Octane Foundation for Innovation


Octane Foundation for Innovation (OFI) is committed to making resources, capital, and mentorship available to tech & medtech startups, as well as underserved members of our community. Our mission is to drive innovation by elevating the strength and diversity of the region as a whole.

Women Leaders of Octane

Non-Profit Accelerator

LaunchPad SBDC

STEM Fellows

NextGen Leaders

Our Goals


Formation & Growth of Tech and MedTech Companies

Through Octane’s Non-Profit Accelerator and LaunchPad SBDC Accelerator, Octane is committed to creating high-paying jobs throughout the region by helping companies grow and scale in Southern California 


Promotion of Economic Inclusion & Opportunity for Underrepresented Populations

Identify and equip the founders and operators that have been traditionally underrepresented in the startup funding ecosystem.  These founders are invited to join Octane’s specially-curated ecosystem where they have visibility to investors and can gain strategic connections.

Infusion of Capital into the Regional Economy

As companies form and grow in Southern California, Octane is committed to impacting the amount of capital infused into the local economy with a unique emphasis on those communities not commonly targeted by the entrepreneurship and innovation ecosystem.

Creation & Retention of High-Paying Jobs

Octane is committed to long-term job creation and has pledged to create 22,000+ jobs by 2025 and 55,000+ jobs by 2030.  We want to ensure job creation in communities often overlooked by the entrepreneurship & innovation ecosystem.
The Octane Foundation for Innovation is funded in part through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration as well as through public and private agreements. Funding is not an endorsement of any product, opinion, or service. All programs are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis.
Octane Foundation for Innovation is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Tax ID# 90-0176361

Octane Foundation for Innovation has 5 initiatives to bring about positive change in Orange County. 

Women Leaders of Octane

An Unacceptable Disparity

Women Leaders of Octane launched in 2018 after seeing the disparity in funding offered to women-owned and operated startups – only 6% of total venture capital and 13.1% of total deals (according to a study by Pitchbook) went to women-owned/operated companies. This means that not are women founders less likely to receive funding, but when they do, they receive about half the funding dollars!

This overall inequality is deepened when combined with the lack of women on public boards and the lower rate of hiring and promotion for women. We also found that these numbers more adversely impacted women of color and only emphasized the necessity of creating this initiative.

See our goals below.

We Want More…


More Women-Led Startups

We want to increase the number of women-operated companies in SoCal that graduate from Octane’s Accelerator, LaunchPad SBDC.


More Funding

We want to increase the statistic of women- funded companies and increase capital available to women owned/operated companies in SoCal.

More Support

We want to support women in their career development and growth by providing access to resources and power networking opportunities.


More Women on Boards

We want to connect women leaders with public and private board opportunities in Southern California and beyond.

Non-Profit Accelerator

Increasing Impact for Local Non-Profits

We applied our award-winning LaunchPad SBDC Accelerator process to non-profits to further their impact in the community and increase their sustainability.
We focus on non-profits that benefit STEM programs, especially those that deliver education and resources to underrepresented communities.
The Non-Profit Accelerator is made possible with a grant through the Edwards Lifesciences Foundation.

Applications for our next Cohort will open in Fall 2021.

We’re Looking for an Increase…


Increasing Impact

Using our LaunchPad SBDC Accelerator process, we can help non-profits make a greater difference in the community.


Increasing in Grants & Funding

LaunchPad SBDC helps companies prepare to meet with investors. Similarly, the Non-Profit Accelerator program helps non-profits in their strategy and pitch to apply for grants and funding.


Increasing Sustainability

We believe that non-profits that benefit our community should be able to support themselves as they accomplish their mission. The Non-Profit Accelerator enables non-profits to achieve long-term sustainability.
Our Cohorts

Read more about our recently graduated cohort here.

Cohort 1

Cohort 2

Cohort 3

STEM Fellows

Entrepreneurship for Underrepresented Populations

The Octane STEM Fellows identifies high potential students from a diverse background, who are STEM majors with an inclination towards entrepreneurship. This program features training of basic entrepreneurship leadership concepts as well as peer interaction and provides access to Octane programming along with the opportunity to attend one of Octane’s leading conferences.

The inaugural year of this program is made possible by funding from Broadcom Foundation.

Offering Greater Access


Access to Networking

To offer greater access to groups who have been traditionally underrepresented in the entrepreneurship & innovation ecosystem, this program allows students to expand their contacts and create a network to support their future entrepreneurial pursuits.

Access to Innovation

Keeping promising young talent and innovation here in Orange County is essential as Orange County continues to grow.


Access to Talent

We want to increase the talent pool for existing companies in the Orange County network by creating opportunities for STEM students.
What We’re Doing About It

Networking Events

Creating a cohort of future colleagues and entrepreneurs is essential in building a successful future. This combined with building a network of mentors and supporters sets the foundation for future success.

Entrepreneurial Leadership Skills

Learning from people who have done it before! Access to leaders in our Octane Network allows exposure and mentorship opportunities.

Attending Programs & Conferences

Octane conferences and programs allow the chance to network and engage with business leaders as well as putting skills to practice in making connections.

LaunchPad SBDC Accelerator

A Top Five SBDC Accelerator in the Nation

Our award-winning tech and medtech accelerator, LaunchPad SBDC is a pro bono service, funded by the SBA. Our proven process offers a strengthened capital funding strategy, actionable feedback, access to an influential network, and our proprietary predictive analytics.

How We Accelerate Success


Strategic Mentorship

We have a panel of experts and advisors as well as our own knowledgeable LaunchPad SBDC team to guide you in your pitch and capital strategy.


Analytics & Feedback

Following your pitch to our expert panel, we provide actionable feedback for you and your team as well as invaluable analytics to guide you as you prepare to pitch to investors.

Networking Connections

The Octane network covers a wide range of industries, expanding far beyond Orange County. Connections you make through LaunchPad can build your success.

Join Our Alumni

Our Alumni are a network of successful entrepreneurs. LaunchPad SBDC Alumni can also access growth and capital resources through  Octane Enterprise Solutions. 

Success Stories

LaunchPad SBDC Alumni Leading the Way During the Healthcare Crisis

This past week, Octane and the LaunchPad SBDC Accelerator have contacted our LaunchPad Alumni to determine how they are impacting the community through their technologies.

Success Series: PatientFi

Todd Watts, CEO of PatientFiwinner of the LaunchPad SBDC People’s Choice Award took the time to discuss the growth of his company, his experience through the LaunchPad accelerator, and the success that he is seeing with PatientFi.

Intellivsion Launches Pre-Order of Amico

With the global release of the affordable, family-friendly Amico family entertainment system scheduled later this year, Intellivision launched a limited VIP Edition pre-order program.

Success Series: IntelliStem

Riam Shamma, CEO of IntelliStem, discusses their process with LaunchPad SBDC leading up to MedTech Innovation Forum, and where they see themselves in the future after their win.

NextGen Leaders

Preparing Orange County for the Next Generation of Leaders

Orange County should be a place where you can bring an idea to reality. Southern California has been home to innovation for decades along with a unique culture that intersects arts, science, and technology.

This is part of a developing collaborative effort with other members in the community. 

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April 2023

Octane’s Annual Partner Summit

April 5 @ 11:30 AM - 1:30 PM

The Octane Team would like to invite you to our annual Partner Summit. The virtual Summit will be an opportunity share our high-impact results we have had collectively in the community, thank our current partners, and meet with business colleagues. Please be sure to register for the event to receive the log in information via email. We look forward to seeing you there! REGISTER HERE>>

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Women Leaders of Octane- April 2023 Quarterly Meeting

April 19 @ 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

Please join Women Leaders of Octane for our virtual quarterly meeting, Wednesday, April 19th from 12:00 – 1:00 pm PST, featuring Thought Leader: Anne Mulcahy  In addition to our thought leader, our committee chairs will share progress reports. Our Committees and Committee Chairs: Creating Women-led Businesses & LaunchPad Committee – Marinela Gombosev, SPARK Neuro Funding Committee – Delilah Panio, Toronto Stock Exchange Women on Boards Committee – Joyce Averna, JP Morgan Private Bank Resources & Communications – Nanneke Dinklo Plus, after the WLO Quarterly meeting,…

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May 2023

Tech Innovation Forum 2023

May 10 @ 8:00 AM - May 11 @ 4:35 PM
AV Irvine, 16500 Scientific
Irvine, 92618 United States

Tech Innovation Forum 2023 will focus on the acceleration of innovation in technology. The Forum will concentrate on topics such as the next industrial revolution- the role that Southern California is playing in both climate tech and space, and feature topics related to the investment landscape for emerging and growth companies. Learn more. Register here.

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June 2023

Ophthalmology Tech Forum 2023

June 8 @ 3:30 PM - June 9 @ 1:00 PM
Balboa Bay Resort, 1221 West Coast Highway
Newport Beach, CA 92663 United States

Join industry physicians and top ophthalmologists who are defining the future of the field at Octane’s Ophthalmology Technology Forum (OTF). The event is held annually in Orange County, the center for Ophthalmology in the US. We will be hosting Ophthalmology Tech Forum 2023 as a hybrid experience, which will allow our guests to attend in person or online. Learn more Register here

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July 2023

Women Leaders of Octane – July 2023 Quarterly Meeting

July 19 @ 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

Please join Women Leaders of Octane for our virtual quarterly meeting, Wednesday, July 19th from 12:00 – 1:00 pm PST, featuring Thought Leader: Cynthia West, Ph.D.  In addition to our thought leader, our committee chairs will share progress reports. Our Committees and Committee Chairs: Creating Women-led Businesses & LaunchPad Committee – Marinela Gombosev, SPARK Neuro Funding Committee – Delilah Panio, Toronto Stock Exchange Women on Boards Committee – Joyce Averna, JP Morgan Private Bank Resources & Communications – Nanneke Dinklo Plus, after the WLO Quarterly…

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September 2023

Cardiovascular Tech Summit 2023

September 15 @ 7:30 AM - 8:00 PM
Monarch Beach Resort, 1 Monarch Beach Resort
Dana Point, CA 92629

Octane’s Cardiovascular Tech Summit 2023 will synergize innovative solutions in cardiology with physicians, industry strategics, and investors convening together to advance patient care. The Summit will explore the unmet needs in cardiology, highlight current buying trends of strategics and investors, review current funding models of cardiology innovation, present innovation trends, and showcase top emerging cardiology companies to our ecosystem of strategics and investors.

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High Tech Awards 2023

September 21
AV Irvine, 16500 Scientific
Irvine, 92618 United States

The much-anticipated High Tech Awards celebrate the top innovators, entrepreneurs, and technology leaders in Orange County. Join us for the 2023 High Tech Awards to celebrate and recognize those individuals and companies who make Orange County a center of technology and medical technology innovation.

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October 2023

Octane’s Medical Innovation Forum 2023

October 25 - October 26
Irvine Marriott, 18000 Von Karman Avenue
Irvine, CA 92612 United States
fireside chat

Octane will host our Medical Innovation Forum 2023 as an in-person experience.  Join us in collaborating with industry experts, strategics, physicians, entrepreneurs, and investors who have made significant strides toward an accelerated future in the medical industry.  The Forum will highlight the wide-ranging impact of the most recent medical innovations and how the industry will adapt to enhance patient care.

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