Long Island's first start-up accelerator program officially launched Monday.
LI Tech COMETS, which aims to nurture and grow local start-ups, officially opened its doors as the three participating companies -- Mobitrons, Clerk 123 and InterConnecta -- moved into new office space in Hauppauge.
"This is a trial part for COMETS, and we want to make sure and improve on it," said Peter Goldsmith, the president of the Long Island Software Technology Network. Goldsmith led the effort to create COMETS.
One of the first events following the move-in for the companies is to start a speaker series, in which local experts on a wide range of business topics -- employment, technology, law, finance -- will come in and speak to the start-ups about building their companies, Goldsmith said.
The program, which took applications from August to October, announced the three winners last year. As part of the prize package, the companies receive free office space in the LI Tech Mall in Hauppauge for six months and will have the aid of four mentors who are experts in accounting, law, business operations and technology.
At the end of the six month period, the companies will be able to pitch themselves to the Long Island Angel Network for seed money.
Photo: LI Tech COMETS promoter Peter Goldsmith, second from right, with winners of the first accelerator program. From left, Luis Gonzales of Interconnecta, Dr. Praveen Elak of Mobitrons and Blake Cornell of Clerk 123 Llc. (Nov. 30, 2102)