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Past Projects

Product Development and Commercialization

Small- to mid-sized manufacturing enterprises (SMMEs), both defense and commercial, face unique obstacles in the marketplace, which is why systems of innovation must be established through workplace culture and leadership that ensure success. This report serves as a roadmap of multiple systems across defense and commercial enterprises, from Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) to small startups. The roadmap was constructed by researching OEM’s implementation of well-known lean principles and concepts, entrepreneur’s product commercialization processes, and innovation processes that some small and medium-sized enterprises and support organizations have adopted. The goal is to outline best-practice models that small- and medium-sized manufacturing enterprises (SMMEs) interested in product development and commercialization growth may employ. This research was supported using Federal funds under award 06-49-06019 from the Economic Development Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce.

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LCCC Innovation Fund Report

Entrepreneurship is a crucial aspect of economic development; without new products and services economies cannot transform or flourish. Lorain County Community College, in conjunction with the Lorain Chamber of Commerce, the Lorain County Commissioners, area universities and other local entities, discovered that in order to revitalize the economies of Lorain County and Northeast Ohio a culture of entrepreneurship had to be created. To help solve this problem, LCCC and these local organizations banded together to found the Innovation Fund of Northeast Ohio (IF-NEO) as a means of providing early stage, pre-seed, funding so that entrepreneurs could build and prove their business concepts. IF-NEO built upon the coaching and advisory services of LCCC’s Great Lakes Innovation and Development Enterprise (GLIDE). Ten years have passed since the creation of IF-NEO within GLIDE, and as the economy of Northeast Ohio has changed and evolved, so too has the business ecosystem that provides support for the region’s budding entrepreneurs. The Ohio Manufacturing Institute at The Ohio State University was contracted by the LCCC Foundation to analyze the effectiveness and assess the impact of the IF-NEO model and the role it plays in stimulating entrepreneurship. This report examines the purpose of IF-NEO, its relationship with GLIDE and other parts of Northeast Ohio’s entrepreneurial support system, how IF-NEO fits into the lifecycle of start-ups intending to become high-growth businesses, its performance measures, and finally the structure of its financing.

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Defense Manufacturing Assistance Program

OMI is Ohio's lead PI organization on phase two of a $2.24M Department of Defense Office of Economic Adjustment grant to assist companies affected by defense spending cuts. Companies are connecting to vetted third-party solution providers, including MEPs, to conduct product diversification, market research, technology commercialization, and workforce system projects. Community economic development projects, including an economic gardening project in Ashtabula County, have been conducted to build the strength of the surrounding regions. Program management includes making sure that company and community project deliverables are completed within a 6-9 month window, with completed impact statements due in 12-18 months.

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