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Middle Bit: Dr. Charlie Miller to give keynote at Iowa Technology Summit
The Technology Association of Iowa (TAI) announced on Wednesday that Dr. Charlie Miller will deliver the keynote presentation at the Iowa Technology Summit on Tuesday, October 2. Miller currently serves as the Principal Autonomous Vehicle Security Architect at Cruise Automation. In addition, he is a former National Security Agency hacker, a 4-time winner of Pwn2Own and the first…
TechBrew: Matt Behrens of the Office of the Chief Information Officer
On the second Friday of each month, the Technology Association of Iowa hosts an informal networking event at West End Salvage in downtown Des Moines for entrepreneurs, educators, technologists, business leaders and government professionals. During each event, Brian Waller, President of the Technology Association of Iowa, does a sit down Q&A with a local tech executive. This month, Waller spoke…
TECNA Conference coming to Des Moines
Des Moines has been selected to host the TECNA 2018 Summer Conference next week from July 24 - July 26. The TECNA Summer Conference is a two-day event focused on sharing best practices and strategies that help grow your tech council and increase your value to members, sponsors and key stakeholders in your community. The annual conference…
TAI holds first Innovation Roundtable on artificial intelligence
TAI held their first quarterly Innovation Roundtable on Tuesday. It was an interactive panel and group discussion looking at the challenges that come with preparing for the future of AI and its impacts on businesses. The prospects of AI are being highly publicized, and there is a large disconnect between the aspirational picture of the AI-powered world…
TechBrew: Bryce Hemme, Director of Platform Engineering at Granular
On the second Friday of each month, the Technology Association of Iowa hosts an informal networking event at West End Salvage in downtown Des Moines for entrepreneurs, educators, technologists, business leaders and government professionals. During each event, Brian Waller, President of the Technology Association of Iowa, does a sitdown Q&A with a local tech executive. This month, Waller…
Q&A: Get to know Ben Milne
The Technology Association of Iowa hosts a "TechBrew AM" networking event each month in communities across Iowa. This month in Des Moines, Brian Waller—President of the Technology Association of Iowa—interviewed Ben Milne the founder of payments company Dwolla and cofounder of Clay & Milk. The Technology Association of Iowa is celebrating its 20th anniversary and Waller said to celebrate,…
Technology Association of Iowa Archives | Page 2 of 2 | Clay & Milk
A central Iowa ag-tech accelerator has secured more backers and finally has a name. The Greater Des Moines Partnership first announced the accelerator last year, naming four initial investors. On Monday, the Partnership said the program will be called the "Iowa AgriTech Accelerator" and named three new investors. The new investors include Grinnell Mutual, Kent Corp. and Sukup Manufacturing, all Iowa companies. They join investors Deere & Co., Peoples Co., Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Co. and DuPont Pioneer. Each investor has agreed to put up $100,000 for the first year of the accelerator. Startups entering the program will receive $40,000 in seed funding in exchange for 6 percent equity. Tej Dhawan, an angel investor and local startup mentor, is serving as interim director until the AgriTech Accelerator names a permanent leader. Dhawan held a similar role with the GIA before Brian Hemesath was named as managing director. As interim director, Dhawan said his main job includes hiring the accelerator's executive director, establishing a business structure and initial recruiting for the first cohort. The accelerator will place few filters, such as location and product, on the applicant pool, Dhawan said. "When you’re seeking innovation, innovation can come from every corner of the world so why restrict ourselves," he said. One area the the AgriTech Accelerator won't recruit from is biotech. For its first cohort, the AgriTech Accelerator will work out of the GIA's space in Des Moines' East Village, Dhawan said. A future, permanent home is still to be decided. The accelerator's program will host startups from mid-July through mid-October, ending with an event connected to the annual World Food Prize. The GIA, which the AgriTech Accelerator is based on, also ends with presentations at an industry event. The accelerator has also started lining up a mentor pool. The Iowa Corn Growers Association, Iowa Soybean Association and the Iowa Pork Producers Association have agreed to provide mentors, as has Iowa State University. While the AgriTech Accelerator is loosely based off of the GIA, it will differ in its business structure, Dhawan said. The GIA runs through a for-profit model for both operations and its investment fund. The AgriTech Accelerator will have a nonprofit model for its operations and a for-profit setup for its fund. Dhawan said the nonprofit model is being used so the accelerator can better work with other nonprofit partners, such as trade associations. "These are all organizations that are nonprofits and can be amazing stakeholders without ever having to be investors in the accelerator," he said. "It becomes easier to work with trade associations in their nonprofit role when we are also a nonprofit." When it's up and running, the AgriTech Accelerator would be one of a handful of ag-focused startup development programs in Iowa. Others include the Ag Startup Engine out of Iowa State University and the Rural Ventures Alliance from Iowa MicroLoan. Matthew Patane is the managing editor and co-founder of Clay & Milk. Send him an email at mpatane@clayandmilk.com.
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