Here are the key headlines for the week of Feb. 14-Feb. 21, 2020.
Miracle in Oklahoma City
Developers tried and failed for years to revive Oklahoma’s East Side. Then an unlikely team stepped up.
A Bad-Ass Woman Gets The Credit She Deserves
Stories from the heartland of America, and Times of E’s first listening tour
How Startup Istanbul Got 190,000 Applications
With the U.S. government putting up barriers between the U.S. and emerging markets, an influential accelerator program has become a conduit to the West.
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More Founders Ditch San Francisco and New York
It’s hard to build a startup when you’ve got crushing rent to pay. That’s why more founders are moving to smaller cities like Austin and New Orleans, according to new research by Startup Genome. But there’s a tradeoff: they have to be more creative in getting in front of investors, who aren’t as plentiful in smaller cities.
Citi Pushes Its Social Agenda Through a New Avenue: Venture Investing
The banking giant launches the $150 million Citi Impact Fund to make “double bottom line” investments in private sector companies that help society in four areas: workforce development, financial capability, physical and social infrastructure and sustainability. The bank is calling it “the largest fund of its kind to be launched by a bank using its own capital.”
Startup Enlists Data Scientists to Solve Africa’s Challenges
Singularity University popularized the idea of using global competitions to solve pressing world problems. Now Zindi, an early-stage venture in Cape Town, is allowing NGOs, governments and companies to host online competitions to solve data-oriented challenges in Africa, like one recent one to reduce traffic fatalities. The first step: registering 10,000 data scientists on its AI- and machine learning-based platform.
Will Atlanta Be The Home of the “LeBron James of Tech”?
Four times more black people work in the tech sector in Atlanta than in San Francisco, research shows, and the city is home to a growing contingent of black computer programmers, information security analysts and database administrators. More are leveraging those skills to launch startups and tapping into resources like tech incubators and corporations like Coca Cola and Delta Airlines, which have a track record of supporting black entrepreneurs.
Two Chicago Nonprofits Join Forces To Bring One-Stop Support to Tech Firms
The Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center–which provides training and advice to 450 startups through the tech hub 1871 at the Merchandise Mart—is acquiring the Illinois Tech Association, which advises later-stage startups. The idea is to provide help to startups at all stages of growth. As 1871 CEO Betsy Ziegler puts it, “This completes the stack.”
Scaleup Malaysia Recruits High-Profile Managing Partner
Xelia Tong made a name for herself as vice president, investment, and head of tax incentives for Cradle Fund in Malaysia, facilitating the funding of 185 entrepreneurs. So, when she left after a five-year-run, it didn’t take long for growth accelerator Scaleup Malaysia to tap her to become a managing partner. She’ll head investor relations, with a focus on helping companies find strategic investors and partnerships.
Upcoming Events/Registration deadlines
Harvard Social Enterprise Conference
Location: Boston and Cambridge, Mass.
March 7-8, 2020
Information is available here.
Presented by students at Harvard Business School and Harvard Kennedy School, this two-day conference includes a pitch competition for entrepreneurs with life-transforming ideas or social enterprises that want to scale.
Lauder Institute TrendLab Africa Symposium
Information is available here.
This inaugural event is focused on bringing together profit and purpose, with an emphasis on entrepreneurship, innovative financing and economic and social development.
MIT Africa Innovate Conference
Location: Cambridge, Mass.
April 11, 2020
Information is available here. Early-bird prices end March 11. The 10thannual conference, hosted by the MIT Sloan Business Club, focuses on boosting Africa’s digital economy.
Techstars Alabama EnergyTech Accelerator
Location: Birmingham, Ala.
Application deadline: April 5, 2020
This 13-week program in Birmingham, Alabama, provides mentoring to startups creating innovative electrical and utility solutions.
— Compiled by Elaine Pofeldt
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This story and others on New Builders Dispatch are made possible by a sponsorship from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation is a private, nonpartisan foundation that provides access to opportunities that help people achieve financial stability, upward mobility, and economic prosperity – regardless of race, gender, or geography. The Kansas City, Mo.-based foundation uses its grantmaking, research, programs, and initiatives to support the start and growth of new businesses, a more prepared workforce, and stronger communities. For more information, visit www.kauffman.org and connect with www.twitter.com/kauffmanfdn and www.facebook.com/kauffmanfdn.