NAB Joins D.C.-Based Business Incubator

WASHINGTON—The National Association of Broadcasters announced that its technology division, NAB Labs, has entered into a corporate partnership with 1776, a Washington, D.C.-based startup hub providing resources and networking connections for startups within regulated industries.

Founded in 2013, 1776 offers startup companies with high growth potential the means to build and expand their operations. Among its services, 1776 provides working space for startup members, full-time entrepreneurial educational programs, and access to an investor network and the 1776 Seed Fund. Other partners include Comcast, Microsoft, AT&T, CEA, Wilkinson Barker Knauer and Georgetown University.

NAB Labs is joining 1776 as part of its continuing commitment to innovation and the incubation of new ideas. Broadcasters have a history of being adopters of new technologies that solve real problems and offer improved community engagement. NAB Labs has made a variety of strategic investments in technologies and companies like NextRadio, a provider of smart phone apps and hybrid-radio services; Syncbak, an over-the-top (OTT) media technology company; and most recently, Antenna, an online and mobile engagement platform that that captures and measures audience sentiment.

The 1776 membership complements other NAB and NAB Labs initiatives like Futures Park, a showcase for media related research and development projects from around the world; NAB Futures, an exclusive event that focuses on the emerging trends and technologies that impact the media industry; and Sprockit, a place for media and entertainment entrepreneurs to come together around products, services and revenue models. Working with 1776, NAB Labs will continue to help foster a pipeline of innovation for its members and the industry.

With its partnership with 1776, NAB Labs will engage with early-stage startup companies pursuing innovations in areas important to local communities and media companies. NAB will conduct office hours at the 1776 Campus as well as host other events, network with startups of strategic relevance around the world, and actively participate in a roundtable event to discuss the innovation landscape of the broadcasting industry.

“Since its launch, 1776 has helped foster companies on the leading edge of innovation in government-dominated markets,” said NAB Chief Technology Officer Sam Matheny. “NAB’s partnership allows us the chance to closely collaborate with these startups that are advancing technology in fields of interest to our members, such as cybersecurity and unmanned aerial vehicles. We also hope working with 1776 yields opportunities for cross-collaboration with our other programs, investments and members.”

“Startups today are keenly sensitive to the evolution of the broadcasting industry, and they are eager to know how they can prepare themselves,” said 1776 Managing Director David Zipper.”“By partnering with NAB, 1776 will be able to provide our members with a unique lens to recognize broadcasting technology needs and opportunities that would otherwise go unrecognized.”