Report: NIU to take EIGERlab to the next level in innovation


EIGERlab - new

ROCKFORD, March 17 — Northern Illinois University has taken over EIGERlab in 2015 in line with its regional leadership mission of entrepreneurship and innovation.

The university plans to grow the Rockford-based business incubator, 605 Fulton Ave., by connecting it with educational and business resources across a wider geographic region.

The Rockford Register Star reports that eventually it will be known as the NIU EIGERlab Innovation Network.

EIGERlab assists new and early-stage companies to achieve growth and increase profits through coaching/programming/business development and product prototyping/engineering, including 3-D printer services.

Rena Cotsones, associate vice president of engagement and innovation partnerships for NIU, was quoted as saying: “With this new affiliation with NIU, I really believe that it will be able to evolve to the next level to really connect to the Illinois innovation ecosystem in a new and exciting way that is going to help the region immensely.”

Rockford Area Strategic Initiatives, a nonprofit organization established in 2008 by the RAEDC to manage vital initiatives, previously managed EIGERlab. The RAEDC will continue to support NIU in this strategic partnership change.

“With NIU behind it, it’s a much stronger entity,” Mike Nicholas, RAEDC president, told the Register Star. “They’re going to bring their engineering students, their business students and their whole depth of academic talent that they have to help companies move forward.”

Below are photos from the 2014 Fast Pitch competition at EIGERlab; Tracie and Glen Burress launched a popular new sockTABs invention that pairs your socks so they don’t get lost in the dryer. This year’s event is June 17.

Read Northern Public Radio’s article.

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