NewBoCo: Launch day for the Iowa Startup Accelerator is here

Launch Day for the Iowa Startup Accelerator is going to be a little different this year.

Traditionally, Launch Day serves as the capstone or final event of the Iowa Startup Accelerator. But this year it will include a focus on Iowa’s startup ecosystem.

David Tominsky—Iowa Startup Accelerator Managing Director—said the focus will be on education, entrepreneurship and innovation in Iowa.

“Really talking about those three areas and the impact the community has seen in those areas,” Tominsky says.

The five teams that will take the stage on Thursday night are:

Doors open at the Paramount Theatre in downtown Cedar Rapids for Launch Day at 5 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 7. The program starts at 6. Anywhere from 800-900 people are expected to attend.

The Iowa Startup Accelerator is part of the Cedar Rapids-based nonprofit NewBoCo.

Forecasting the future

Tominsky said the teams will present first, then speakers on entrepreneurship, education and innovation will follow. Eric Engelmann—Executive Director of NewBoCo—will be the final speaker of the evening and forecast the future of NewBoCo.

“The thing that will be different this year is a longer-term plan,” Tominsky said. “Eric will talk about setting up the next big step we are going to take—and that we think the state needs to take—to promote those three initiatives.”

Tominsky uses NewBoCo as an example of how the Iowa startup ecosystem has grown.

“I started in 2014 and it was just Eric and I…Today there are 18 people on staff,” Tominsky says. “I think it’s great to celebrate the accelerator but now that we are a few years into this work and are starting to see the efforts paying dividends, we really want to call attention to why that all matters.

“We want to call attention to the pieces that matter and how they work together.”