Sunday, November 09, 2008

ESTECH - The Next Step (Want to Get Involved?)

You've perhaps been hearing about ESTECH - the new Eagle-Star Technology Corridor project - but it has a great delight thus far. They are definitely doing the right things the right way and.. for the right reasons.

The goal is to build a more entrepreneurial area with a special emphasis on nurturing the existing industry (most prominently Ugobe, but there's more there than you may realize.)

They are forming 4 committees to stat putting wheels under this - if you are in SW Idaho & would like to hop on board, here's a great "ground floor" opportunity! Contact me if any questions! And definitely contact Teri Bath or me if you are intrigued by one of these committees. (I'm biased toward my own committee, LOL, but the other 3 are doing good work already - and all need more good minds.)

ESTECH Committees

Hi, everyone - in the spirit of getting some wheels under ESTECH, at the last meeting Teri & Lloyd announced 4 official standing committees & their chairs. If you have interest in one of these, please contact me directly as we are gearing up for meetings next week. (Alternately, contact Teri Bath, teri.bath@eaglechamber.com)

Marketing (includes mapping, working with local governmt & chambers)
POC: Ms. Mary May, chairperson

Business Development ( business retention & expansion as well as attraction)
POC: Mayor Phil Bandy & Mayor Nate Mitchell

Real Estate & Infrastructure
POc: Mr. Lloyd Mahaffey, co-chair (RE)
POC: Mr. Bob Bruce, co-chair (Infra)


Entrepreneurship & Venture Finance (see below for more)
POC: Norris Krueger, chairperson - norris.krueger@gmail.com
(Mr. Curt Rideout, co-chair)

All the committees want to meet, both virtually & physically, next week. Teri B asked the chairs to map out a draft of the various possibilities, especially any 'quick wins' we can identify! However, there is plenty of room for additional ideas and energy. (Energy is especially welcome!)

This effort will do some serous good for Idaho, not just Eagle/Star and... This is going to be fun!

ENTREPRENEURSHIP & VENTURE FINANCE COMMITTEE

May I plug the EVF committee? LOL

The 'big picture' task is obviously to:
(a) identify ways to nurture entrepreneurs & entrepreneurial businesses and
(b) identify ways to build the entrepreneurial ecosystem

Build a pipeline of businesses (deal flow across the life cycle) and to keep growing the area's entrepreneurial culture!

Key pieces identified so far (though still very negotiable):

1) Evangelizing - also working hard with key stakeholders in the entrepreneurial ecosystem, including legislative leadership ( !)

2) Events - we're committed to starting a monthly "Science Cafe" to showcase Idaho' cool science/tech and a monthly "Pub Talk" (open mike) night for entrepreneurs. Thanks to Ugobe, there's a major 2009 conference on Synthetic Life Forms.

3) Training/Education - to grow a more entrepreneurial Eagle/Star implies training needs, from HS entrepreneurship and/or programming classes to general entrepreneurial training to very specialized training to support new Eagle-Star businesses, there are some surprising resources we can get geared up.

4) Venture Finance - a critical piece of growing the whole pipeline is access to capital. Lloyd is convinced that we can raise some serious funding, but deal flow is obviously critical (hence the training, ppen mike, etc.)

These are all interconnected.

The really good news? Most of of the "low hanging fruit" will cost little/nothing (or we can use OPM!)

Other things WILL surface - mostly from YOUR ideas. These items are just the start - and how they get implemented is up to the committee. (Which will be true for all 4 of the committees!)

If you're ready to roll up your sleeves, contact me via norris.krueger@gmail.com.Next up, a wiki so we can communicate better - and be thinking about when you can meet physically. I'll also send you copies of the memos developed so far.

Entrepreneurially yours,
Norris

p.s. did I mention how much fun and... how much good we can do?

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