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Dear readers, February 2020

In just a few short years, the Wisconsin Tech Summit has built a reputation as a place where opportunities are born. Investments, research partnerships, sales-channel relationships and more have stemmed from the conference, which matches qualified emerging companies with major companies looking for innovation outside their own corporate walls.

The March 16, 2020, #WisTechSummit conference at Green Bay’s Lambeau Field will feature nearly 20 major firms that are primed to meet with emerging companies in the form of 15-minute “speed dates.” Information on the major companies can be found on our web site. Don’t miss your chance to meet with them; our one-page application (under the “Emerging Companies & Funds” tab on is all you need to get started.
Applications due Friday, February 14th at 5 p.m.


Tom Still, president


Major firms ready for ‘speed dates’ with emerging companies at March 16 Tech Summit
Emerging companies may apply through
Feb. 14 to meet with major firms and explore potential business relationships around technology needs and innovation as part of the seventh annual Wisconsin Tech Summit. The Tech Summit will feature a series of brief meetings, or “speed dates,” to foster communication and partnership. It is produced by the Wisconsin Technology Council and the Wisconsin Healthcare Business Forum.

Participating major firms thus far are: AT&T, Aurora Research Institute, CGI, Dedicated Computing, Exact Sciences, GE Healthcare, J.P. Morgan, Kimberly-Clark, Marshfield Clinic Health System, Northwestern Mutual, Oshkosh Corp., Promega, Rockwell Automation, Schneider, Schreiber Foods, Titletown Tech, WEA Trust, and WIPFLi. Read more!

Leap for Lambeau! Reception, tours set for March 15 before Tech Summit in Green Bay
Beginning 3 p.m. Sunday, March 15, conference attendees are invited to tour the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame. That will be followed by tours of TitletownTech, an innovation center for young, tech-based companies just a short walk from Lambeau Field. A networking reception will be located at the Leaps and Bounds Café, hosted by Lodge Kohler. A detailed schedule and hotel room block information at Lodge Kohler is located at Both tours and the reception are included in the Tech Summit registration fees. Visit the conference website for agenda, hotel room block information and application details!


Here is a quick glimpse at 2020 BPC first-round entries
The 2020 version of the Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest is under way and it has already provided a fascinating glimpse at Wisconsin’s entrepreneurial profile. The geographic spread showed that entrepreneurs come from just about anywhere in Wisconsin. For the first time in the contest’s 17-year history, more entries came from outside Dane County than inside.That’s not a rap against the Dane County tech economy, but a sign of increased activity elsewhere. The rise of women in business was also reflected in the numbers, with more than a third of all entries (about 70) coming from female entrepreneurs. Read more!

Health care partnership in Chippewa Valley topic for Feb. 18 Tech Council Innovation luncheon
Learn how biomedical innovation and a major partnership in the Chippewa Valley will help to transform health care featuring anelists Nick Amundsen, vice president of product strategy for Jamf; Dr. Timothy Nelson, director of research and innovation at Mayo Clinic Health System in northwest Wisconsin; and Chancellor Jim Schmidt of UW-Eau Claire.
Jamf, the global software firm rooted in Eau Claire, will be a part of the partnership, as well, through projects such as creating a home monitoring application on mobile devices for congenital heart disease. Read more + register.

SHINE-ing on! Medical isotope firm progress topic of Feb. 25 Tech Council luncheon
Greg Piefer, founder and chief executive officer of SHINE Medical Technologies, will discuss SHINE’s journey from a campus laboratory to a potential world leader in the production of medical isotopes. SHINE is on track to produce a more reliable supply of Molybdenum-99 (Mo-99), the most commonly used isotope in nuclear medicine. Mo-99 is the parent isotope of technetium-99m (99mTc), a light-emitting element used tens of thousands a time daily for heart stress tests, cancer staging and other medical purposes.
Read more + register.

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       Brinkman, Buckley 043019
Buckley Brinkman

Guest column: Toward an American Renaissance: How not to miss the opportunity

The U.S. should be creating one of the great Renaissances the world has ever seen. Our economy recovered from the Great Recession more quickly than any other developed nation; our ability to innovate outstrips anything on Earth; our manufacturing base is strong; and we understand and agree on the issues affecting all of us.

It’s an era when we should be making unprecedented progress on critical issues and creating a brighter future for the country. We are not, however, because distractions and outdated thinking prevent us from realigning, cooperating and engaging around our most pressing economic challenges.

Read the full column by Tech Council Innovation Network member Buckley Brinkman, executive director at WCMP

 Bartholow, Tim 051118 
Tim Bartholow
WEA Trust

Guest column: Medical costs are frustrating families; here’s how startups can help

Society has said for 40 years that health care costs are not sustainable: It may now be true.  With families now experiencing annual deductibles of $2,000, $5,000 or even $10,000, families are strained to afford these deductible levels, let alone increases in coming years.

Why is WEA Trust investing in startups and strategies to enhance quality, which at the same time improve affordability?  Simply put, it’s our job to help families and their employers, and quality and affordability need to improve faster.

Read the full column by Tech Council Innovation Network member Tim Bartholow, chief medical officer at WEA Trust


Week of February 10
Milwaukee Business Journal: Exact Sciences beats income, revenue projections in 4Q earnings report
WisconsinINNO: Why this Milwaukee founder keeps his fast-growing housing startup in Wisconsin
WI State Farmer: Wisconsin company semi-finalist in 2020 Farm Bureau Ag Innovation Challenge
WisBusiness: ‘Meeting in Middle America’ to bring Midwest conversations to a national audience

Week of February 3
Release: MIT Wisconsin summer job program seeking interested Wisconsin companies
CapTimes: WEDC head backs current agency structure, calls for finding ‘innovative ways’ to help farmers
Milwaukee Business Journal: Brainchild Studios finds its market with millennial moms
Release: OnLume receives FDA 510(k) clearance for fluorescence-guided surgery device
Urban Milwaukee: New app promotes black entrepreneurs
CNBC: Epic and about 60 hospital chains come out against rules that would make it easier to share medical info
Brava Magazine: Ayla Annac of InvivoSciences wants to grow your heart
Wisconsin State Journal: Alumni announce up to $70 million matching gift for UW-Madison faculty support
Release: WiSys launches ‘VentureHome’ startup initiative aimed at local entrepreneurship
Madison Startups: Ideadvance deadline April 17
WisBusiness: Study highlights state’s shrinking rural population
Royal Purple (UW-Whitewater): Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest opens opportunities
Urban Milwaukee Op Ed: Economic development that works
WisBusiness: NovoMoto has raised nearly $300,000 through a crowdsourced Wefunder campaign.
WisBusiness: Dairy expert predicts U.S. milk prices will climb in 2020

Week of January 27
WisBusiness: New cancer treatment method could prove less costly, study shows
WisconsinINNO: Ionic sees record revenue in 2019 as companies flock to its app software
BizTimes Milwaukee: Entrepreneurs unveiled for fourth season of Project Pitch It
Madison Magazine: Best of Madison Business 2020: Difference makes a difference featuring Greg Piefer UW-Madison joins national leaders to discuss plan to promote high-tech growth
Milwaukee Business Journal: Rockwell Automation to restart manufacturing at Milwaukee plant within weeks
WPR: Republican bills would allow Wisconsin residents to block tech companies from collecting personal data
CapTimes: New fund will honor Doyenne Group’s Amy Gannon, daughter who died in Hawaii helicopter crash
WisBusiness: Panelists call for greater investments in creative industries
Madison Startups: Murfie’s assets acquired by Crossies
WisconsinINNO: 5 predictions for Wisconsin’s tech ecosystem in 2020
WisBusiness: Using cognitive behavior therapy to break racial bias habits
WisconsinINNO: New Milwaukee startup aims to help women relaunch tech careers Opioid crisis leads Plumb Pharmaceuticals founders to create better addiction treatment
Wisconsin State Journal: Alliant Energy study uses artificial intelligence to hunt down phantom power, target waste

Week of January 20
WisBusiness: the Podcast with Sheila Long, founder of MalamaDoe
Milwaukee Business Journal: Former leader at IBM, Accenture named CEO of MKE Tech Hub Coalition
Madison Startups: Redox, Roundtrip partner
BizTimes Milwaukee: NEWaukee to redevelop Schlitz Tivoli Palm Garden building
UW-Madison: Partnership fosters entrepreneurship that has social impact
BizTimes Milwaukee: Economic Trends: 20 Milwaukee startups to watch in 2020
Wisconsin State Journal: SWIB says ‘core fund’ grew 19.9%, ‘variable fund’ 28.6% in 2019
BizTimes Milwaukee: Economic Trends: Consumers carry the economy

Week of January 13
WisBusiness: the Podcast with Jennifer Gottwald, director of licensing for WARF
Madison Startups: HealthMyne Brings in New CEO
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Mentor Greater Milwaukee kicks off 2020 with a call to action
CapTimes: Madison startup Vehroot wants to make your smartphone part of your car
Wisconsin State Journal: Breast surgery device by company with UW founders now in use
Milwaukee Business Journal: Johnson Controls launches AI-enabled facial matching software





WARF 2016 

Tom Still 2017
Tom Still
Tech Council


02/06/20  InsideWis: In a smaller world, global economy can seem scary – but it’s also reality
01/30/20  InsideWis: What ‘Rust Belt?’ Latest think-tank report debunks tired image
01/23/20  InsideWis: Wisconsin at center of looming federal battle over health records
01/16/20  InsideWis: Federal rules on data privacy make more sense than state-by-state laws

View full archives by clicking here.


01/27/20  WisBiz: The Show features Darcy Luoma, a consultant and performance coach, who offers some thoughtful advice for other entrepreneurs like herself.

In a separate commentary, Tech Council President Tom Still talks about “data privacy” and the need for a federal approach to protect personal information versus a state-by-state approach.

View full archives by clicking here.

     Darcy Luoma

 2020 conferences 728x90

BizTimes Milwaukee: Sprecher Brewing Company sold to local investors
WisBusiness: the Podcast with Ross Leinweber for Bold Coast Capital
Reuters: U.S. banks could invest in venture capital funds again under ‘Volcker rewrite’
WisconsinINNO: VC Firm raises $52 million to invest in Midwest startups
Release: College savings app U-Nest announces investment from Northwestern Mutual Future Ventures
Release: TitleTownTech leads $8 million round of funding for Oculogica
BizTimes Milwaukee: Northwestern Mutual invests in California-based fintech mobile app VEDA Data Solutions closed a $5 million Series A with HeathX Ventures
BizTimes Milwaukee: Milwaukee-based venture capital fund raises $6 million
WisconsinINNO: US VC funding hit $136 billion in 2019, Great Lakes startup funding on the rise
BizTimes Milwaukee: Milwaukee-based PROMISS Diagnostics raises $400,000

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Tech Council Innovation
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Need help finding the membership level right for you?
Please contact Angela Schlobohm, development & member
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Your $750 Investor Networks membership entitles you to one free pass to our two major conferences (Entrepreneurs' Conference and Early Stage Symposium), as well as regular Tech Council Innovation Network events.


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