sensis Corp. and Lockheed Martin, assembled the expertise and resources to found the NUAIR Alliance and successfully compete for one of seven FAA designations as a UAS test site. CenterState CEO and NUAIR work to advance UAS-related economic development opportunities for the region, actively pursuing business attraction leads to bring firms and jobs to the region. Membership provides access to business development assistance and connections to nearly 2,000 member businesses of all sizes across Central and Northern New York. Companies interested in growing within the UAS or related sectors should contact Mike Novakowski, director of business development for CenterState CEO, at mnovakowski@centerstateceo.com.

The NUAIR Alliance provides economic development leadership for the growth of the UAS business sector in Central New York. The Alliance also provides public education about civil and commercial use of UAS. Through its partnership, CenterState CEO provides government relations, communications, and back-office support for the NUAIR mission, while working in concert to advance the economic development opportunities the UAS industry holds for the region. With leadership from NUAIR and Centerstate CEO, Project UAS Secure Autonomous Flight Environment (Project U-SAFE) is among the key initiatives to position Central New York as national leader in the future of unmanned systems and commercial aviation.

  • The New York Upstate Revitalization Initiative (URI) is part of an overall program aimed at systematically revitalizing the economy of Upstate New York. Modeled after the success of the Buffalo Billion Initiative, the URI is an opportunity for the communities of upstate New York to address the economic challenges of their regions and work together in bringing jobs back upstate.
  • The Central New York URI Plan is rooted in the region’s natural, business and academic advantages and is focused on strategic initiatives with regional, national and international corporate partners that will lead to thousands of new jobs, billions in capital investments and a lasting legacy for the region of an inclusive economic revival. The strategic initiatives in Central New York’s plan include: Global Center for Unmanned Systems and Cross-Connected Platforms, New York-Grown, New York-Certified—Safe and Market-Ready, Global Manufacturing and Logistics Hub, National Veterans Resource Complex, and a Consensus Commission on Government Modernization.
  • Empire State Development (ESD) is New York’s chief economic development agency and the sky is the limit for economic development and innovation in New York State, a top-ranked home to scientists and engineers, STEM graduates and academic R&D funding. New York is becoming a booming hub for new technologies and the businesses of tomorrow. Through the state’s strategic investments, based on a community-based economic development model that builds on regional strengths, Central New York has emerged as a leader in next-gen technology, and a destination for the world to develop new ideas and tap into the future of unmanned systems.
  • GENIUS NY, the largest business accelerator competition for the UAS industry in the world based in Syracuse, NY, awarded $2.75 million in grand prizes after a 12-month in-residence business competition and accelerator program hosted at The Tech Garden in downtown Syracuse.  Funded by Empire State Development, the innovation program builds on the progress of CNY Rising, which calls for major investments in the unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) industry in central New York.

    During the event, teams pitched their business plans to a panel of judges and a live audience. Following the pitches, all six competitors were awarded one of six investments. The teams, which located to central New York earlier this year, will use the investments to continue to accelerate their growth and expand their presence in the region. AutoModality, who won the $1 million grand prize, creates autonomous drone systems for close-up inspections. The company is particularly focused on the inspection of agriculture and infrastructure assets.

    The state will commit $5 million to support a second round of the business accelerator, GENIUS NY II, for 2018. These applications will accepted for three months beginning in June.

CNY Rising is the regional plan and investment prospectus submitted in 2015 for New York State’s Upstate Revitalization Initiative, ultimately awarded $500 million in competitive economic development funding.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo poses with representatives of the Central New York Regional Economic Development Council during an awards ceremony on Thursday, Dec. 10, 2015, in Albany, N.Y. The Finger Lakes, the Southern Tier and central New York have each won $500 million in state funds as part of Gov. Cuomo’s upstate economic development competition. (AP Photo/Mike Groll)

GENIUS NY, a yearlong business accelerator, awarded six finalist teams a total of $2.75 million on March 15, 2017. GENIUS NY, funded by Empire State Development, builds on the progress of CNY Rising, which calls for major investments in the unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) industry in central New York. AutoModality won the $1 million grand prize; Ascent Aerosystems was awarded the second place prize of $600,000; OmniMesh was named third place, winning $400,000; while three finalists, Akrobotix, EZ3D and SkyOp, all were awarded $250,000.

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