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The two tech incubators at UND's Center for Innovation have been designated as Soft Landings International Incubators by the International Business Innovation Association. IMAGE: CENTER FOR INNOVATION FOUNDATION

UND Center for Innovation receives international designation

GRAND FORKS — The two technology incubators at the University of North Dakota Center for Innovation Foundation have been designated as Soft Landings International Incubators by the International Business Innovation Association (InBIA). The designation is designed to show international entrepreneurs which venture development organizations excel in providing the facilities, services and programs necessary to help them break into new markets, says Bruce Gjovig, CEO and entrepreneur coach with the UND Center for Innovation Foundation.

“This designation is earned by successfully working with numerous international entrepreneurs,” Gjovig says in a statement. “Performance is required for this prestigious designation.”

The InBIA Soft Landings global network has only 31 designees in eight countries, including in China, Australia, France, Taiwan and Uruguay. Other U.S. locations include Atlanta; San Jose, California; Baltimore; Boston; Orlando, Florida; and Philadelphia.

The Center for Innovation was one of the first five incubators in the world to secure the designation in 2006, Gjovig says in a press release. “The UND Center for Innovation Foundation was selected for the program because of its wide array of entrepreneur services for international entrepreneurs and its demonstrated success at helping these firms enter the U.S. market,” he writes. The incubators — Skalicky Tech Incubator and the Ina Mae Rude Entrepreneur Center — help international firms enter new domestic markets, provide entrepreneur coaching services, help cut through governmental red tape, and provide access to capital, domestic market research and export entry strategies. Specifically, Gjovig cites InBIA’s mention of the Center for Innovation’s support for international firms and recertification.  

The incubators host 30 ventures employing more than 120.