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K-State Today

July 20, 2015

K-State, Manhattan businesses partnership brings technology firm to Manhattan

Submitted by Communications and Marketing

Through a combination of university and business efforts, technology company AvaTekh Inc. will soon be moving to Manhattan.

AvaTekh develops technologies used in wireless communications, global positioning systems, sensors, power management and signal and image processing. The company serves the aerospace and defense industries, among others.

The relocation is a result of ongoing collaboration between Kansas State University’s Electronics Design Laboratory and Ultra Electronics ICE Inc., a local division of the global Ultra Electronics Holdings. The Kansas State University Institute for Commercialization, or KSU-IC, served as the catalyst for the deal working in conjunction with Manhattan’s Knowledge Based Economic Development partnership, or KBED.

“As a community, Manhattan has embraced us and has proactively fostered our initiatives as a company, creating viable and valuable partnerships on our behalf with both Kansas State University and local industry players,” said Carrie Nikitin, CEO of AvaTekh. “The KBED partners have created an opportunity for AvaTekh to do business as a company at a much higher value and in a much stronger position through these partnerships.”

“This relocation is a prime example of how targeted economic growth can work when the community comes together,” said Lyle Butler, president of the Manhattan Area Chamber of Commerce. “We are pleased that the Manhattan community and Kansas State University are able to provide the talent and research capabilities to meet AvaTekh's needs in a way that will allow them to stay in Kansas and prosper. This particular project was the result of a tremendous multiyear effort by Rebecca Robinson of the KSU-IC.”

AvaTekh will co-locate at the Ultra-ICE facilities to develop and manufacture products for the commercial marketplace and military use. AvaTekh is currently working with K-State researchers to find ways to make smartphones run faster and improve battery life. Ultra-ICE was founded in Manhattan and designs, manufactures and tests aerospace products.

AvaTekh also will work with Manhattan-based Radiation Detection Technologies Inc., which manufactures radiation detectors and detector readout-electronic technologies for use in health care, defense and energy.

“This relocation highlights the economic growth impact Kansas State University can have when it collaborates with the business community to connect the university’s global capabilities with talent-rich, idea-rich emerging companies,” said Kent Glasscock, president of KSU-IC.