Microsoft and the Green Bay Packers are teaming up for a unique partnership designed to spur innovation and economic growth across Wisconsin’s Fox River Valley.
The tech giant and NFL franchise today announced TitletownTech, a new hub located at the Packers’ Titletown District near Lambeau Field that will open next fall and serve home to an accelerator and lab space for companies and entrepreneurs.
Startups that join the accelerator will spend 18 weeks in the program and have access to a venture capital fund supported by both Microsoft and the Packers, which are each committing $5 million to TitletownTech over the next five years. All profits and capital returns from the fund will be donated to philanthropy and economic development.
“Titletown has gained a tremendously impactful partner in Microsoft,” Green Bay Packers CEO Mark Murphy said in a statement. “Economic development is the key to our region’s future, and Microsoft, with its array of tools and expertise will help grow new businesses as well as assist our existing companies to use technology to realize greater success.”
The partnership will bring together the Packers’ influence and engagement around the Green Bay region — it is the only community-owned NFL franchise — with Microsoft’s technology tools and knowledge. Microsoft, which will also send employees to TitletownTech to mentor the companies participating in the program, is participating as part of its new TechSpark program, which creates economic development partnerships with rural and smaller cities in six states initially: North Dakota, Texas, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
In a statement, Microsoft President Brad Smith said that the partnership will serve as “a model for fostering economic development in other parts of the country.”