Stafford County Smart Community Testbed and the Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) | In the News
"Stafford County, Va., CTO Michael Cannon has a unique opportunity to help build a downtown from the ground up.
The rapidly growing jurisdiction contains a county seat, also called Stafford, and several years ago, the local government began planning a smart community in the heart of it. In doing so, the county has maintained cybersecurity as a top priority, Cannon said Tuesday during a panel at the Smart Cities Connect Fall Conference and Expo in the suburbs of Washington, D.C.
“It’s not a matter of whether you will get attacked, it’s a matter of when you will get attacked,” Cannon said, emphasizing the importance of regional information sharing and collective defenses.
To achieve its smart community vision, Stafford County partnered with the nonprofit Center for Innovative Technology, headquartered in nearby Richmond, Va. In 2019, the two agreed to establish an initial test bed for technologies as Smart Stafford, the first Internet of Things platform in Virginia. Fully operational as of May, the test bed runs a dozen smart city uses cases, integrating with 5G and other emerging technologies, Canon said."
We are a proud sponsor of this event. Marco Rubin, Senior Investment Director, Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) and Vice Chair of The Launch Place’s Seed Fund Advisory Board joined an esteemed panel of judges for this event.
"The Launch Place received 64 applications for its Ninth Annual Big Launch Challenge Pitch Competition from various start-up companies located in the U.S. and abroad.
The top 10 competitors took the stage and presented their innovative business ideas at the NC Biotechnology Center yesterday.
The winner of this year’s competition is LiRA, inc. who was awarded a $10,000 cash prize..."
The full panel of judges included Elaine Bolle, Lead Venture Partner, Portfolia’s Active Aging and Longevity fund and Investment Chair for RTP Capital; Tim Cartwright, Co-Founder and Partner of Fifth Avenue Family Office, Founder and Chair of the Tamiami Family of Angel Funds, Adrenaline Venture Fund, General Partner; Marco Rubin, Senior Investment Director, Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) and Vice Chair of The Launch Place’s Seed Fund Advisory Board; Louisa Smith, Managing Director, NO/LA Angel Network; and Autumn Visser, Principal, Woods Rogers PLC, The Launch Place’s legal counsel.
New partnership lets RoundlyX customers round up digital assets into gift cards Email Facebook LinkedIn Twitter
CIT GAP Funds Portfolio Company ROUNDLYX
By Elise Franco - Staff Writer
Richmond fintech startup RoundlyX recently inked a partnership with digital ad-tech company Prizeout that will enable its users to round up their change into digital gift cards.
Richmond-based RoundlyX, formerly named Coin Savage, was founded in 2017 by Andrew Elliott and Will Trible to allow cryptocurrency investors to round their daily purchases to the nearest dollar, and apply the amount to their cryptocurrency investments.
Prizeout connects platforms like RoundlyX with brands like Amazon, Starbucks and Airbnb, giving RoundlyX users the chance to round that "spare change" into digital gift cards.
Why Hampton Roads is primed for an uptick in unmanned system operations Email Facebook LinkedIn Twitter
"Often used as a tool to tackle dull, dirty and dangerous jobs, unmanned systems, like drones, may soon be more commonplace in the Hampton Roads area.
“We talk a lot about the art of the possible, there’s so much more that these technologies can do to help us with,” said Tracy Tynan, director of the Virginia Unmanned Systems Center at the Virginia Center for Innovative Technology.
CIT and the Virginia Institute for Space Flight and Autonomy recently launched a program to develop a Hampton Roads-Eastern Shore Unmanned Systems (UxS) Strategic Playbook. The goal of the program is to focus on the continued development and expansion of unmanned ground, aerial, maritime and space technologies.
“We want to be able to demonstrate that these technologies can help us perform tasks more safely, more efficiently, at a lower cost and actually provide us with much better and more accurate data than maybe what our traditional methods have done,” Tynan said..."
Raymond Magee created BloomCatch to help plant parents find and identify the greenery around them. The startup looks to add a personal touch.
"BloomCatch, which is available for iOS and Android users, just received $50,000 in funding from the Center for Innovative Technology’s (CIT) GAP Fund, which makes seed-stage investments in local startups. "
White House Recognizes SCITI Labs program in June 2021 Fact Sheet Addressing the Growing Wildfire Threat
POSTED JUNE 30, 2021 • STATEMENTS AND RELEASES
Use research to improve early detection wildfire sensors.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is also focusing its research agenda on innovations that will improve the Nation’s ability to predict, detect, and control wildfires. Just two weeks ago, DHS Science and Technology announced successful Phase II trials of four prototype early detection wildfire sensors. Through a variety of sampling sensors and advanced algorithms, these technologies, once deployed, will provide early warning to fire-vulnerable communities, ultimately providing valuable time that will aid responders and save lives.
S&T established the SCITI (pronounced “city”) Labs initiative in collaboration with the Center for Innovative Technology, TechNexus and Smart City Works to focus on applying new and existing technologies to public safety and national security needs, with an emphasis on extensive validation and go-to-market support through industry partners.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - S&T Public Affairs - RED BLUFF, CALIFORNIA
The evaluation was conducted during a controlled, prescribed burn at the Dye Creek Preserve near Red Bluff, California, in partnership with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) and The Nature Conservancy. Additional observers included partners from the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services and the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA).
The test was the second phase of S&T’s Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) wildfire sensor technology program, part of the Smart Cities Internet of Things Innovation (SCITI) Labs initiative, which brings together government and private sector partners to identify technologies that meet first responders’ operational needs and ensure the nation’s critical infrastructure remains secure and resilient.
Smart City Internet of Things Innovation (SCITI) Labs - Homepage | Wildfire Video
DHS Science and Technology Directorate's (S&T's) SCITI Labs initiative leverages cutting-edge Smart City and Internet of Things (IoT) technologies to deliver new capabilities to DHS components and to enhance public safety in communities across the country. SCITI brings together key government and private sector partners to identify new and existing technologies that both meet first responders’ operational needs and enhance commercial buildings, ensuring the nation’s critical infrastructure and those who protect it are secure and resilient.
CIT would like to acknowledge and congratulate the Commonwealth Commercialization Fund (CCF) awardees & the CIT GAP Funds portfolio companies who made the DCINNO 50 on Fire List 2021
"It’s time, once again, to single out the Greater Washington companies, investors and players who are setting its startup ecosystem ablaze.
That’s right. We’re unveiling the 50 winners of the Washington Business Journal and DC Inno Fire Awards of 2021. The honorees range from nascent to mature, across industry and geography within the DMV..."
The Virginia Unmanned Systems Center at CIT - In the News
PACKAGE DELIVERY: Teams made great strides on the package delivery front during IPP, and that progress will continue in BEYOND.
The Virginia team, led by the Center for Innovative Technology and with the Virginia Tech Mid-Atlantic Aviation Partnership (MAAP) FAA-designated UAS test site managing the projects, began the first residential drone package delivery program in late 2019 under Wing’s leadership. Drones now deliver goods from Walgreens, packages from FedEx, library books, orders from local restaurants and even Girl Scout cookies to Christiansburg residents, MAAP Director Tombo Jones said.
The deliveries began after about six months of community engagement, Jones said. Citizens had the opportunity to ask questions and voice their concerns, making them comfortable with the drone flights—a key component of both IPP and BEYOND.
What Wing learned through this community outreach will carry over as delivery operations expand, Head of Regulatory Affairs Dallas Brooks said. Collaboration also has been critical, and is the only way to get to the regulations that will make drone delivery viable.
Writen by Nick Serfass, rvatech/CEO
The Commonwealth of Virginia recently announced that 34 small technology-focused businesses in Virginia will receive a total of $3.4 million in Commonwealth Commercialization Fund (CCF) grants to commercialize research in an array of sectors. Five of those companies hold strong ties to greater Richmond. In case you’re wondering who they are and what they do, we have the answers!
Two technology companies in Tysons have each received $100,000 grants as part of a new state initiative intended to support projects that turn research into commercial products or services.
Gov. Ralph Northam announced yesterday (Monday) that Virginia will award $3.4 million in grants to 34 small, technology-focused businesses for the inaugural round of the Commonwealth Commercialization Fund (CCF), which launched in 2020 to help advance promising technology through the development process.
The Tysons-based recipients are the cybersecurity company Onclave Networks, Inc. and Jeeva Informatics Solutions Inc. (JEEVA), which is developing a cloud platform to help medical researchers recruit and work with patients for clinical trials.
The CCF consolidated Virginia’s existing Commonwealth Research Commercialization Fund and Virginia Research Investment Fund. Each of the Fiscal Year 2021 recipients received $100,000 and will provide matching funds.
June 17, 2021 - By John Furner, CEO and President, Walmart U.S.
In our ongoing effort to get customers the items they want, and fast, we know it will take a well-coordinated network of delivery solutions that span the streets, sidewalks and skies. Some of these solutions are still emerging, but they’re already showing encouraging results.
Last year, we partnered with DroneUp, a nationwide drone services provider, to launch trial deliveries of at-home COVID-19 self-collection kits. The trial demonstrated we could offer customers delivery in minutes versus hours. Now, after safely completing hundreds of drone deliveries from Walmart stores, we’re making an investment in DroneUp to continue our work toward developing a scalable last-mile delivery solution.
February 07, 2019 | CIT GAP Funds Invests in DroneUp to Revolutionize Commercial Drone Pilot Services | ‘Mission Match’ platform tracks pilot certification, experience and guarantees qualified pilots are alerted for matching missions
From left to right: Jackson Ward Collective co-founders Kelli Lemon, Rasheeda Creighton and Melody Short - Courtesy of Jackson Ward Collective - Story By Kaitlynn R. Copinger - June 07, 2021
While some progress has been made in diversifying Richmond's startup ecosystem, Black founders say they still lack access to a crucial piece of the puzzle - capital
"Now that the Richmond ecosystem has been talking about the challenges facing Black and other underrepresented founders for more than a year, what’s changed? And — perhaps more importantly — what work remains?"
"Funding: The Crucial Piece"
"...The Center for Innovative Technology, or CIT, launched the Virginia Founders Fund in 2018 and has since directed more than $3 million toward founder who are women, BIPOC and veterans, as well as those located outside of Northern Virginia.
There are aspirational, strategic and programmatic goals throughout the Fiscal Year 2022 operating plan that are dedicated to furthering our diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts - especially in light of the national conversation about systematic racism,” spokeswoman Sara Poole
Last fall, CIT Gap Funds hosted a roundtable event to bring together BIPOC founders to discuss barriers to forming and funding minority-led startups, a discussion that is expected to yield changes going forward..."
"Acoustic lighthouses" broadcast sound to reduce avian collisions with manmade structures | CIT CRCF Awardee | In the News
Funding: This work was supported by the Center for Innovative Technology's Commonwealth Research Commercialization Fund award MF18-029-En (https://www.cit.org/) to JPS, by the Animal Welfare Institute (https://awionline.org/), the Virginia Society of Ornithology (https://www.virginiabirds.org/), the Williamsburg Bird Club (http://williamsburgbirdclub.org/), and the Department of Arts and Sciences at William & Mary to TJB. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
A SpaceX advisor and other industry figures explain why the company's NASA partnership signals a new space age as they prepare for the Artemis mission | CIT GAP Funds Marco Rubin quoted in this article
By 2025, TemperPack wants to be the world’s largest sustainable packaging company. Four years ago, a $12 million investment from SJF Venture marked a turning point to helping the company reach that goal, Powers said.
More early stage funding can help the next clean tech startups take off, he said.
That’s where organizations like the Center for Innovative Technology are playing a role. CIT GAP Funds has made equity investments in 16 early-stage clean tech companies since 2007, investing $50,000 to $500,000 in each company over time, said Marco Rubin, Senior Investment Director...
With recent investment from CIT GAP Funds, the Northern Virginia software company plans to embrace the virtual office trend and boost small businesses.
CIT GAP Funds Portfolio Company recognized by Fast Company - The 10 most innovative dining companies of 2021
From restaurant ordering platforms Tock and Slice to dining innovators like Panera, Chipotle, and White Castle, these companies are feeding the industry with innovation.
Thanks to its comprehensive flight test sites, miles of open roads, a long coastline with access to open water and world-class rocket launch facilities, Virginia is a natural location to support all domains in the unmanned systems (UxS) industry: air, ground, sea and space. Despite a challenging year due to a worldwide health pandemic and the sluggish economy created by the virus, UxS continued to accelerate in Virginia as the industry accomplished many new milestones and achievements.
The project to connect Stafford County like never before is well underway.
Dubbed “Smart City Test Bed,” the project to remake the county into the state’s first-ever 5G-connected community is focused on how to reduce traffic, how to predict and detect flooding, and, maybe someday, guide a tourist to get a juicy hamburger at a locally-owned restaurant.
“Smart is bigger than technology,” said Stafford County Economic Development Director John Holden.
Last summer, the county signed an agreement with the Center for Innovative Technology (CIT), Virginia’s quasi-governmental agency, promising to work together to first blanket the area around the county’s courthouse with 5G wireless technology. That work is happening now.
Richmond-based startup AnswersNow has raised $1.8 million to help expand its online counseling service
A Richmond-based startup company that operates an online platform to help counsel parents of children with autism has raised $1.8 million to expand its services.
AnswersNow, which was founded in 2017, announced Tuesday that it had completed the seed funding round led by the American Family Insurance Institute for Corporate and Social Impact and Virginia’s Center for Innovative Technology.
As a result of the recent growth, Fringe has raised $2.2 million in new funding, in a round led by Sovereign’s Capital, with participation from Felton Group, Manchester Story, the Center for Innovative Technology, and angel investors, including Jaffray Woodriff. As part of this investment, the company also added longtime advisor William Boland, Senior Director of Corporate Development and Strategy at Mission Lane, to its Board of Directors.
A family of funds managed by the Center for Innovative Technology has invested about $1.8 million into Richmond-area startups in recent years.
Through partnerships with Richmond-area groups like Lighthouse Labs, Trolley Ventures, 1717 Innovation Center, Virginia Commonwealth University and Startup Virginia, CIT GAP Funds is “actively cultivating a growing pipeline,” said Managing Director Tom Weithman.
Stafford’s Smart City is beginning to materialize.
(Updated at 11:55 p.m.) More than 100 people have signed up to compete in Virginia’s inaugural Smart City Challenge, and organizers expect more to join in the coming weeks.
The proceedings kicked off on Saturday (Jan. 23) with remarks from Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam and panel discussions on how technology could be used to address societal challenges, from COVID-19 and natural disasters to the availability of healthy food and efficiency of traffic lights.
The month-long competition will conclude on Feb. 18 when participants pitch projects designed to improve modern communities by tackling issues in housing, transportation, health, education, and other sectors.
Named Virginia’s most active investor by CB Insights for the past six years, CIT GAP Funds’ investments have helped create more than 6,500 new jobs in the Commonwealth in the last 15 years, it reported this month... By Michelai Graham / STAFF
CIT Press 2020-2021