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Our History

Innovation Center Exterior View

The Ohio University Innovation Center

The Innovation Center is a business incubator that provides resources and guidance to startup companies located in Athens and the surrounding region. Created in 1983 by visionaries at Ohio University, the center was the first university-based business incubator in the State of Ohio and just the 12th in the United States.
Today, the Innovation Center is located in its custom-built 36,000 square foot facility on the west side of Athens and is a key player in fueling the economic development of Southeast Ohio. The center supports its startup clients with a considerable range of resources including professional office space, biotechnology laboratories, meeting space, onsite executive coaching, access to an expansive network of experts and key office amenities like front desk reception, a fully-equipped business center, high-speed internet, USPS address, parking, and more!
The Innovation Center has received numerous honors and recognitions for its work. Some of the most recent accolades include:
  • #3 Ranked University-Based Incubator in the United States, 2015-2017, UBI Global

  • 2016 Rural Incubator of the Year, International Business Innovation Association (InBIA)

  • 2019 Best Support of Entrepreneurial Innovation, Appalachian Partnership for Economic Growth (APEG)

  • 2019 Rural-Based Entrepreneurship Center of the Year, InBIA

  • 2019 Randall M. Whaley Incubator of the Year, InBIA

The Innovation Center is part of a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem with many University and regional collaborators, including a joint effort established in 2015 with TechGROWTH Ohio to bolster client services.  
Interested in becoming a client? Want to know more? Get started by contacting Client Services Manager and Executive Coach Erin Rennich today.
Innovation Center