Cincinnati is one of the fastest-growing startup cities in the country, and Cintrifuse is on a mission to create the #1 startup hub in the Midwest. Through initiatives like StartupCincy, it’s building connections and a community of startups and entrepreneurs to fuel a new economy. Cintrifuse is providing a robust ecosystem where innovators turn ideas into reality.
Off the momentum of StartupCincy Week in the fall of 2019, Cintrifuse launched more consistent, weekly programming under the brand Cintrifuse Startup Series, giving member startups access to valuable information on a more regular basis. The series is broadly divided into three categories: accelerator/Investors, technology professionals, and universities/civic. But the topics can be as diverse as managing work/life balance.
Originally held onsite with speakers at Union Hall, it transitioned to virtual presentations, going completely online with the outbreak of COVID-19. Each event is now free and open to the public. The number of presentations has quadrupled since last year.
“We’ve all had to get a little creative given present circumstances, but that’s what entrepreneurs do, right? Startup life can get lonely and when you take away the traditional forms of convening? So we moved our Startup Series online and been really impressed with the uptick in attendance, engagement and even expanding the reach beyond just the usual suspects. Big wins,” said Eric Weissman, VP of External Relations.
Depending on the speaker, the presentations are generally scheduled four to six weeks in advance. Content is largely driven by attendee surveys and comments, plus solicitations from national speakers. The series will remain virtual until the state of Ohio gradually reopens for business.
“If something positive can be spun from COVID-19, it is that enrollment for the Startup Series has actually increased since it went virtual,” according to Kathryn Prigge, Cintrifuse’s marketing and communications manager. A large part of this is due to its convenience, the effectiveness of the hosting platform, the ability of attendees to network in real-time, and now their cost to attendees: free.
And the Startup Series attracts C-suite speakers and mentors. One example is the upcoming CEO Roundtable, scheduled for May 21st. It includes leaders from three of Cincinnati’s most promising startups—Losant, VNDLY, and 80 Acre Farms.
It is intended to be a spirited discussion on navigating the COVID-19 crisis in a rapidly changing business environment.
Now more than ever, startups are strapped for resources. Providing free access to a focused Slack community and to the Startup Series, Cintrifuse and StartupCincy are providing needed resources to keep Cincinnati’s innovation and startup scene alive and thriving.