Author: Hanju Lee

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Clear Guide Medical wins the 2013 Maryland Incubator Company…

Clear Guide Medical, one of the first Johns Hopkins startups to move into FastForward, has won the 2013 Maryland Incubator Company of the Year Award in the Life Sciences/Medical Device category.

“The 2013 Incubator Company of the Year winners represent the most outstanding group of startups in the state,” says Rob Rosenbaum, president and executive director of the Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO).

The 2013 winners were selected based on goals and success in achieving their objectives. Judges considered factors such as technology or product development, intellectual property, increase in employee numbers, and growth in revenue or earnings. Clear Guide also received a two-year $1 million grant to commercialize its ultrasound probe to guide needle intervention.

Clear Guide was founded by Computer Science Department Chair Gregory D. Hager and Emad M. Boctor, an assistant professor in Radiology and the director of the Medical UltraSound Imaging and Intervention Collaboration Research Laboratory. They work with former post-doctoral student, Phillip Stolka, co-inventor of the technology, and Dorothee Heisenberg, chief operating officer.

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FastForward Receives 37 Applications Since Launch

In late June, at a festive evening party, the Whiting School of Engineering unveiled FastForward, a groundbreaking business accelerator that promises to spark cutting-edge technology companies and then keep them in the city to bolster the local economy.

The university launched FastForward to help turn the best ideas born on campus into moneymaking ventures. Four fledgling companies have already moved into the building and another four are expected to join them over the next six months. In the first few months, 37 startups have applied to join the accelerator. Three companies, NanoDirect, Revolve and JPLC Associates, have received $100,000 each in Maryland Innovation Initiative (MII) funding.

“It’s already growing very, very fast,” says John Fini, the director of FastForward and Homewood Intellectual Property and Technology Commercialization Office. “And that says something about Johns Hopkins’ entrepreneurial spirit.”

FastForward equips start-ups with rent-deferred office space in the Stieff Silver building where they have access to a shared laboratory with top-of-the-line equipment and a machine shop to construct prototypes.

Even more critically, the accelerator’s team of business experts helps academics, perhaps more comfortable in a lab, navigate the intricacies of launching a business. The start-ups will receive coaching with everything from writing a business plan to applying for patents to finding potential investors.

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