Innovation Index: Updates from Venture School, the Iowa Startup Accelerator, and 1 Million Cups

Innovation Index: Updates from Venture School, the Iowa Startup Accelerator, and 1 Million Cups

Welcome to the Innovation Index. This is our weekly(ish) spot to round up links and news items from around the web relating to startups, innovation and entrepreneurship in Iowa’s Creative Corridor and beyond, so you never miss a thing. You can help! Email me news and notes.  News and notes: Congrats to the 11 teams that completed Venture School‘s student accelerator yesterday! Final pitches and demonstrations happened at hotelVetro, with question and answer from a panel of judges and several prizes awarded. Laugh out loud moment from video game blog Bosscaster (pictured): “We got out of the building, we went to do our customer discovery. The first thing we learned is, our customers are not outside.” Prizes: $500 for business continuity to Flourish and Post Grad Nation $500 for best customer discovery to Baby Brusher $1,000 for best pitch to Bosscaster $1,000 for best pivot to inVisible $1,000 for best opportunity to SwineGuard $1,000 for most improved to Podmi Hydroponics More from Venture School: Read about the new program just for university faculty, that is being developed with a grant from the National Science Foundation. Applications are open. (Iowa Now) (Hopefully) exciting announcement from 1 Million Cups, the weekly event for education and inspiration (that I help organize): On August 5, we’re testing out a new location! We’re going to FilmScene, in hopes that a setting in the heart of the Iowa City ped mall can make the event that much more engaging. Please attend (RSVP and info on meetup) and help us spread the word. Nate Matherson, co-founder of Iowa Startup Accelerator portfolio company LendEDU, wrote a great blog post on ‘how to launch…
Innovation Index: toddlers using tech, company updates, and more startup community news for July 12

Innovation Index: toddlers using tech, company updates, and more startup community news for July 12

Welcome to the Innovation Index. This is our weekly(ish) spot to round up links and news items from around the web relating to startups, innovation and entrepreneurship in Iowa’s Creative Corridor and beyond, so you never miss a thing. You can help! Email me news and notes.  News and notes: Not sure which says more about our modern times: that toddlers are prolific users of tablets and smartphones, or that research on how said toddlers use tablets and smartphones was completed “through an analysis of relevant YouTube videos.” Either way, the University of Iowa is on it. (IowaNow, full research paper) You can now charge your Tesla in the Corridor. You know, assuming you have a Tesla. (CBS2, The Gazette) Some very nice press coverage: Telepharm, which now operates 122 pharmacies in nine states, in The Gazette, Fanstreamm, almost a year out of Lincoln’s NMotion Accelerator, in Silicon Prairie News, and Built By Local, the new media-for-equity venture (ok, it’s more complicated than that), in Capital New York, and anchors of local Main Street Iowa districts in The Gazette. Kudos to Venture School, the University of Iowa’s customer discovery and business model canvas bootcamp, on a $300,000 federal grant to expand its impact. Since launching in 2013, Venture School has worked with 81 startups and fledgling businesses in Iowa. (The Daily Iowan) Check out several updates on Western Wise, a UI student startup that provides one-on-one virtual English language tutoring to Chinese youth. The team has participated in several competitions and was named Student Startup of the Year by the college of Engineering. (eVenturing, College of Engineering) Blake Rupe, founder of Sift, will take her passion for environmentalism and social entrepreneurship to...
Innovation Index: Telepharm, HowFactory, DateBrew, and the impact of 1 Million Cups

Innovation Index: Telepharm, HowFactory, DateBrew, and the impact of 1 Million Cups

Welcome to the Innovation Index. This is our spot to round up links and news items from around the web relating to startups, innovation and entrepreneurship in Iowa’s Creative Corridor and beyond, so you never miss a thing. You can help! Email me news and notes.  News and notes: TelePharm, the health tech startup established in Iowa City in 2012 by Roby Miller, has expanded its reach by acquiring Custom Data Inc, DBA Telepharmacy concepts. With the acquisition, TelePharm now operates 119 virtual pharmacies in 9 states. Details of the acquisition were not disclosed. Congrats! (TelePharm, Des Moines Register More on Iowa Startup Accelerator graduate HowFactory’s trip to TechCrunch Disrupt conference this week: Watch their Startup Battlefield pitch above, find coverage via TechCrunch here, and the company’s latest demo video here. ICYMI: We’re checking in with all of the Iowa Startup Accelerator’s class of 2014. So far we’ve taken an overall look and visited with HowFactory, ClikHome, Kids Calendar and VenueFox, check back next week for updates on LendEDU, Sift and ProduceRun. SwarmBuild was the first graduate to inform the Iowa Startup Accelerator of plans to shut down. Date Brew, the idea we first met at Startup Weekend Cedar Rapids 2015, has launched its minimum viable product with a few weeks left to go in the University of Iowa’s Venture School. Head on over to datebrew.co to choose a date and location to have date ideas sent to you on demand. Last week David Tominsky and I had the honor of representing Iowa City and Cedar Rapids at the national 1 Million Cups organizer Summit and we learned some interesting stats. Click over to Kauffman’s blog for the ‘Anatomy of the 1 Million Cups entrepreneur,‘...
1 Million Cups: Kids Calendar and Kyoger

1 Million Cups: Kids Calendar and Kyoger

The 10 Iowa Startup Accelerator teams are taking over 1 Million Cups Iowa City / Cedar Rapids. Two teams will pitch each week, before taking questions from the audience. This is a chance to meet the teams who came from all over the world to build a business in Iowa. More about Kids Calendar More about...
1 Million Cups: Punctil and ShopTutors

1 Million Cups: Punctil and ShopTutors

The 10 Iowa Startup Accelerator teams are taking over 1 Million Cups Iowa City / Cedar Rapids. Two teams will pitch each week, before taking questions from the audience. This is a chance to meet the teams who came from all over the world to build a business in Iowa. More about Punctil More about ShopTutors (although, this startup has completely pivoted and is now going by...