Win up to $30,000 for your food or beverage innovation


Ben Franklin’s Food & Beverage TechCelerator is offering a 10-week virtual Business Boot Camp for entrepreneurs and startup companies developing scalable, innovative and technology-focused products and services in the food and beverage industry. The deadline to apply is Dec. 12. It’s big news for two reasons.

“Ben Franklin Technology Partners, CNP has been providing the TechCelerator program for over 10 years, but the program has been geared toward tech-based startups,” Julie Bratton, portfolio and operations coordinator at Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Central & Northern PA said. “This is the first time that we will be delivering an industry-focused TechCelerator. We choose the food and beverage industry, considering the state’s focus on food and beverage manufacturing and to extend our reach to entrepreneurs through new partners and channels.”

The second part of the excitement is the prize. After going through the TechCelerator, participants can create an investor pitch and present to a panel of local judges for an opportunity to win up to $30,000 — an increase over most TechCelerator prize awards.

The TechCelerator is perfect for any startup poised to disrupt the food and beverage market with an innovative product, process, material or tool to support the industry. And it can help no matter where you are in the start up process.

“It’s for the founder who is developing a business idea, to those testing or starting to commercialize and want to fine-tune their business model through customer discovery, coaching, lessons and new connections with experts and other entrepreneurs,” Bratton said.

During the 10-week training, participants will gain valuable tools like a working business model, proformas, market insights and an investor pitch.  A network of resources and contacts are also made throughout the program that participants can reach out to, as they navigate startup trials and tribulations. Plus, they’ll have ongoing Ben Franklin assistance and consideration for investment funding.

“Not only is this a no-cost opportunity, packed full of 10 weeks of business learnings, but there is also a chance to pitch their business to a panel of community judges and win up to $30,000 — a great seed to put into their business development!” Bratton said.

As a TechCelerator participant, you will:

  • Explore the likelihood of your business’s success and learn to minimize risks
  • Develop a working business model, proformas and gain market insights
  • Participate in one-on-one mentoring with business coaches from Ben Franklin, as well as Penn State and Gannon University’s Small Business Development Centers
  • Expand your network and engage with other entrepreneurs
  • Create an investor pitch and present to a panel of local judges for an opportunity to win up to $30,000

The weekly Zoom classes are Tuesdays starting Jan. 10, 2023, through March 14, 2023. One-hour on-line mentoring/coaching sessions will also be provided each week.

(Must be located in Ben Franklin/CNP’s 32-County footprint to apply.)

The deadline to apply is December 12, 2022.

Apply here.


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