Iowa Innovation Corporation
Funding from the Venture Challenge program will launch the Iowa Go-To-Market (G2M) program. This program is a partnership between the Iowa Innovation Corporation, the Iowa State University Startup Factory, and VentureNet Iowa. G2M seeks to address two gaps in the Iowa innovation ecosystem. First, a shortage of “follow-on” support programs for entrepreneurs who have completed one of the growing number of accelerator programs in the state (or are at an equivalent stage following completion of a successful SBIR/STTR project or other program that includes an entrepreneurship development component) but who need additional support to increase their likelihood of commercial success. Second, a lack of resources that facilitate connection of entrepreneurs/startups with the many services they need as they develop. This project will capitalize on the success of existing accelerator programs and Iowa’s growing innovation ecosystem (which includes public and private members) through a two-pronged approach: (1.) launching the G2M Accelerator, which will provide support for commercial product development and fundraising needs through advanced training in sales, marketing, corporate development, and finance; and (2) developing and deploying two means through which entrepreneurs’ connections with support services and providers across Iowa can be improved -- an online resource guide focusing on the needs of high-tech startups, and access to pro bono services as part of the G2M Accelerator.