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23 November 2017

Coticchia to leave Pitt’s Blast Furnace

Greg Coticchia, director of University of Pittsburgh’s accelerator Blast Furnace, has decided to step down on November 30, though he will remain an adjunct professor at the institution.

Author: Thierry Heles, editor

Greg Coticchia (pictured), the director of University of Pittsburgh’s seed-stage accelerator Blast Furnace, is stepping down on November 30 and leaving the Innovation Institute, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported yesterday.

Coticchia will however remain with the university, continuing in his position as adjunct professor at Katz Graduate School of Business. He has worked at the school since 2005.

He will also continue to act as an entrepreneur-in-residence, supporting students and their startups as well as advocating for the ecosystem.

Blast Furnace was established in 2015 as part of the Innovation Institute, a commercialisation arm of Pittsburgh that was set up two years earlier. The accelerator has accompanied 100 projects to date, 36 of which have been turned into full-fledged companies.

Coticchia said: "I'm an entrepreneur. I have done 14 startups and founded four. I am a builder, creator and inventor. I am not an operator. I think the Innovation Institute is in a different phase of its life.

“We have had incredible success, more than we ever thought we'd have. It has been a great ride.”

– Image courtesy of University of Pittsburgh

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