Startup Milwaukee Week schedule released

Statewide early-stage entity established

Matt Cordio of Milwaukee Startup Week, of which Reverse Pitch was a part.

Startup Milwaukee Week has announced the schedule for its third annual weeklong event focused on early-stage companies, which will be held from Nov. 5 to 11.

Matt Cordio introduces the inaugural Reverse Pitch MKE event at Milwaukee Startup Week 2017.

Previously known as Milwaukee Startup Week, the program will include more than 50 events throughout the week spotlighting emerging companies and the infrastructure in place to support them. It aims to forge partnerships among companies and share best practices in entrepreneurship.

Among the planned events are:

  • “Reverse Pitch MKE,” a competition to solve a Northwestern Mutual business challenge and gain a seed investment of up to $85,000.
  • “Tapping the Federal $2.5 billion Technology Innovation Seed Fund,” a primer on the SBIR/STTR programs for research and development.
  • “Startup Milwaukee Showcase,” an expo for startups to demonstrate their products and services in a casual atmosphere.
  • “88nine x Capitol Records Hackathon,” a venue for developers, designers and musicians to brainstorm new ideas for music delivery, distribution and discovery.

The full calendar is available here:

The organizers have also established an entity called Startup Wisconsin to guide the statewide development of the tech and startup ecosystems. The wider Startup Wisconsin Week will include events in Appleton, Beloit, Eau Claire, Fond du Lac, Green Bay, Kenosha, La Crosse, Madison, Racine, Sheboygan and Stevens Point.

The Startup Milwaukee Week and Startup Wisconsin Week monikers were introduced to provide consistency in branding statewide, said Matt Cordio, founder and president of Startup Wisconsin, Startup Milwaukee and Skills Pipeline Group LLC. Both Startup Milwaukee and Startup Wisconsin are divisions of Skills Pipeline, a Milwaukee-based technology talent recruitment firm.

“Wisconsin was built on know-how and an entrepreneurial spirit, we have seen firsthand how successful our state can be when we invest and develop our technology ecosystem,” Cordio said. “Now, we are at a pivot point and to compete for talent and capital, we must come together to connect and create a statewide movement and build a more robust ecosystem.Doing so will allow companies to thrive in Wisconsin.”

Last year, Milwaukee Startup Week attracted more than 4,100 attendees, up 57 percent from its inaugural year in 2016. More than 200 events were held statewide last year, and about the same number are planned this year, Cordio said.

“We’re still filling up the calendar in every city,” he said.

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Molly Dill, former BizTimes Milwaukee managing editor.

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