EnPower Graduates from Arizona’s Venture Ready Accelerator

October 14, 2021

As an Awardee of the 2020 Arizona Innovation Challenge (AIC), EnPower participated in the year-long Venture Ready Accelerator, a mentor program that connects top Arizona startups with coaches, resources, and a community of innovators. The Venture Ready Graduation Showcase was held at the new Phoenix Biomedical Campus in Downtown Phoenix on October 14, 2021. The event included a networking lunch and final pitches from the ten Arizona startups in the 2020 AIC cohort.

The Venture Ready Accelerator included a two-week bootcamp with 500 Startups, one-on-one coaching, and five panel presentations, each aimed at refining the startup’s business model, objectives, and commercialization plans. Key benefits for EnPower were the dedicated mentors and an understanding of how to work with Arizona stakeholders and policymakers. 

Dedicated Mentorship

The Arizona Commerce Authority has assembled a world-class team of mentors, coaches, and Entrepreneurs-in-Residence to support the Venture Ready Accelerator. “One aspect of the AIC experience that was particularly rewarding to me was the relationships developed with my mentors, Eric Miller and George Jones, who gave of their time so generously with me and with members of my team that I felt could benefit from their wisdom and experience,” said Annette Finsterbusch, President & CEO of EnPower.

Connecting Arizona Innovators

The Venture Ready Accelerator connects startups with statewide organizations and companies, ultimately cultivating a strong innovation ecosystem that supports startups through all stages of development. “Overall, the greatest takeaway from this program has been a deeper understanding of how best to work with those in Arizona that are so eager to work with us and see us grow and flourish here in Arizona,” said Annette.

Creating an Innovation Ecosystem

The graduation event was the first in-person event since the beginning of the pandemic. In addition to the 2019 and 2020 AIC cohorts, the Arizona Commerce Authority also hosted two virtual accelerator programs during the pandemic for early-stage startups. Founders, mentors, and organizers from all four programs were honored at the 2021 graduation. It was a celebration of the perseverance that the startup community has embodied over the last 18 months and a tribute to the strong network of innovators being fostered in Arizona.

“We look forward to continuing to engage with the AIC network and are honored to be part of this growing ecosystem that supports and celebrates founders and technology companies in Arizona.”

– Annette Finsterbusch, President & CEO