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New business accelerator to target health and fitness technology companies (Johns Hopkins University)

The Baltimore Sun

July 13, 2017


A new startup accelerator program based at the Johns Hopkins University’s FastForward East will target companies developing health and fitness technologies.

Hopkins is teaming up with the University of Maryland, Plank Industries, Brown Advisory and the Abell Foundation to launch the 16-week program, called M-1 Ventures, in September.

“I see all these accelerators out there and they’re cool,” said Paul Singh, an angel investor who will lead the program. “But particularly when it comes from an investor’s standpoint, I think what a lot of these companies need is a vertical accelerator.”

By “vertical accelerator,” Singh means one that is focused on a particular topic area — in this case, health and fitness technology — rather than offering general business services.

“By focusing this accelerator on connected health and fitness, M-1 Ventures takes advantage of our regional strengths to provide startups in this business vertical with a clearer path to success,” Christy Wyskiel, a senior adviser to the president of the Johns Hopkins University and leader of Johns Hopkins Technology Ventures, said in a statement.

Maryland has long been known for its strengths in health and medicine, and many of the companies coming out of Hopkins and the University of Maryland are built on health or medical research.