<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=1109988332988077&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">
Skip to content

mHUB Wins Stage Two Prize of U.S. Small Business Administration 2023 Growth Accelerator Fund Competition



Press Contact:
Kim Blomquist 

mHUB Wins Stage Two Prize of U.S. Small Business Administration’s 2023 Growth Accelerator Fund Competition  

mHUB has been awarded $150,000 in prize money to implement Growth Accelerator Partnerships that foster a collaborative ecosystem to advance innovation from idea to impact

(CHICAGO September 21, 2023) – Today, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced mHUB as a Stage Two winner for the 2023 Growth Accelerator Fund Competition. mHUB will receive a $150,000 cash prize to build strategic partnerships that will support the launch, growth, and scale of entrepreneurs building tech-based and R&D focused small businesses.

This year’s Competition has brought together organizations, entities, groups, and individuals beyond geographic boundaries to support innovators and innovation needed to confront the challenges of today. After winning a $50,000 Stage One cash prize earlier this year, mHUB continues its efforts to foster and facilitate a thriving national ecosystem that advances equitable investment in innovative high-growth small businesses.

“mHUB is grateful for the support of the SBA and is pleased to build greater connectivity with the Heartland Climate Tech Partnership, Illinois Manufacturing Excellence Center, and Illinois Manufacturers' Association,” said Shannon McGhee, mHUB VP of Programs and Engagement. “This recognition will help grow relationships between entrepreneurs building physical technologies in climate and energy and the manufacturers and supply chains that can bring them to market.”

"In collaboration with the Heartland Climate Tech Partnership, we are proud to offer access to dedicated supply chain specialists to startups in our network,” said Erik Birkerts, CEO of Evergreen Climate Innovations. “By accessing these in-house experts, startups will be able to address challenges related to product design, supplier selection, and scaling supply chains."

The SBA intends the Growth Accelerator Partnerships to help entrepreneurs commercialize their R&D efforts by using Stage Two awards for activities including training and mentorship, introducing entrepreneurs to customers and suppliers, and providing opportunities to pitch investors. The Competition also targets accelerators that support businesses and/or geographies that traditionally face barriers in obtaining R&D funds and investment capital.

Winners of Stage Two were selected through a multi-tier review panel process by experts in entrepreneurship, business, innovation, and strategic planning. Applications were reviewed by expert judges and then the Catalyst partnerships participated in an interview process with members of the Office of Investment and Innovation Ecosystem Development team.

“The Illinois Manufacturers’ Association and IMEC are providing technical assistance to manufacturers, assisting them in effectively working with startups and small businesses,” said Mark Denzler, president & CEO of the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association. “We are thrilled to have the support of the SBA to foster a stronger collaboration between our organizations and reducing barriers between startups and regional suppliers and manufacturers.” 

“This partnership extends the IMEC and IMA's Supply Chain Center initiative, funded through US Commerce NIST Manufacturing Extension Partnership, to enhance connectivity between regional manufacturers and startups,” said David Boulay, IMEC president. “This collaboration aims to drive regional economic growth by facilitating local sourcing. With the support of the SBA, startups can leverage this network to discover local suppliers and contract manufacturers that meet their specific needs."

For more information about the Growth Accelerator Fund Competition, please visit sbir.gov/accelerators.

To learn more about engaging with mHUB's manufacturing and supply chain initiatives, please contact team@mhubchicago.com. If you are a startup seeking resources, connect with the mHUB membership team here: Become a Member.


About mHUB 

mHUB is a leading independent hardtech and manufauring innovation center that exists to convene the entrepreneurial ecosystem around physical product innovation to ensure that the manufacturing industry continues to accelerate, grow and thrive. The mHUB community includes over 500 active and alumni startups and small businesses supported by a deep talent pool of product designers and developers, entrepreneurs, engineers and manufacturers, corporate leaders, industry experts, mentors and investors. mHUB provides a hyper-resourced environment to entrepreneurs with the goal of commercializing new hardtech innovation that will lead to new businesses, intellectual property, investment, revenue, and job creation. Since launching in 2017, the mHUB community has generated more than $1.14B in revenue, launched more than 1,502 products, hired more than 5,193 employees, and raised over $1.49B in capital. The mHUB Product Impact Fund is a $15M venture fund that invests in seed and early-stage physical product companies from around the world who participate in mHUB’s 6-month long, hands-on accelerator programs. To date, mHUB has invested in 36 startups across sustainable manufacturing, climate and energytech and medtech.