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Avnet and ASU seek nation’s next tech entrepreneurs

Avnet Innovation Lab to grant $250,000 to technology visionaries

Avnet, Inc., and the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering are now accepting applications for the next class of entrepreneurs for the Avnet Innovation Lab. Launched in May 2016, the lab was created to spur economic growth and help aspiring technology entrepreneurs accelerate their ideas and take their inventions to the next level. Applications for the next round of innovators will be accepted through November 14, 2016. (Note: The application deadline has been extended to December 7, 2016.)

Cody Friesen, an ASU materials science and engineering associate professor, explains the opportunities available in the Avnet Innovation Lab.

Cody Friesen, an ASU materials science and engineering associate professor, explains the opportunities available in the Avnet Innovation Lab. Photo courtesy of Avnet, Inc.

Through the collaboration, entrepreneurs can leverage the expertise of Avnet — one of the largest technology distributors in the world — and the university ranked #1 in innovation in the U.S. – Arizona State University. Lab participants are awarded grants from a $250,000 annual donation provided by Avnet. They also receive personal consultation from experts in technology distribution, supply chain management and next-generation technologies throughout the 12-18 month program. This consultation helps participants reach the next phase in the innovation process. Participants also have access to dedicated lab space in a state-of-the-art engineering facility on the Tempe campus.

Avnet Innovation Lab successes

The next class of entrepreneurs will join the successful ranks of Avnet Innovation Lab participants, who have created revolutionary technologies for today’s high-growth industries including retail, hybrid automotive solutions, security and chemical safety.

  • Pit Rho and Twyst are changing the way consumers shop by creating a Smart Bag, which eliminates the need to wait in checkout lines. Using the internet of things, this smart retail bag links the in-store shopping experience with the convenience of online shopping. With the help of the Avnet Innovation Lab, Pit Rho has successfully taken the product to market.
  • XL Hybrids is utilizing Avnet’s supply chain expertise to reduce electrical and telematics components and service costs that make up the company’s hybrid electrification business. XL Hybrids’ technology can be applied to new and existing commercial vehicles to effectively reduce fuel use and emissions.
  • Digital Bio advanced its new, gold-standard early warning detection system that monitors for microbes and other biological agents that could pose a risk to national security, industrial processing, agribusiness and environmental health. The Avnet Innovation Lab’s technological and engineering expertise and supply chain support is helping to move the system into production, transforming the way that bioanalysis takes place.
  • SILER is helping make the polymers more user and environmentally friendly. The organization is creating a safer polymer system by minimizing the exposure of potentially dangerous volatile organic compounds found in some cleansers, glues, cosmetics, paints, pesticides and more, as well as increasing the use of the safe chemical in electronics and renewable energy manufacturing. Through the Avnet Innovation Lab, the team has conducted further research and develop proof-of-concept evidence related to the benefits of their technology.

 

“The Avnet Innovation Lab is one of the many exciting ways we’re driving innovative thought in technology and providing the support needed to bring new products to market,” said MaryAnn Miller, senior vice president, chief human resources officer and corporate marketing and communications for Avnet, Inc. “Our first four lab participants have set a high bar, and the combination of funding and hands-on engagement with industry experts is delivering solid results.”

“All of those involved in the program share a passion for invention,” said Dr. Cody Friesen, founder and chairman of the Avnet Innovation Lab Advisory Council, ASU associate professor and CEO of Zero Mass Water. “As the journey progresses with the next-generation of entrepreneurs, we’re seeing firsthand the creation of things that never existed before; technologies that never were, now are. Our next round of performers will build upon this legacy, and we’re looking forward to supporting an even broader range of innovative technology ideas that will make the world a better place.”

Media Contact
Terry Grant, theresa.grant@asu.edu
480-727-4058
Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering

About The Author

Terry Grant

Contact: theresa.grant@asu.edu Media Relations Officer 480-727-4058

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