UC Davis Signs Contract and Hosts Big Bang! Competition
big bang
BlueTechValley Innovation Cluster would like to welcome UC Davis Family Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship as one of our newest partners! The main goal of this partnership is to develop an annual Business Plan Competition for energy and water innovators to guide early-stage companies/teams through the fundamentals of business planning in order to deliver results for gaining visibility and maximizing impact with investors. This exciting partnership is a big step in the right direction in assisting new Central Valley businesses to be successful. 
UC Davis is hosting a huge event – the Big Bang! Business Competition. This event provides a forum for UC Davis and the broader community to collaborate, develop and test business visions and plans. The Big Bang! offers mentorship, team building, education, financing, and networking for aspiring entrepreneurs. The event launches on October 24th with multiple events beginning in October and continuing through May 2018! 
In addition to the actual competition, the Big Bang! offers a comprehensive series of workshops for building entrepreneurial skills. The competition is generously sponsored by local corporations and the investment community. Skills are learned by participating including developing an elevator pitch, evaluating the potential market, developing a business model, writing a business summary and many more. For more information or to register, click here: 

Company Highlight:  AjO
AjO is a company involved with BlueTechValley Innovation Center that has been making great strides in the past year! Their mission is to reduce carbon emissions, which includes increasing market uptake of home energy upgrades. They are working hard to reduce the amount of energy that is wasted in the residential sector while improving the health, comfort, quality and experience of living in our homes. AjO has a “whole-human” approach that is designed to connect with humans’ natural rational and emotional realms. They work with contractors and real estate professionals to equip them with the tools necessary to elevate their effectiveness in communicating the benefits of energy upgrades. 
AjO also uses peer influence, which is a powerful form of persuasion. By offering a search engine where homeowners, or future homeowners can view other houses with similar criteria to theirs, they can see just how plausible and effective energy upgrades can be. Through the online application that AjO offers, you can filter through homes similar in location, age, architectural type, towns, neighborhoods, even homes owned by people with a similar profile to yours. With this online database, it becomes easier to view and understand examples of energy upgraded homes, making it easier for someone to understand what would happen if they also were to upgrade their home. 
AjO takes the psychological understanding of human decision making, and applies it to creating a better future. Since half of the wasted energy is from homes that we live in, AjO has made it their mission to help people with understanding the decision making process that goes into energy upgrades. AjO affirms home performance, contractor’s good work, and the value of a hard-earned asset through their data. 

Team Member Highlight: Kate Norum 
Kate Norum is a project manager for ICWT. She was born and raised in Hawai’i and even though she has been living on the mainland for quite a while now, the islands will always be home. Kate started working for the Center for Irrigation Technology about 25 years ago involved in technical activities such as testing and reporting. She also works with the team on compliance, proposal, and report writing. Kate first was introduced to this field by her father, who is an agricultural engineer who started CIT in 1980. When she began her professional career, she had a different idea of what she would be working on, but working in the irrigation realm was built into her DNA! She has found a way to make a living doing something she loves and is truly passionate about, which makes going to work every day exciting. 
The most challenging aspect of her job is to the right words to communicate effectively through technical writing. Kate follows the words of President W.H. Taft, “Don’t write so you can be understood; write so that you can’t be misunderstood.” Through working in this field Kate has developed an incredible respect for inventors. She finds their passion and undaunted optimism to be inspirational. They view failure as an opportunity to learn something new and move forward. Kate’s final piece of advice would be to find your passion and never stop learning. She believes that we all spend lots of our time working, but there inevitably will be times in life when your belief in what you are doing may be the only thing that keeps you moving forward. 

kate update 2 


New WET Center Member!
Shemin Garden is a new WET Center member. The company, which began in 2016, is primarily focused on distributing natural products for use in agriculture! They are striving to achieve three goals: 1) to explore a natural way to bring energy to plants, humans, and the earth; 2) to produce safe and healthy food by reducing pesticide use, increasing stress resistance of crops, and conserving the agricultural ecosystem; and 3) to enhance happiness and peace throughout the community. They were encouraged to join the WET Center by Jeff Macon, who is the project manager of the program. Through their membership at the WET Center they are hoping to learn from other agriculturalists as well as entrepreneurs in the Fresno State community and to grow their new ag-focused company while also contributing to the local sustainable farming community. 
 Upcoming Events: 
Online Marketing Webinar: September 28, 1:00 PM 
covering the fundamentals and methods of Social Media Marketing, Search Engine Marketing (SEM), Retargeting, and Search Engine Optimization(SEO). Click here to register and for more information! 
Industry and Company Research Webinar: September 29, 12:00 PM Libraries have some excellent databases to help you find detailed, up-to-date information and statistical data on industries and companies. Learn how to take advantage of these valuable tools. Cick here for more information and to register!
​Consumer Research Webinar: October 13, 11:00 AM Knowing your market is critical to the success of any business. The Library's business team will show you how to identify and analyze your customers. Click here for more information and to register! 
SBIR/STTR Events: September 28- Fresno/Madera & September 29- Bakersfield: to apply click or to receive more information click here!
Cal State Monterey: October 16- Greater Vision is an annual event addressing contemporary issues in agriculture and society. Greater Vision is a collaborative project of CSU Monterey Bay and the Grower-Shipper Association Foundation. To apply or for more information click here!

Central Valley Innovation & Entrepreneurship Forum: November 15, 2017:
 For the first time ever, the Central Valley Venture Forum and Central Valley Stock Exchange are coming together to create the Central Valley Innovation & Entrepreneurship Forum, the largest event for innovation and entrepreneurship in the Central Valley.
Pitching Opportunity at CVIE Forum:
This November, your venture can pitch in front of a room full of investors, venture capitalists, industry leaders, entrepreneurs and more! 
Twenty promising local entrepreneurs and startup ventures will vie for attendees’ Bulldog Investment Dollars to win the Audience Award while five ventures will present to a panel of investors to compete for the Investor Award. Click the apply now button to complete the form.

Did you know?
Did you know? September is national preparedness month! Did you know most businesses never reopen after disaster strikes? Learn more on how to be prepared! Click the picture below for more information!
In the news: 
Renewable Energy Use                  SBC Seeking Entrepreneurs         Advertising to Farmers
usstandstosa logo-sbc  native-advertising-to-marketing-to-farmers-65_795x

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Oct 13, 2017 11:00 AM

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