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MANCHESTER, NH – The ReGen Valley Tech Hub—a growing biofab consortium in Manchester’s Millyard led by the Advanced Regenerative Manufacturing Institute (ARMI) that aims to be the hub for creating and growing human tissue and organs in the United States—is one of the 31 inaugural Tech Hubs designated by U.S. Dept. of Commerce across the country in October.
It’s the latest coup for ARMI and the city’s growing biofab cluster of companies. The designation follows a $44 million federal grant awarded to the biofabrication cluster that includes ARMI’s bio-fab program, BioFabUSA, in 2022 and will make the consortium eligible for millions of dollars in federal grants next year.
“We’re proud to be leading this Tech Hub consortium,” says ARMI’s COO Jennifer MacDonald. “And we’re grateful for the federal, state, local and community support we’re receiving.”
The Tech Hubs Program—overseen by the U.S. Economic Development Administration—aims to strengthen U.S. economic and national security with investments in regions across the country. ReGen Valley’s designation as a Tech Hub is part of the first phase of the program intended to create globally competitive innovation centers. Designated Tech Hubs will be eligible to apply for up to $75 million in investment.
MacDonald says applications for startup labs have tripled since ARMI received the $44 million in federal funding last year through the Build Back Better Challenge and that demand is outpacing current resources. “We welcome the challenge of finding more resources, and we hope the next round will serve those needs,” she says, adding that recipients of the next round of federal funding will be notified by next spring or summer. “It’s really important to do this as a unified coalition.”
Specific areas in need of funding include wrap-around services and support as well as lab spaces, MacDonald says. “For these companies to grow, we need more space for them as well as a skilled and capable workforce. We want to include all those who want to be part of this community,” she says, adding this means addressing challenges like affordable housing, transportation services and child care. “Growing these companies is powerful for the economic growth, fulfilling careers and economic security of our health care system.”
In a statement related to ReGen’s Tech Hub designation, U.S. Sen. Maggie Hassan says, “The biofabrication work happening in Manchester—powered in part by the bipartisan CHIPS and Science Act—has the potential to be a game changer for how we manage chronic diseases and traumatic injuries.”
For more information, visit eda.gov/funding/programs/regional-technology-and-innovation-hubs/2023/ReGen-Valley-Tech-Hub or armiusa.org.
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