In February 2011, UVC had the pleasure to host our friend and mentor Brad Feld on a two-day whirlwind tour of Upstate NY. During that trip, Brad spoke to nearly a thousand members of Upstate’s entrepreneurial ecosystem and explained how Boulder had made the transition from a picturesque small town to one of the nation’s hottest tech hubs. The Boulder Thesis (or as we like to say, the Feld Formula) became public in 2012 with the publication of his book Startup Communities.
Fast forward to a few months later and lunch at the famed Moosewood Restaurant with Ithaca based entrepreneurs Elisa Miller-Out and Chirag Desai. After the usual grousing about silos, inadequate communication, and so on, Elisa and Chirag decided that instead of waiting for someone else, they would just start something and see if others wanted to join in. Fast forward again to Summer 2013 when over 150 entrepreneurs and supporters jammed into a tent for BBQ and networking (picture). We asked Elisa to describe the Ithaca Venture Community is all about in her own words below:
Ithaca Venture Community is a grassroots volunteer group with a mission of bringing together student and professional entrepreneurs in Ithaca and providing networking and growth opportunities. The group is focused primarily on offering peer to peer support for the challenges and opportunities that high growth entrepreneurs face. Our goal is to create a more active and vibrant startup ecosystem in Ithaca, while connecting to the rest of the CNY entrepreneurial community.
Our primary event currently is the Ithaca Tech Meetup, which happens quarterly at the Carriage House Hayloft. There are usually 5 startups giving presentations and about 75-100 attendees on average. Our events are supported by sponsors and are free and open to the community. Regular sponsors of IVC include: IVR Technology, Singlebrook, Cayuga Venture Fund, TCAD/FLEF, Cornell Real Estate, Miller Mayer, UVANY, Databound Solutions and more. Other partners include: POPShop, GirlsInTech, Cornell TEC, GiveGab and more.
We also curate some digital startup community tools for the Ithaca area such as NextPlex and Startup Genome. To learn more about upcoming IVC events, join our community.
To hear firsthand how silos are joining in Ithaca, listen to the podcast of Elisa being interviewed by WHCU Radio.