NH High Tech Council, Alpha Loft to merge effortsBy MICHAEL COUSINEAU
New Hampshire Union Leader
January 16. 2018 11:44PM
MANCHESTER — Alpha Loft, which helps startup companies mature, will be folded into the New Hampshire High Tech Council by year’s end, officials announced Tuesday.
Merging the two nonprofits “will make for a strong tech ecosystem,” said Matt Cookson, the council’s executive director.
The short-term plan will bring more integrated programs between the organizations.
“The next step is to take a much closer examination on how we can further integrate and really serve companies for the full spectrum — from startup to large mature entities that help drive our economies,” Cookson said.
Alpha Loft, which offers programs and support to help accelerate the growth of startup companies, will maintain its offices in Manchester and Portsmouth.
Alpha Loft lost “six figures” worth of financial support last year from the University of New Hampshire but was never in danger of failing, according to Mark Kaplan, the former CEO of Alpha Loft.
It was “more of a matter of finding the right future,” said Kaplan, who will remain part time for three months in an advisory role.
“We actually have also been through a strategic planning process, so there’s some thought on where the organization can go and additional programs that could be developed,” Kaplan said.
Alpha Loft’s Accelerate NH program gives chosen startup founders mentorship, support systems, weekly programming, workspace and cloud credits.
The Manchester-based high-tech council supports education, research, innovation and economic development efforts. Its work includes organizing a product of the year competition and hosting an entrepreneur forum.
“The future value of Alpha Loft is that programming piece,” said Cookson, who doesn’t expect any change in Alpha Loft’s programming this year.