Venture Creations’ graduate Token to receive $1.75M in state funds
Identity technology startup Token will receive up to $1.75 million through the New York State Innovation Venture Capital Fund. Founded by Rochester Institute of Technology alums, Token is based at Venture Creations, RIT’s technology business incubator.
Through local partners, Token manufactures a biometric, encrypted, wearable device that offers a combination of convenience and security, via its unique two-factor authentication. Its companion software platform allows the Token ring to be integrated into various identity applications, including computer logins, mobile payments, transit cards, and “smart” locks for home and auto. The company has sold out its initial pre-production run. The product will be available later this year.
“We plan to continue to support local manufacturing and business in Rochester, where we are based, because we believe in nurturing the local community, as a community ethos is at the core of our values,” said Melanie Shapiro, co-founder and CEO of Token.
Token is a 2017 graduate of RIT’s Venture Creations.
“I think one of the more beneficial things about RIT’s Venture Creations is the access to RIT,” Melanie Shapiro has said. “Most of our engineers are RIT graduates. In fact, we have full-time employees here that started as co-op students and now are full-time employees of Token.”
Since opening in 2003, RIT’s Venture Creations has graduated 38 companies, of which 12 have been clean-energy companies. Collectively, these companies have created 499 jobs and raised more than $70 million in private capital.
“We’re very proud to have worked with Token and are very excited to see them reach this next milestone,” said Richard Notargiacomo, Venture Creations director. “One of the most rewarding things about working at Venture Creations is knowing that our team has played a part in the creation of companies that are helping to drive the local economy and create jobs. I believe that our success is defined by our companies’ success.”