The Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus is coming to Cleveland October 20-25. That fact struck me as funny because JumpStart's Annual Community Meeting is now only days away and, in some ways, it feels like we are preparing for a three-ring circus. Not meaning that it's going to be crazy, frenetic, and carnival-like, but more that it's an event that needs to be timed precisely, entertaining, and of course, innovative.
Over 600 people are expected for the day's events, and each and every one of them should expect to see something never seen before at any prior JumpStart Annual Community Meeting.
For the first time, JumpStart is hosting an Angel Fair on the same day as our Annual Meeting to bring some of the state's most promising companies together with potential investors. Out of a pool of more than 60 applicants, a select group of 12 entrepreneurs have been chosen to present to a room filled with Angel investors. Two of the presenting participants, CitizenGroove and LifeServe Innovations, were recently named as finalists for BusinessWeek's "America's Best Young Entrepreneurs" recognition. If you're an angel investor and wish to attend the Fair, send a note to Kerri Breen at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you aren't an investor, but still would love the chance to talk with these amazing entrepreneurs, you'll get your chance at the Showcase of Entrepreneurs.
All Angel Fair companies will be sharing their technologies at our Showcase of Entrepreneurs taking place on the main floor of the Wolstein Center starting at 3:30pm. For the first time this year, our Showcase of Entrepreneurs will involve local student entrepreneurs. Of the 70+ companies exhibiting their technologies, nearly 30% are student entrepreneurs from a dozen of our region's colleges and universities.
The culmination of the day, taking place in the arena, is JumpStart's Annual Update. Learn about the entrepreneurial ecosystem at work in Northeast Ohio. Be amazed by the economic impact entrepreneurial investment has on our region. And, listen for an announcement important to anyone interested in starting or growing their own entrepreneurial venture.
Register now, if you haven't already, for the JumpStart Annual Community Meeting on Wednesday, October 26th to take part in the entrepreneurial event of the year! There won't be any high-wire acrobatic acts or trained tigers, but this display of our region's entrepreneurial ecosystem won't disappoint.
John Dearborn is President of JumpStart and brings experience as an entrepreneur, founder and CEO at companies across the US and Europe over the last 25 years to the pursuit of economic transformation in Northeast Ohio.