A biotechnology business based in Portland is one of six startups chosen for a sport and health technology incubator program in Florida.

Justin Hafner, a University of Maine graduate who is CEO and co-founder of KinoTek, will spend the winter and early spring in Orlando as part of a six-month accelerator program sponsored by the LEAD Lake Nona Sports & Health Tech Academy.

Hafner said the competitive application process began in February and included 442 startups from 44 countries. KinoTek, which pivoted away from sports applications and toward physical therapy when the pandemic helped show the need for telehealth services, is the only company from New England selected for the 2020-21 cohort.

Lake Nona is located in southeast Orlando and designed as a smart city with a cluster of life science companies, autonomous vehicles and Verizon 5G broadband capability. The academy provides advice, workshops, mentorship, industry connections and capital investment.

“It’s really cool,” Hafner said. “This place is ground zero for medical innovation. We might set up an affiliate office down there if everything goes well and we build strong enough connections.”

KinoTek currently has six employees and is headquartered in Monument Square.

“We are really impressed by KinoTek,” said Christoph Sonnen, CEO and co-founder of LEAD, in a news release. “We believe their team – a great group of bright former collegiate athletes who have experienced the pain points they are trying to solve – has what it takes to bring their vision to life and become leaders in the health and human movement market. We are very excited to have them on board.”

Hafner, a varsity swimmer during his time in Orono, said he appreciates the honor of representing the state and region.

“As the first New England company ever selected, we hope to open the door for future promising local startups,” he said, “and demonstrate how Maine is a force to be reckoned with in the global startup ecosystem.”


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