Strategic Partners

The relationship between academic research institutions and private industry has evolved significantly over time and is even more critical today with the rapid pace of change and the challenges with funding research in today’s economic climate. Universities bring valuable resources to the table: talent, research, and access to physical assets such as specialized equipment and technology.

At the same time, corporations bring real-world problems that need innovative solutions and an opportunity for students and faculty to take a multi-disciplinary approach to solving them. This, in turn, creates a better-prepared pool of talent and source of employment for industry.

These are the strategic partners who engaged early with the 1819 Innovation Hub by co-locating into spaces within the 1819 Building.

Strategic Partners List

Cincinnati Bell

The Cincinnati Bell Innovation Hub fosters collaboration between Cincinnati Bell employees and UC students and faculty, resulting in innovative applications and products that leverage Cincinnati Bell’s deep fiber network and expertise in the region. With more than $800 million invested in its local fiber network — which delivers high-speed internet service to consumers and businesses across the region — Cincinnati Bell is increasing its focus on developing new products to help customers maximize their connections.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for Cincinnati Bell to engage with the University of Cincinnati, which is doing cutting-edge research and producing a pipeline of students who are developing in-demand engineering, marketing, and design skills.” – Cincinnati Bell CEO Leigh Fox

Click here to learn more about Cincinnati Bell.

Cincinnati Insurance Companies

The Cincinnati Insurance Companies vision is to be the best at serving independent agents. To achieve this, they intend to use the 1819 Partnership as a way to create, discover, and test ideas to provide products, services, and expertise that delivers on the needs of their clients. The CIC Innovation Lab @ 1819 will enable access to talent, development of an environment and scalable platform to accelerate innovation, and creation of a culture of innovation with their associates and agencies.

“Gaining access to talent, accelerating the time from ideation to commercialization, developing a platform for innovation that can be leveraged by the entire enterprise, and generating excitement among our associates and agency population around a culture of innovation are the keys to success for us.” – Cincinnati Financial Chief Information Officer John Kellington

Click here to learn more about Cincinnati Insurance Companies.


CincyTech transforms innovation into high performing life science and digital companies in Southwest Ohio. Its highly-skilled team provides advice and capital to entrepreneurs, helps research institutions commercialize technology through startups, and catalyzes investment from individuals and institutions into regional companies, which create jobs, economic vitality and wealth in Southwest Ohio. As the 1819 Venture Lab serves as a pipeline for new startups that will need incubation and further help/involvement from our regional ecosystem, tremendous synergies exist with having CincyTech in the building

“UC is a world-class research institution where ideas and intellectual property abound. UC’s Innovation Agenda and the 1819 Innovation Hub align perfectly with our mission.” – CincyTech CEO Mike Venerable

Click here to learn more about CincyTech.

Edaptive Computing

Dayton-based Edaptive Computing Inc. pioneers innovative solutions for rapid analysis, optimization, and assurance of systems and processes to a variety of U.S. Department of Defense and Commercial Sector customers. In a new partnership with UC’s College of Engineering & Applied Sciences, the woman-owned small business is working with engineering students to help solve real-world problems, offering opportunities for students as well as growing its own pipeline.

Click here to learn more about Edaptive Computing, Inc.


The mission of EPA is to protect human health and the environment. The agency develops and enforces regulations, gives grants, studies environmental issues, sponsor partnerships, teaches people about the environment, and publishes information in order to achieve their mission.

Click here to learn more about the EPA.

Fifth Third Bank

Overview: The bank envisions an evolving creative space in which it will prototype, learn and collaborate with other businesses within the 1819 Innovation Hub. Members of Fifth Third’s innovation team plan to remain headquartered at ONE67, the bank’s innovation center at its downtown campus, but will regularly utilize its 1819 innovation space to work with UC students, faculty and industry partners. Several IT positions will permanently relocate to 1819. 

Click here to learn more about Fifth Third Bank.


FIS is a leading payments provider with unique capability to power global integrated omni-commerce, any payment, anywhere. With industry-leading scale and an unmatched integrated technology platform, FIS offers customers a comprehensive suite of products and services globally, delivered through a single provider. FIS processes over 40 billion transactions annually, supporting more than 300 payment types across 146 countries and 126 currencies. The company is focused on expanding into high-growth markets and customer segments including global eCommerce, integrated payments and B2B.

“If you consider how consumers pay for things and how that is constantly evolving, it means companies like FIS need to be heavily focused on innovation and embrace change or fall behind. That is why the relationship between UC and companies like FIS, Kroger and P&G are so important. It allows us, together, to be ahead of the curve—creating tech and not just consuming it.” - FIS President and Chief Operating Officer Mark Heimbouch

Click here to learn more about FIS.

FlyOhio and Drive Ohio

FlyOhio and DriveOhio are initiatives in collaboration between government, research and private industry partners to build Ohio's infrastructure for smart mobility and to facilitate smart mobility innovations. Rich Granger, managing director of workforce and economic development at DriveOhio, looks forward to UC and the CID to set the pace for a whole statewide series of events. State.

“Innovation and collaboration are pillars as we work to make Ohio the most innovative state in the Midwest. Today’s collaboration between student talent and inventive companies exemplifies the inclusive, connective and purpose-built ecosystem that is transforming our heartland.” - Lt. Gov. Jon Husted

Click here to learn more about FlyOhio and Drive Ohio.

Great American Insurance Group 

Based in Cincinnati, Ohio, the operations of Great American Insurance Group are engaged primarily in property and casualty insurance, focusing on specialty commercial products for businesses. Great American Insurance Company has received an “A” (Excellent) or higher rating from the A.M. Best Company for more than 110 years (most recent rating evaluation of “A+” (Superior) affirmed October 28, 2020). 

Quote: “Investing in people, technology and innovation is critical to our ongoing success. We are honored to join the Cincinnati Innovation District and establish a workspace in UC’s 1819 Innovation Hub to elevate our innovation initiatives and become part of this valuable regional ecosystem.” - Gary J. Gruber, GAIG’s President and Chief Operating Officer

Click here to learn more about Great American Insurance Group.

Include Health

Overview: IncludeHealth is an Ohio-based digital health and performance company delivering next-generation musculoskeletal care and training. Recognized with 28 international innovation and health awards, their proprietary technology is used in orthopedics, neuroscience, pediatric care, senior care, government and general wellness. IncludeHealth will dedicate more than half of its space to a “connected clinic” showcasing its technology. 

“We are excited to enrich our strategic partnerships, form new relationships and engage the UC ecosystem in new ways to drive fantastic opportunities — fueling innovation, new companies and expanding this collaborative in a multitude of ways.” - Ryan Eder Founder and CEO, Include Health

Click here to learn more about Include Health.



Overview: Kao USA Inc. is a leading manufacturer of premium beauty care brands that are recognized around the world for their innovation and quality. The Kao USA Inc. portfolio includes; Jergens® and Curel® hand and body lotions; Biore® facial care; John Frieda® hair care, Ban® antiperspirants, as well as Goldwell, KMS and Oribe professional hair care and Molton Brown products for body and home.  Kao USA plans to use its new innovation center to highlight top innovation initiatives and recruit prospective employees. Kao USA will also work with UC’s Venture Lab — a leading technology accelerator and business incubator — to fast-track and test new ideas. 

"This collaboration with UC and having 1819’s incredibly passionate and energetic resources at our fingertips will create a valuable mechanism that we can leverage to drive strategic and sustainable growth for the future.” - Jesse Grissom, President of Operations for the Kao Americas region.

Click here to learn more about KAO.

Kingsgate Logistics

Kingsgate is a second-generation, family-owned logistics company, founded in 1986. It provides logistics support and transportation freight services for companies throughout North America. Having more than doubled in size over the past three years, Kingsgate has seen the supply chain industry change dramatically over three decades. Ready to take the next step with UC, Kingsgate’s newest location at 1819 will provide the opportunity for UC students to directly engage with company employees through co-op and internships, classes and programs, and allow the company to access the talent it needs by co-locating less than a mile from campus.

"We are one of the fastest growing companies at the epicenter of delivery and commerce. And UC’s 1819 Innovation Hub is focused on growing tech talent at the region’s center of innovation. It aligns perfectly with our mission." ~ Kingsgate owning partner Jeff Beckham

Click here to learn more about Kingsgate Logistics.


This innovative collaboration is driven by Restock Kroger and provides the Kroger Technology team another creative space to partner and develop solutions to redefine the grocery customer experience. Within this Knowledge Action Center, Kroger’s R&D engineer and software developers work alongside UC faculty. The partnership also features a dynamic student co-op and internship program.

“The 1819 Innovation Hub is a co-working community where we will build and discover the next generation of technology and talent. Our vision is to create a talent pipeline that supports our business and positions the region as a place for digital and technology students and professionals.” – Retired Kroger Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer Chris Hjelm

Click here to learn more about Kroger Technology.

Lightship Capital

Lightship Capital is a nationally recognized startup accelerator that serves underrepresented, tech-driven startups through mentorship, specialized curriculum, partnerships and capital investments, providing them the resources and guidance they need to scale. Hillman is under the venture fund, Lighship Capiital. Lightship engages Executives-in-Residence with experience at corporations including Yum! Brands, Procter & Gamble, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, and more. Their EIRs are thoughtfully matched to our portfolio companies based on industry, experience, and their ability to create meaningful wins for our founders. 

“We’ve seen some of the fantastic companies and intellectual properties that are coming from the campus, and really feel like the 1819 Innovation Hub is the new home for tech disruption in Cincinnati.” - Candice Matthews Brackeen, founder of Lightship Capital.

Click here to learn more about Lightship Capital.

Live Well Collaborative

The Live Well Collaborative (LWC) is a non-profit (501 c-6) co-founded in 2007 by UC and Procter & Gamble (P&G). Its purpose is to specialize in user research for the  development of products and services for living well across the life span, with an expertise in the 50+ marketplace. It is a unique academic-industry driven innovation center where interdisciplinary teams of UC faculty and students use a design thinking approach to translate consumer research into products and services.  LWC has worked with over 15 corporate and institutional partners. Current work is being done with Boeing, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, UC Health, and P&G. The most recent work with Cincinnati Children's Hospital has produced solutions that have been implemented and are undergoing validation studies. The work with P&G and Boeing has been translated into several patents.

Click here to learn more about The Live Well Collaborative.


Microsoft enables digital transformation for the era of an intelligent cloud and an intelligent edge. Its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more. Together, Microsoft and the 1819 Innovation Hub plan to develop programs for skilling students, engaging faculty to solve core research and innovation initiatives, and enhance skilling programs for enterprise customers within the Cincinnati Innovation District.

“We want to make Cincinnati a talent hub. We’re really excited about the opportunity that we have together to do that. These are two organizations that are very like-minded in terms of helping folks and their commercial entities be successful.” - Chris Carper, director of Microsoft's customer success team in Cincinnati

Click here to learn more about Microsoft.


The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 established NIOSH as a research agency focused on the study of worker safety and health, and empowering employers and workers to create safe and healthy workplaces. NIOSH is part of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It has the mandate to assure “every man and woman in the Nation safe and healthful working conditions and to preserve our human resources.” 

Click here to learn more about NIOSH.

Procter & Gamble

Backed by more than $13 million in investment by P&G, the Center’s collaborative teams of P&G employees and UC faculty and students give P&G access to talent and solutions while providing opportunities for students to work on more than 200 real-world industrial projects to date. The P&G-UC Simulation Center is credited with expediting solutions to critical commercial problems at a fraction of the cost of more traditional approaches and providing a larger recruiting pool for P&G.

Click here to learn more about the UC Simulation Center -P&G.

Simpson Center for Urban Futures

The Simpson Center for Urban Futures, within UC’s College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning, supports the integration of visionary and interdisciplinary urban studies into curricula and provides scholarships and fellowships. 

Click here to learn more about The Simpson Center for Urban Futures.

Village Life Outreach Project

Village Life Outreach Project is a non-profit organization founded in 2004 and based in Cincinnati. Village Life works in partnership with three remote villages in the east African nation of Tanzania to design and implement projects to fight poverty and improve lives. Funded by UC Health, UC, and private contributions, the organization partners with students and faculty from across the University of Cincinnati to create sustainable change in the areas of healthcare, water quality and access, and educational opportunities in Tanzania.

Click here to learn more about the Village Life Outreach Project.