February 23, 2024

Innovate Biz Pro

Innovation that Brightens the Future

NCET Biz Tips: Meet the startups executing innovative products at gener8tor showcase

3 min read

Since I started supporting the startup community with gener8tor, I’ve been continually impressed by the talent and innovation happening in Reno. I meet new builders every day who are taking the leap into entrepreneurship and turning their ideas into a reality. Reno is attracting startups from all over the world. Companies want to operate here, and locals are continuously executing on new, scalable ideas. It is clear to me why gener8tor chose to partner with Nevada.

gener8tor is a certified B corporation and is currently operating in 41 communities across the country, Reno now among them.

The main opportunity offered through gener8tor is a nationally ranked accelerator program. Accepted startups receive $100K and 12 weeks of mentorship-driven programming. gener8tor differentiates itself from other accelerator programs by only accepting five companies per cohort. This allows for a concierge experience where program content and energy are focused and tailored to meet the needs of the five selected startups each year.

Gener8tor partners with the local community combining the best of both worlds: local professionals, industry experts, ecosystem builders, and investors with the support of national corporate partners, venture capitalists and mentors. The program works to support entrepreneurs and startups who have gone through gener8tor’s accelerator programs and have to date raised $2 billion-plus in cumulative funding.

When selecting startups for the program, I look for companies that have the potential for scalable economic impact and are primed for growth. The startups can be at either pre or post-revenue stages and are operating a Minimally Viable Product (MVP). The main areas I evaluate are traction, market opportunity and team. In particular, I place a heavy emphasis on the founding team. I admire dedicated founders who are passionate about the problem they are solving. Building a company is not easy. Determination goes a long way toward a startup’s success.

The most recent application round for the Reno program was very competitive with over 300 impressive candidate applications. While it was difficult to narrow the pool to five companies, I’m excited to announce the second cohort of companies that have received investment and are participating in the Reno program. They are Reno-based infrastructure inspection robotics AIR Corp; Reno-based plant health innovation Drain Drawer Pots; Vancouver-based custom technical outdoor apparel MADE; Fort Lauderdale-based virtual sizing technology Nailstry; and Henderson-based telecommunications platform Phone2. All companies are either based in Nevada or have expanded their operations to the state.

To celebrate and acknowledge the progress these companies have made in Reno, gener8tor is hosting a showcase event for investors, community partners and the public. I invite you to join us at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 11 at the Nevada Museum of Art where the founders will pitch their companies and showcase their accomplishments.

If you are interested in learning more about the gener8tor investment accelerator program in Reno, visit the gener8tor Reno-Tahoe website ( or reach out to Jessica Halsey at [email protected]. Those interested in mentoring these companies or getting involved in other ways are also encouraged to connect.

NCET is a member-supported nonprofit organization that produces educational and networking events to help people explore business and technology. More info at NCET.org.

Jessica Halsey is program manager of gener8tor’s Reno-Tahoe accelerator.


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