Local Government
Glendale city takes bold step to establish two new tech accelerators

Glendale city takes bold step to establish two new tech accelerators

City of Glendale logoOn Tuesday, May 19, 2020, the Glendale City Council unanimously voted to contract with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (KidsX Digital Health Accelerator) and Hero House Glendale for the operation and program management of a Start-Up Tech Accelerator in Glendale. This is the result of a 2-year effort to develop an accelerator program that will further stimulate the growth of the start-up ecosystem in the City.

After an extensive selection process that yielded 20 proposals featuring an impressive pool of applicants, the Glendale City Council authorized hiring two operators for the creation of two distinct accelerator programs.

The Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA) – KidsX Digital Health Accelerator was awarded $500,000 over 3 years to focus on advancing digital health innovation for pediatric health and healthcare. The program will provide innovation in a field that is very timely and will serve as the first Pediatric-focused digital health accelerator in the world. Pediatric health services include the use of artificial intelligence, gamification, virtual, augmented or mixed reality, mobile apps, voice-enabled services and remote monitoring, among others.

Hero House Glendale was awarded $500,000 over 3 years to implement a non-industry specific “Gateway to LA” program that will focus on international or out-of- state companies looking to expand their product in Southern California. It will also accept applicants from Glendale and/or Southern California. This program will be established by SmartGateVC, and backed by Draper University of Heroes in San Mateo, CA, as well as the Armenian Engineers and Scientists of America.

“The City of Glendale is ready to take the next step in establishing itself as a comprehensive regional hub for technology and innovation. Our accelerators will further cement our position as such,” said Mayor Vrej Agajanian.

In the recent years, cultivating the technology sector in the City has played a crucial role in invigorating Downtown Glendale and the City as a whole. Since the adoption of the Glendale Tech Strategy on January 24, 2017, the City has worked in developing programming, attracting co-work space operators such as Industrious and WeWork, and assisted in the expansion and attraction of top tech firms. There is a strong need for an accelerator program in the Tri-Cities region. Currently, start-up companies travel outside of Glendale, Burbank and Pasadena to obtain services such as mentorship and access to investors.

Together, the two accelerators will work with 60 start-ups over the course of three years. “With these two operators we have the opportunity to position our city as the leader in the startup ecosystem in our region and beyond,” said Alex Bruno, Founder of Bruno Group Inc., and member of the accelerator selection committee.

The Glendale Start-Up Tech Accelerator program is possible through a combination of City funding and a $1 million grant from the State of California. Per the Agreement with the State, the City is expected to hire the operators by June 2020. CHLA is scheduled to start recruiting startups to apply for the program in Summer 2020. The cohort would officially launch January 2021. Hero House is scheduled to launch their accelerator in Fall 2020, pending US international travel policies.

To learn more about how to stay involved with the Accelerator, visit GlendaleTechWeek.com/accelerator.

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