FPL’s 35 Mules accepting applications to help startups grow in Florida

by | Jul 20, 2021

 

Applications are now open for a grant program powered by Florida Power and Light (FPL) that will help entrepreneurs grow their early-stage startups.

35 Mules, an innovation hub launched by FPL in 2020, helps entrepreneurs develop their game-changing ideas in energy, water and energy-adjacent industries into a business based in Florida, further supporting the state’s economic growth and flourishing the business environment —  which is ranked No. 1 in innovation and higher education, and has the best tax climate in the Southeast.

The program says they are accepting applications for their next class, which will be housed for 12-18 months at FPL’s Juno Beach campus, with August 23 being the final date to apply.

Companies selected will receive a dedicated workspace on FPL’s campus for 12 to 18 months, access to subject matter experts in solar, renewables, innovation and smart grid, and free coaching from executives, along with a grant of at least $100,000 to put toward their venture.

“FPL has long prided itself on embracing innovation to deliver affordable, reliable and clean electricity, both now and over the long term,” said FPL President and CEO Eric Silagy. “FPL’s track record of providing exceptional value to customers is the direct result of our employees’ relentless pursuit of continuous improvement and being unafraid to challenge the status quo in tackling tough problems. It’s what makes our company so special and will drive success of our new incubator program, 35 Mules, as FPL finds a new way to continue moving Florida forward.

In its first year, 35 Mules issued a $100,000 grant to six startups (totaling $600,000), helping businesses in the Sunshine State turn their vision into a reality. Since joining the program, the six startups have gone on to receive over $8 million in funding, which includes the cash grants and additional outside funding.

The program’s unique name comes from FPL’s humble beginnings in 1925, when a very unlikely patchwork of enterprises combined to form the precursor to NextEra Energy, including an ice plant, a sponge boat and 35 mules.

For more information on the program, click here.

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