UArizona Center for Innovation Wins Soft Landings Designee of Year

The University of Arizona Center for Innovation has announced its win as the Soft Landings Designee of the Year which was announced at the 36th International Conference on Business Incubation, hosted by the International Business Innovation Association.

UACI earned the InBIA Soft Landings designation in 2020 after proving its capability to meet the high-level and multi-faceted accommodations needed to ensure that international companies experience a supportive foundation when conducting business in a foreign country. UACI is one of only 50 entrepreneur support organizations that have earned the coveted Soft Landings designation.  

UACI won the award for providing a “soft landing” experience, meaning international businesses have the necessary accommodations for a smooth entry into the United States. UACI works with the businesses to introduce them to local community leaders, connect them to governmental officials, inform them of the resources and tools available through the UArizona, and go the extra mile to make their business a success.   

UACI is a leader in the entrepreneurial ecosystem, currently assisting 81 startups and housing four incubator outposts across Southern Arizona, with a new outpost opening soon at the UA Tech Park at The Bridges. “UACI serves startups from all over the globe. Whether you’re from our backyard or across an ocean UACI is here to empower your business and help you scale up,” said UACI Executive Director Eric Smith. “We’ve been serving a strong vibrant community of innovators for a long time now, and we are eager to continue sharing knowledge and supporting startups wherever their location.”  

The UACI Soft Landings Program has already impacted hundreds of global entrepreneurs and served 20 international startups. Since 2019, four international companies who have worked with UACI have moved to Southern Arizona or setup a U.S. subsidiary in the region.   

The ICBI36 conference, which was held in Atlanta, brought together entrepreneur support professionals from across the world to connect, explore new strategies, share best practices, learn about current trends, gather resources, and celebrate successes with awards. Peer-led sessions focused on relevant topics, expert keynotes shared inspiring insights, and local ecosystem leaders showcased their programs at the conference. UACI was an active contributor to the conference serving on three panel sessions, attending executive board meetings, and moderating the keynote. 

Pictured Above – from left, Krista Covey, President of First Flight Ventures and Chair of the InBIA Board of Directors, Eric Smith, Executive Director of the University of Arizona Center for Innovation, Mark Farmer, Economic Development Manager for Gwinnett County Government and Chair of the InBIA Awards Committee, Charles Ross, CEO of InBIA. 
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