Oklahoma Entrepreneurial Summit designed to inspire, inform budding job creators
By Scott Meacham
Copyright © 2016, The Oklahoma Publishing Company
In this column, I tend to write about the science or technology behind the innovation. I also like to highlight the new companies — the jobs they create, the markets they serve, the revenue they draw into Oklahoma from other parts of the country and the world. Behind it all are Oklahoma’s entrepreneurs.
Entrepreneurs are the drivers of this phenomenon we have branded Innovation to Enterprise. They prove concepts. They convince investors to invest. They convert the doubtful. They persuade first customers to take a risk on their new ideas. They encourage founding teams to stay the course on the darkest days.
And entrepreneurs inspire. They show the rest of us what is possible and what is NOT impossible.
Their inspiration is what the 2016 Oklahoma Entrepreneurial Summit (Oct. 7) is all about.
The Summit is appropriate for all types of entrepreneurs and all stages of business. Entrepreneurs, investors, economic leaders and students will fill the room to enjoy an agenda that features Oklahoma entrepreneurs from three of our most promising startups.
Linear Health Sciences is a company co-founded by a physician who had an idea for improving treatments that use medical tubing, such as IV lines. WeGoLook (the company’s COO panelist if a former Governor’s Cup winner) is a sharing economy platform that is at the leading edge of the sharing economy, and Hire360, a hiring platform that provides companies access to top candidates and improves the hiring process from beginning to end.
A second panel discussion will provide education to go along with the inspiration, explaining the sources of funding here in Oklahoma, from the VC funds managed by i2E, to angel funds, to banks.
In the afternoon, we kick off Who Wants To Be (WWTB), which is open to college-level entrepreneurs, students and faculty members. The session includes the must-haves for a business plan, the how-to for developing financial documents, and the “do-this” for creating an energizing and compelling investor pitch. Our promise is that attendees will get some tips from us that they won’t learn on Shark Tank.
The transition point in the day is a networking luncheon where Summit panelists and other Oklahoma leaders in the various aspects of entrepreneurship host individual tables.
Attendees get the list ahead of time and join the table they are most interested in.
If history is a predictor, when the luncheon concludes, we will have a tough time getting folks to push back their chairs. They will still be talking when we clear the room.
Oklahoma’s “already entrepreneurs,” as well as our “wannabes” are eager to learn. And there’s a wealth of know-how here in the sooner state. It comes together October 7 at The Summit and WWTB, sponsored by Oklahoma EPSCOR, Greater Oklahoma City Chamber, and i2E.
Scott Meacham is president and CEO of i2E Inc., a nonprofit corporation that mentors many of the state’s technology-based startup companies. i2E receives state support from the Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology and is an integral part of Oklahoma’s Innovation Model. Contact Meacham at [email protected].