The two-day event will provide opportunities for inventors and creators to hear from and interact with venture capitalists, angel investors and business leaders from around the United States. The goal of the conference is to create and maintain a tech ecosystem in the Midwest.
“All of the opportunity is here,” Ben Milne, Dwolla founder and CEO said in the announcement. “We have the resources, we have the ingenuity, we are starting to have the infrastructure. As companies are beginning to divest in places like Silicon Valley, there is no reason why the Midwest can’t fill that gap. And if there is a reason, it’s that Midwesterners don’t realize it’s possible. That’s what Monetery is for.”
Steph Atkin, VP of Marketing at Dwolla, says expanding Monetery, which held its first conference in 2018, will allow for more coverage of topics facing the Midwest tech ecosystem.
“The topics we’ll be covering have everything to do with ways the Midwest can lead the nation in the most pressing issues in the tech world,” Atkin said. “We will have sessions about Seed fundraising, IPO, diversity and inclusion—all the things that create a competitive ecosystem. And we’re adding speakers and sessions as we get closer to May 21.”
The event will be held in downtown Des Moines at the Temple for Performing Arts.
In 2018, Monetery raised more than $10,000 for Pi515, an organization that teaches computer coding to Iowa’s underserved population, particularly refugee 7th-12th graders in central Iowa.
Monetery 2019 will continue to be a funding engine for programs that provide financial support dedicated to underrepresented groups in technology.
The 2018 conference was limited to 200 people and Atkin says that this year’s registration will be similarly exclusive.
“To start a conversation, you need to be able to hear each other,” says Atkin. “Monetery is very much for serious believers in the Midwest who want to collaborate with others on how we can bring the region closer to its full potential. Intimacy and real dialogue are essential.”
Registration for Monetery 2019 will open in early 2019 with speakers and agenda items being added continuously until the conference opens in May.
Monetery: Growing the Midwest startup ecosystem –March 20, 2018