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IO2020: the New Innovators’ Summit connects entrepreneurial community (and tickets are free this year)

By SPN Newsroom / October 15, 2020

Great ideas start with curiosity. Bringing those ideas to life is its own challenge.  That’s what longtime entrepreneur Brian Ardinger believes, and that’s why he’s made it his mission to help Nebraska startup founders, business leaders and innovators solve those challenges.  Ardinger is cofounder of InsideOutside.io, an innovation-focused resource network for startups, entrepreneurs, investors, enterprises,…

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Developing Leadership When Things Are Not Good

By Tom McCauley / April 23, 2020

Originally posted on the AIM Institute blog No one knows how the coronavirus pandemic will evolve, how long the economy will stay underwater, or even what recovery looks like.  But the radical workplace upheaval and sudden ad hoc shift to remote technology over the past month suggest two truths:  We need more tech talent.   We…

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Hybrid85 passes profits onto farmers

By Henry Nunn / March 4, 2020

At the very top of the Nebraska State Capitol building stands a 32-foot tall bronze statue of the Sower, a figure representing agriculture’s vital role in the development of modern civilization. Maybe it wasn’t the best fit for the state license plate, but the Sower is an undeniable symbol of Nebraska. According to the Nebraska…

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Weekly Funding Report

By Tom Chapman / December 17, 2019

The Silicon Prairie had an excellent week as deals appear to be closing before the holiday rush.  St. Louis and Minneapolis had strong weeks.  And we had a big round in Oklahoma.  The Zero Card of Tulsa which provides an interesting software solution to healthcare costs received significant outside funding – including participation from the…

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Funding Roundup for the Week of November 18th & 25th

By Tom Chapman / December 9, 2019

This week we are writing a funding roundup that really covers one and ½ weeks to cover Thanksgiving week plus the week previous.  During this time period, Chicago received a disproportionate amount of the funding dollars in the region.  However, Omaha and Oklahoma City both had companies close out fund raising campaigns. Also, the region…

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Funding Roundup for the Week of Oct. 28

By SPN Team / November 11, 2019

Two Silicon Prairie companies will be moving to Buffalo in the upcoming weeks, thanks to a program created by 43North.  The program announced seven winning companies last week – including Strayos (St. Louis) and Peanut Butter (Chicago).  As part of the program, both companies must move their CEO and a majority of staff to Buffalo.…

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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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Funding Roundup for the Week of Oct. 21

By SPN Team / November 4, 2019

It was a strong week for Minnesota.  Between Total Expert and ShiraTronics, Minnesota based companies brought in more than $85 million in Venture Funding.  There was a little more diversity than in previous weeks with companies in Nebraska, Missouri, Illinois, and Wisconsin also raising substantial funds.  These fundings are aggregate lists created from Crunchbase, SEC…

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Funding Update for the week of October 14

By Tom Chapman / October 29, 2019

Chicago had another strong week.  Overall the Silicon Prairie more than one hundred million in fundings this month, including some large rounds in Chicago and in biotechnology. Large Rounds (10m+) Apervita – Chicago – $22.56 million – Apervita is a healthcare technology company that provides health insights using machine learning and artificial intelligence. The company…

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