Ben Franklin News

Ben Franklin Technology Partners Links with World Trade Club

The Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania has announced that the World Trade Club of the Lehigh Valley (WTCLV) has become an affiliate of Ben Franklin TechVentures. TechVentures is an award-winning technology incubator/post incubator facility owned and managed by Ben Franklin that is located on the campus of Lehigh University. The Ben Franklin incubator program has fostered international business activities since its start in 1983. 

Technology, capital, and business opportunities are flowing across international borders with accelerating speed. Early-stage technology companies in other parts of the world continue to seek opportunities in U.S. markets, and companies currently located in the Lehigh Valley are increasingly seeking customers and funding from abroad. 

Ben Franklin clients such as Authentix, originally spun out of the United Kingdom, established themselves in the U.S. in Ben Franklin’s incubator. The company developed new technologies that allow consumer products manufacturers to prevent product piracy. Other European-based companies have also located offices within TechVentures in recent years.
The World Trade Club of the Lehigh Valley was created in the early 1980s by Air Products, Mack Trucks, and Bethlehem Steel to exchange economic information on world activities and conditions. Although the Club has sponsored many events and initiatives over the years, it has  never had a formal base of operations. The TechVentures relationship provides club members with facility services such as conference rooms and state-of-the-art presentation capabilities.   WTCLV members will also be invited to participate in important TechVentures events such as the recent visit by Vice President Joe Biden.

In January 2010, President Obama announced a goal of doubling U.S. exports by the year 2015. This new relationship between Ben Franklin and the World Trade Club of the Lehigh Valley will help foster new international business opportunities for Lehigh Valley technology companies.
About the World Trade Club of the Lehigh Valley
The World Trade Club of the Lehigh Valley is a membership-based business organization that promotes participation and growth in international trade by providing networking, information-sharing, educational opportunities and a global business view for local business professionals.

About the Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania
The Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania is part of a four-center, state-funded economic development initiative that links companies with business and technical experts, universities, funding, and other resources to help them prosper through innovation. The organization’s strategy encompasses three key areas: developing early-stage, technology-oriented companies; helping established manufacturers creatively apply new technologies and business practices; and promoting an innovative community-wide infrastructure that fosters a favorable business environment for high-growth companies. The northeastern center is headquartered on the campus of Lehigh University in Bethlehem.

About Ben Franklin TechVentures
Ben Franklin TechVentures is an award-winning technology-based incubator/post incubator facility that is owned and managed by the Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania, and located on the campus of Lehigh University in Bethlehem. Ben Franklin TechVentures provides resident companies with the support of an experienced incubator staff, the synergy of working in proximity to other early-stage companies, rental costs lower than market rates, flexible floor planning to accommodate specific needs, and access to Lehigh’s facilities, equipment, faculty, and student resources. These factors combine to greatly enhance incubator resident companies’ probability of success.

The facility expansion, Ben Franklin TechVentures2, will add 47,000 square feet to the existing building, and will include wet labs, office/meeting space, and a parking deck. The addition will increase capacity to as many as 40 companies and 200 high-tech jobs, and will be a certified Leadership Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) building.