Milwaukee Institute, Startup Wisconsin partner on regional entrepreneurship conference

5 Lakes Forum to be held in May

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Startup Wisconsin and Milwaukee Institute are partnering to host a new regional entrepreneurship and technology conference in Milwaukee called 5 Lakes Forum.

Kathleen Gallagher (Photo: Rick Wood)

The one-day event will be held on Tuesday, May 14 at Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co., and aims to attract hundreds of attendees from the Great Lakes states.

This is not the only Midwestern entrepreneurship conference. The Great Lakes International Innovation Summit was held in Milwaukee in October, and was targeted to entrepreneurial service providers, such as incubators and accelerators. In April, the 8th Annual Midwest Entrepreneurship Conference will be held in Omaha.

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But the hope is this new Milwaukee event can gather startups and investors together in a unique way.

“What we’re really trying to do is bring together the best entrepreneurs and the best technology people from around the region,” said Kathleen Gallagher, executive director of Milwaukee Institute, a nonprofit technology industry advocacy organization. “We really hope to help people make more connections and forge more collaboration.”

Matt Cordio at a Startup Wisconsin event.

Morning general sessions will highlight technology and entrepreneurship issues for a wider audience, and afternoon tracks will delve deeper into topics of interest to startups, technology and venture investing. The Venture Track will include a startup pitch portion.

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Among the speakers lined up for 5 Lakes Forum are: Matt Howard, co-founder and chief executive officer of Madison-based food delivery service EatStreet; Max Lynch, co-founder and CEO of Madison-based app development platform Ionic; Troy Vosseller, co-founder of Milwaukee- and Madison-based startup accelerator gener8tor; Matt Gorniak, co-founder and chief revenue officer of Chicago-based business solutions review platform G2 Crowd; and Kyle Nakatsuji, founder and CEO of Chicago-based car insurance startup Clearcover.

“To build a strong, competitive ecosystem we need all of the top players in our region working together,” said Matt Cordio, founder of Startup Wisconsin. “Our vision is to make 5 Lakes Forum a convening force for advancing technology in the Great Lakes region.”

The cost for the conference ranges from $55 for college students to $300 for service providers. More information is available here.

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