Morrisville Start Up

Morrisville Start Up helps connect budding entrepreneurs with area businesses and experts with a main focus on high-tech, bio, software, product development and similar industries. 

Activities include regularly scheduled networking events, information-sharing through social media outlets and the HOTTovation "business percolator" which provides meeting space, strong mentoring and connections upon completion of the program.

For more details regarding these programs, events and services, visit

Gold Sponsor

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Silver Sponsor


Start-up companies have unique challenges.  To help new businesses in Morrisville survive and thrive, the Morrisville Innovation Foundation has launched a program to attract and support entrepreneurial growth in Morrisville.

The Morrisville Start Up program will focus on building a support community for businesses across the spectrum.  The community structure will include networking and information-sharing events with an educational component targeted to entrepreneurs.  The program has also instituted a “percolator” called HOTTovation to help give great ideas a chance to grow into businesses. HOTTovation provides an office with meeting space, strong mentoring and connections upon graduation from the program.

Morrisville Start Up is proud to partner with:

Gold Sponsor


Meet the 2018 HOTTovation Entrepreneurs:

Click on the company names above to learn more about these great start ups and follow their progress!

What is HOTTovation?

The HOTTovation program is a startup “percolator” program charged with coaching and mentoring entrepreneurs with innovative and cutting-edge technologies. Given Morrisville’s resources and talent experienced in the life sciences, advanced manufacturing, and high-technology industries, HOTTovation was designed to support entrepreneurs developing the technology of tomorrow. The HOTTovation name stems from Morrisville’s role in the region as the “Heart Of The Triangle,” or HOTT for short. The Morrisville Innovation Foundation, a charitable arm of the Morrisville Chamber of Commerce, operates the HOTTovation program.

How does HOTTovation work?

HOTTovation is structured into two phases. First, participants will undergo a two-month Feasibility/Ideation Phase. The first phase is focused on helping entrepreneurs fleshing out their idea, conducting preliminary market research for feasibility, evaluating high-level paths to commercialization. Participants will work one-on-one with experienced coaches and mentors during this phase. At the end of the first phase, participants will present a short presentation on their results and future steps to success to the HOTTovation startup committee for constructive feedback and evaluation.

The second phase, named the Development Phase, takes a deeper dive into furthering the business concept. This phase will include in-depth market research and analysis, continuing technology development, researching and evaluating industry-specific business models, and ultimately drafting a commercialization and development plan. The aim of the Development Phase is to provide the foundation needed to aid fundraising efforts after exiting the HOTTovation program.

Throughout the HOTTovation program, participants will be provided with free workspace for a period of five months. Additionally, participants will receive a free one-year membership to the Morrisville Chamber of Commerce with the opportunity to engage in numerous local networking events. As participants work with their mentors over the course of the HOTTovation program, participants are expected to reach pre-designated milestones and engage in networking and study activities designed to give the entrepreneur’s business a solid foundation.

At the conclusion of HOTTovation, participants that have successfully developed their commercialization and development plans will present at a graduation “pitch” event to an audience of local representatives of the startup community.

Who is HOTTovation for?

HOTTovation welcomes technology-focused new and seasoned entrepreneurs as well as early-stage startups throughout the Triangle that could benefit from the coaching, mentoring, and resources provided. Entrepreneurs come from a broad range of backgrounds, experiences, and stages in life. HOTTovation is designed for industry professionals that are developing some type of technology, whether in the life sciences, advanced manufacturing, or high-technology industries. Entrepreneurs developing biomedical technology, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, agricultural technology, B2B software development, or electronics manufacturing are just a sample of the participants that can benefit from the HOTTovation program. Lastly, participants are not required to be located in Morrisville.

HOTTovation details:

  • HOTTovation Information Session is March 20 (see below for additional details)
  • Applications deadline is March 31, 2018, at 5 pm
  • Interviews conducted April 10 – 12, 2018
  • Accepted entrepreneurs will be notified by April 20, 2018
  • HOTTovation begins May 15, 2018
  • HOTTovation ends October 16, 2018, with BizPitch Event and Networking Social

Additional dates to note:

  • Phase 1 runs May 15 – July 4, 2018
  • Phase 2 runs July 5 – October 9, 2018
  • Required HOTTovation group meetings take place the 3rd Tuesday of each month, May – October 2018

Click here to complete the HOTTovation Application

For questions about HOTTovation, please contact Sarah Gaskill at 919.463.7159.


Check out our past HOTTovation Entrepreneurs:

2017 Cycle

2016 Cycle

2015 Cycle

2014 Cycle 

Click on the company names above to learn more about these great start ups and see where they are now!


I participated in the inaugural HOTTovation program and I can say it has been key to the success of my start up Dignify Therapeutics. The mentoring and connections laid the foundation and my company has successfully raised $12 million in grants and investments. I highly recommend this program. 

Ed Burgard
Founder, Dignify Therapeutics

Entrepreneur and Small Business Resources

This web page provides a list of local, state and national resources for start ups and small businesses. Please take advantage of programs and services offered to help your business succeed.