Middle Bit: Jason Gross joins ManchesterStory as Vice President

ManchesterStory Group, a venture capital firm based in Des Moines, announced this week that Jason Gross is joining the company as Vice President and Head of Platform. 

“Jason is an award-winning innovation, strategy and technology-adoption leader with experience leading large-scale transformation at three top insurance providers,” said Dave Miles, Founding Partner of ManchesterStory. “Jason’s expertise and insights will enhance ManchesterStory’s capabilities as we help our strategic partners leverage innovative solutions and accelerate the growth of our portfolio companies.”

The creation of this new role coincides with the expansion of the firm’s venture capital franchise as it engages more strategic partners and adds to its network of insurtech, fintech and healthtech companies. 

“I am thrilled to join the team at ManchesterStory during this incredible period of change in insurance,” said Gross. “I have had the privilege to work with dozens of carriers and InsurTechs on innovation, adoption and investments over the years and joining this impressive team was a natural fit.” 

Greater Des Moines Partnership announces fifth annual Small Business Success Summit

The Greater Des Moines Partnership’s fifth annual Small Business Success Summit has been scheduled to take place on Friday, Nov. 5 from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. at the FFA Center on the DMACC Ankeny campus.

Summit participants will have a chance to hear presentations by keynote speakers, participate in workshops with fellow business owners in Greater Des Moines, and engage in conversations at various breakout sessions.

“Our small businesses are still overcoming the challenges they faced during the year of the pandemic, and many are still figuring out how they can appropriately reevaluate their business process with the ever-changing landscape,” said Christina Moffatt, Director of Small Business Development at the Greater Des Moines Partnership. “The Small Business Success Summit will be an opportunity to empower our small businesses and help direct them toward their future goals.”

Costs for the Summit range from $79 for Partnership Investors and Members to $99 for nonmembers. Registration information and the full speaker lineup will be announced at a later date. Stay up-to-date on the latest details and register for the Summit on The Partnership’s website.

Applications open for Cultivo

Applications for the second cohort of the Cultivo Global Ag Innovation Program are due August 30, 2021. The six-week virtual program will launch in the fall with startups from around the world taking a deep dive into the U.S. startup ecosystem and making connections with the business, research, and farmer leaders of Iowa.

Application forms can be completed online.