Join Ben Franklin’s virtual pitch event on June 14 to pick the People’s Choice Winner

Eight entrepreneurial startups are graduating from Ben Franklin’s TechCelerator @State College, and will be competing in a pitch contest for seed money to help launch their companies. On Tuesday, June 14, 2022, at 2:00 PM, the teams will pitch their business concepts to a panel of independent judges for a cash prize of up to […]


Entrepreneurship News

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March 22, 2022
$50,000 prize could turn the next Big Idea into reality

This spring, Ben Franklin Technology Partners is looking for innovators with big ideas in Happy Valley, Clarion, Clearfield, and Jefferson Counties — and the winner takes home $50,000. “The Big Idea contest is a great way for entrepreneurs to get involved with Happy Valley’s entrepreneur ecosystem,” says Annie Hughes, who is the project’s organizer as […]

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March 8, 2022
Tolstoy, tech and why Happy Valley is the #1 place for startups today

Five questions with Ben Franklin’s John Sider   For the last 8 years, John Sider has been an innovation matchmaker, pairing growing companies with capital to get them to the next level (he also led Ben Franklin’s effort in creating the $11 million venture capital fund 1855 Capital based in State College). This spring, he’s […]

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February 28, 2022
See a need, fill a need: BAI Group’s journey from waste management consulting to leading solar energy advancement

Between 2020 and 2021, State College-based BAI Group’s revenue from its solar energy segment grew by ten times, and President Jim Echard projects this same rapid and significant growth over the next five years. The local company, which got its start in waste management, is a major player in the greening of the Mid-Atlantic energy […]

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February 22, 2022
5 questions with a Happy Valley CEO: Juan Mario Gomez with Xact Metal

Sometimes in business, it’s all about how the stars align. Xact Metal’s CEO Juan Mario Gomez spent decades working as an executive with GE before leaving to pursue a more entrepreneurial environment. A seemingly kismet meeting started what’s now a fast-growing company. After leaving GE, Gomez connected with Invent Penn State and the Happy Valley […]

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February 22, 2022
The road to redemption runs through Tyrone

How failure, gumption and the power of friendship created one of the biggest European motorsport franchises on the East Coast When Josh Nolten and Dave Myers became friends at Park Forest Junior High, mainly because their last names and thus their lockers were so dang close together, they never imagined that one day they’d be […]

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February 8, 2022
Online Shopping Attracts New Customers to Local Farm Markets

A visit to any farmers market is, by its very nature, social. The mingling with other shoppers. The chit-chatting with the vendors. You get to know your neighbors and the folks who grow your food on a deeper level. So what happens when the “social” part of just about everything is stripped away and the […]

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