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Two Rochester area firms among the winners at state Innovation Summit  

Rochester-area firms Photonect Interconnect Solutions Inc. and K-Neesio LLC were among the winners of FuzeHub’s 2022 Jeff Lawrence Innovation Fund Commercialization Competition. 

The sixth installment of the Commercialization Competition was held earlier this week at the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center as part of the NYS Innovation Summit.  

The competition awarded a total of $500,000 – the largest payout since the program inception – to nine entrepreneurs from across New York who pitched their ideas before a live audience and a panel of four expert judges from the economic development community. 

The local winners were: 

  • Photonect Interconnect Solutions, which was awarded $50,000. The company is creating a laser attach machine which connects optical fibers to photonic chips using fusion splicing with a patented adapter integrated into the photonic chip. The machine improves device performance by four times and decreases the speed of manufacturing by 10 times leading to a cost savings of 50 percent per connection, and 
  • K-Neesio, which was awarded $25,000. The business manufactures a bracing system for treatment of anterior knee pain, called NuNee. K-Neesio plans to grow its existing manufacturing capacity in the Finger Lakes, expand their clinical marketing and sales efforts nationally and harden the product for use in the military and contact sports. 

The grand prize winner was Syracuse-based Farm to Flame Energy Inc., which received $150,000. The business repurposed a steam turbine to generate electricity through a smokeless-odorless and portable biomass electricity generation process.  

“Many previous awardees have achieved significant, sustainable growth and some have even received national recognition,” said Elena Garuc, FuzeHub executive director. “We believe that this year’s winners are in a position to do just as well, if not better, and we are proud to support them in their journey.” 

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