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Cedar Rapids and Iowa City

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Research: Talent Attraction Case Study (Nebraska)

By SPN Team / November 8, 2019

Last summer, the Aksarben Foundation approached Chapman and Company about creating a landscape analysis on talent for Nebraska.  While this analysis is about Nebraska, there are many lessons for communities throughout the Silicon Prairie region. Here are some broad stroke lessons from the report: The United States is WAY behind on technology talent.  This is…

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Research: State Funding Report for the Silicon Prairie

By Tom Chapman / September 16, 2019

2018 was a terrific year for the Silicon Prairie regarding venture dollars deployed.  More than $6.1B was deployed in the region.  While the number of companies receiving funds was about 8% lower (approximately 1450 companies were venture backed in the region), the amount of funding was up more than 34.5% from 2017 to 2018.  Thus,…

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iotaMotion Completes $2.52 Million Round

By SPN Team / September 3, 2019

Last week, Iowa City based iotaMotion CEO and co-founder, Chris Kaufmann, MD, announced that the company had completed its usability testing and raised $2.52 million in funding to help the company continue building products and managing the regulatory hurdles associated with commercialization. “We’re pleased to have completed this second round of friends-and-family financing with participation…

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Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) Provides Funds

By Tom Chapman / July 26, 2019

The Iowa Economic Development Authority (“IEDA”) announced that five companies had received demonstration funds from IEDA last week The five companies funded by the IEDA are:  Home Painter received a proof of concept loan of $25,000,  Lender Close received a Propel Loan of $250,000 from the Iowa Acceleration Fund,  MakuSafe received a…

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EntreFEST in Cedar Rapids this week, Venture School Launch Day tonight

By Laura Neesen / May 16, 2019

Tominsky, David (@tominsky). “These are my people, my tribe. On an adventure together at #entrefest #EntreFEST2019.”  10:25 AM – May 16, 2019. Tweet Tominsky, David (@tominsky).  “Love that @geoffwood does this crash course on the Iowa Startup Scene and excited to have it as one of the first sessions at #EntreFEST2019.” 9:09 AM – May…

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More than 600 attend Heartland Shark Tank casting call

By Rod Armstrong / April 15, 2019

The first step in getting on Shark Tank, the reality TV startup pitch competition, is a casting call. On April 6, 150 teams got their chance to pitch to one of five casting producers in Lincoln. The event was organized by the Engler Entrepreneurship Program at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. “This is the time of…

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We are having the wrong conversation about workforce development

By Ola Ayeni / April 12, 2019

It’s no secret: The Silicon Prairie has a workforce problem. It isn’t just us, either. Employers across America can’t find enough qualified workers. With a historically low unemployment rate, qualified, talented workers aren’t just sitting in front of a screen browsing ZipRectuiter and CareerBuilder. This talent shortage hasn’t gone unnoticed by workforce developers. That said,…

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8QS With a Silicon Prairie Founder: Tamara Brunow

By SPN Team / April 5, 2019

Tamara Brunow is CEO of Brunow Contracting and H2W Apparel. Tamara Brunow is the CEO of Brunow Contracting, an SBA 8(a) Certified, Economically Disadvantaged Woman-Owned, HUBZone Concern based in Council Bluffs, Iowa. Tamara has overcome gender barriers and other challenges in a male-dominated industry to become one of the few women in the country to…

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Rantizo Wins AgTech Innovation Competition in Des Moines

By SPN Team / February 12, 2019

Iowa City agritech startup Rantizo won the $20,000 Grand Prize, sponsored by Farm Credit Services of America, at last month’s AgTech Innovation Competition in Des Moines. Rantizo is an Iowa based agricultural tech startup creating a targeted drone spraying platform that utilizes electrostatic technology to safely and precisely deliver cartridge dispensed agrichemicals when and where…

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