There’s a new tech meetup in Ann Arbor, organized by engineers. Web app developer Mohammed Abouzahr of ITHAKA, Soar Technology software engineer Dana Foley, and front-end web developer Jacquelyn Aimee Olson have organized a new meetup in Ann Arbor for people getting into tech when they don’t have a background in the industry, or even a degree. It’s called Bloom In Tech, and the first one is 6 pm tonight Thursday December 5th in northeast Ann Arbor.
Did you ever wonder how candidates land jobs at hot tech companies like Duo out of Ann Arbor and StockX in Detroit? It’s a high-growth space, but operates mostly through back channels–or at least it seems that way in a landscape that is still frequently underrepresented in media coverage of business and local news. Ryan Landau is founder of re:purpose, a tech-focused startup recruiting firm that works with fast-moving companies. Startups and tech firms including Duo, StockX, WeWork, Bloomscape, Atomic Object, Detroit Venture Partners and the like come to Landau to source talent in an environment that still has trouble holding talent from leaving for the coasts.
Today we caught up with the new Phimation Strategy Group and Ann Arbor SPARK sponsored Rising Leaders program, which piloted this year to mentor business leaders in the Ann Arbor area. At the Circ Bar in Ann Arbor, we heard speeches from several tech, talent, and business leaders to hear their best career advice and leadership lessons.
It was a packed house at Zingerman’s Roadhouse this week for a panel on the best options for financing your company. It’s always worth it to get up for a 7 am breakfast here, because you are guaranteed to meet amazing new friends in the Ann Arbor business world, and because if you stay the full 2 hours your clothes will smell like the Zingerman’s barbecue smoker all day. The panel at this Leaders Connect breakfast hosted by executive coach, psychologist, and University of Michigan professor Dr. Rob Pasick included President of the Technology Industry Group at Bank of Ann Arbor Michael Cole, Managing Partner and Co-Owner of BBC Entrepreneurial Training & Consulting Kris Bergman, VC Evan Ufer of Plymouth Growth Partners, serial entrepreneur Mike Klein who is currently CEO of genomics startup Genomenon, and Skip Simms who is Senior VP of Ann Arbor SPARK and managing partner of the Michigan Angel Fund.
On the day we met him, local IT security tech consultant Tim Marsh was on the phone dealing with a data breach for Equifax. He’s a consultant with 20 years of experience working in Fortune10 IT including working for Ford, Hewlett Packard, and GE most recently. But that’s not all he does. In addition to his work as founder of consultancy ApprenTek, Tim Marsh recruits young local talent out of Michigan colleges like Eastern Michigan, the University of Michigan, Concordia, Western, and Michigan Tech for Fortune500 tech support jobs. “I recruit for Fortune500 companies for short-term engagements,” he tells us, “and also local recruiting for young people getting into tech support.”
Every Time The Bell Rings, a Startup Gets Its Wings: Venture Accelerator’s Diane Bouis Talks Connecting New Ann Arbor Startups
In a maze of buildings on the University of Michigan’s North Campus in Ann Arbor, the Venture Accelerator, startup hub for intellectual property spun off by the Office of Tech Transfer from research and faculty at the University of Michigan, sits quietly on the block that used to be owned by Pfizer. Diane Bouis, Innovation Program Manager at the Venture Accelerator, helps these new ventures find resources and space in the many labs and offices housed in the building where the Venture Accelerator hosts new companies. The Venture Center, Accelerator, and Office of Tech Transfer work in close conjunction here to support baby startups in life sciences in particular to get out into the world.
Doug Neal has seen a lot change in the Ann Arbor and Midwest tech scene in the last few years. He is a managing director at eLab, a VC fund based in both Ann Arbor and Palo Alto in Silicon Valley that focuses on early stage AI and machine learning companies, the Internet of Things,…
Young entrepreneurs are pouring out of tech towns these days. If the towns are lucky, they retain many of them now that the Midwest and other places outside Silicon Valley are reviving and affordable spaces to grow a business. The University of Michigan, ranked #1-rated ecosystem for undergrad student entrepreneurs by Princeton Review, is leading the way in this shift in startup culture across the U.S.. That’s why successful serial entrepreneurs like Jim Price were brought on board, to mentor the next generation of founders. Price is Entrepreneurial Studies Faculty & Entrepreneur in Residence at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business, and he’s a big connector and mentor for young entrepreneurs starting out in Ann Arbor, with a background that spans coasts, tech and engineering, and teaching. He’s also a really fun guy we’ve watched help shift the entrepreneurial environment in Ann Arbor through generous mentorship, so we caught up with him in his office at the University of Michigan to ask him what led him to Ann Arbor and what trends he’s seeing these days in business and entrepreneurship.
Nice to see so many familiar tech faces this morning as Dr. Rob Pasick’s monthly Leaders Connect networking breakfast hosted Google at Zingerman’s Roadhouse in Ann Arbor. The theme? Culture and innovation at the tech giant, which recently announced plans to expand its Ann Arbor office on Traverwood as well as its Detroit Little Caesar’s Arena campus to a third floor. Kicking off this event, Dr. Rob offered the group what he offers his students at the University of Michigan, an exercise in mindfulness. “Every day we journal,” he said, “and I encourage you to set the intention. What would make today a good day?…. And part two of this exercise is to reflect. If you think about your day yesterday, what do you appreciate? I call those my abundances. What lesson did you learn?”
It’s not uncommon for people with a degree in music to end up in tech, not just for the jobs but because people with musical training often have a creative way of thinking that translates beautifully to coding or engineering. That was the case with Mobile Mondays meetup organizer Rob Baxtresser, who is VP of…