WATERVILLE — The Harold Alfond Institute for Business Innovation at Thomas College and Central Maine Growth Council will again partner with the Maine Center for Entrepreneurs to host the Top Gun business accelerator program in February. This year’s program will be hosted online and is the third year that Thomas College and Central Maine Growth Council have hosted the program for the Waterville region, according to a news release from the college.

This year’s Central Maine Top Gun program will consist of seven companies ranging from a software company to a high-end pizza dough manufacturing company. The entrepreneurs selected for participation in the program completed a rigorous application process that included pitching their business and one-on-one interviews with program staff and volunteer business leaders.

One of the program’s hallmarks is providing each business with a mentor and this activity will take place before the program begins in early February. Top Gun consists of hands-on training and group learning exercises taught by subject matter experts in finance, business law, marketing, and other critical aspects of business development.

“Entrepreneurship is perhaps the signal most important aspect of any economy. Being able to consistently start and grow companies is not only beneficial to the entrepreneur, it creates jobs for the region and ultimately wealth for the community,” said Mike Duguay, executive director of the Harold Alfond Institute for Business Innovation. “The Top Gun program is one of the most innovative and hands-on business assistance programs that entrepreneurs have access to within Maine and we’re truly honored to be able to host it again this year.”

Duguay also said, “This year’s group of entrepreneurs are especially innovative in their respective industries. I’m personally excited to see how we may be able to help them scale their ventures as quickly as possible in order for them to establish themselves in their niche and secure market share.”

Businesses participating in the Waterville program include: HusseyMedical LLC, The Cubby, SledTRX, The Good Crust, SubLocal, Wela and The Acadian.

For more information, visit thomas.edu or contact MacKenzie Riley Young at [email protected] or 207-859-1313.

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