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Syracuse-Based Entrepreneurial Program Picks 5 NY Tech Companies for 2023 BIPOC Inaugural Cohort

Five upstate New York-based companies operated by Black-Indigenous Persons of Color (BIPOC) have been selected to participate in a year-long business accelerator program designed to provide resources and support and growth of technology-related and technology-adjacent startup enterprises.

On August 8, 2023, CenterState CEO, a business advocacy organization, unveiled the chosen pioneering BIPOC companies slated to participate in this debut year of the Syracuse Surge Accelerator (SSA) initiative.

Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh was noted by CenterState CEO as expressing “enthusiasm,” while underscoring the burgeoning technology landscape in the city and the region.

Walsh is said to have highlighted the imperative of inclusive growth in the emerging economy, emphasizing that “Syracuse must surpass the national statistic where less than 25% of tech startups are founded by people of color”; having also reportedly noted that the SSA is a pivotal investment poised to dismantle systemic barriers hindering BIPOC founders from venturing into the tech domain and joining the workforce.

On the program’s website, Dr. Emad Rahim, SSA entrepreneur manager says: “We know there are significantly few tech startups with minority founders. Through this program, we seek to drive change and create opportunities for those innovators to turn their ideas into businesses right here in Syracuse, New York."

The selected quintet of companies will commence their 12-month journey at The Tech Garden, CenterState CEO's innovation hub, on August 22, 2023. SSA participants will gain access to an array of programming and resources, including an ignition grant, stipends, and other assets collectively valued at $90,000.

Funding for SSA stems from the JP Morgan Chase Foundation and Microsoft. Notably, all five finalists hail from the Upstate New York region.

Here are the chosen five companies, along with brief descriptions of each business:

Clutch Delivery LLC (Syracuse, NY): Pioneering an advanced location-based dining delivery experience for higher education institutions, employing students as drivers to access all campus buildings.

Certainty Analytical Labs (Rochester, NY): A B2B life science laboratory offering compliance testing services to environmental, food, pharmaceutical, and cannabis industries, streamlining market entry and brand protection.

Sign-Speak Inc. (Rochester, NY): Pioneering real-time sign language recognition and communication solutions, facilitating interaction between Deaf and Hard of Hearing individuals and businesses.

HippoH Apparel, LLC (Clay, NY): A streetwear brand empowering emerging BIPOC creatives while supplying stylish apparel, fostering culture integration through wearable technology collaborations.

Talkadot (Jamesville, NY): Offering a ‘Software as a Service’ (SaaS) platform to public speakers for audience data collection and testimonial gathering, enabling evidence-based presentations.

Participants are expected to benefit from complimentary workspace at The Tech Garden, mentorship from industry experts and founders, executive advisors, marketing and fundraising support, and an array of other resources. The ultimate objective is to empower underrepresented BIPOC entrepreneurs, fostering the growth and sustainability of their startups within Syracuse, New York.

More information about the Syracuse Surge Accelerator is available at The Tech Garden's official website: <>




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