AltaSea, Morton La Kretz Grant Agreement to Create La Kretz Blue Economy Incubator

October 10, 2017

For Immediate Release

AltaSea, Morton La Kretz Grant Agreement to Create La Kretz Blue Economy Incubator

LOS ANGELES – Philanthropist and businessman Morton La Kretz and the non-profit AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles have signed a grant agreement to create and fund the La Kretz Blue Economy Incubator.

Morton La Kretz was a major funder of the downtown Los Angeles headquarters of the LA Cleantech Incubator (LACI) which opened last year. Both non-profit incubators are designed to nurture promising business startups with office space, consulting support, business connections, and financial assistance. The La Kretz Blue Economy Incubator will focus on technology companies creating sustainable business models connected with the ocean.

“The Blue Economy Incubator is a crucial part of our broader vision to turn aging wharfs in the Port of Los Angeles into a vibrant, cutting-edge center for ocean-based science research, STEM education and sustainable business creation,” said AltaSea Executive Director Jenny Krusoe. “Morton La Kretz’s support is a vital endorsement of that vision. He knows how important it is to invest in our future, creating the research and education structure that can help make our Los Angeles and indeed our entire planet healthier and more sustainable.”

“Creating a healthier, sustainable planet is the key focus of my philanthropic work,” La Kretz said. “My first projects have been primarily about the land. With the La Kretz Blue Economy Incubator at AltaSea, I can extend that reach to the oceans. The newest addition to AltaSea will attract the world-class leaders and promising companies that can leverage the opportunities our ocean presents for research, exploration and innovation.”

Companies based at the La Kretz Blue Economy Incubator will be able to take advantage of AltaSea’s 4,100 linear feet of pier access to deep water as well as interactions with other incubator companies, AltaSea tenants and partner organizations. Those organizations include the Southern California Marine Institute, which represents 23 Southern California oceanographic labs, aquaria and research universities.

AltaSea tenant partners include the Ocean Exploration Trust led by Dr. Bob Ballard; sustainable aquaculture company Catalina Sea Ranch; underwater robot maker Blue Robotics; and others. AltaSea is also a major supporter of The Longest Swim, a planned 5,500-mile swim by record holder Ben Lecomte across the Pacific Ocean to highlight plastics pollution while gathering research data.

About Morton La Kretz

Morton La Kretz is a Los Angeles-based real estate developer and philanthropist. His philanthropic work focuses on the environment and conservation, including UCLA’s LA Kretz Hall, which houses the Institute of the Environment & Sustainability; the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator in downtown Los Angeles; the UCLA La Kretz Center for California Conservation Science in the Santa Monica Mountains; the La Kretz Hall of Sciences at California State University, Los Angeles; and the La Kretz Watershed Garden at TreePeople headquarters, providing a visual environment in which children can learn about water conservation.

About AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles

AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles accelerates scientific collaboration, facilitates job creation and inspires the next generation for a more sustainable ocean. Built on a historic pier with access to the deep ocean, AltaSea’s 35-acre campus brings people together to expand science-based understanding of the ocean; incubate and sustain ocean-related business; and pioneer new ocean-related education programs. For more information, please visit www.AltaSea.org.

For Media Inquiries

Krista Swingle, Deputy Director, AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles

(424) 210-4321

kswingle@altasea.org

 

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