WELCOME TO THE INAUGURAL IASOURCELINK RESOURCE PARTNER NEWSLETTER!
Last November, I was excited to join the IASourceLink team as program manager and network builder with the Iowa Economic Development Authority. The daughter of a small town entrepreneur, I grew up understanding that owning a business took a lot of determination, juggling long hours, and tons of hard work. Back then, with few resource organizations to help, Dad and fellow business owners relied on an organic system for assistance. Peer mentoring and networking took place at morning coffee in the local cafe; non-traditional financing could be found (if you knew who in town still had money when the week ran out - our early angel investors!); and the local community provided a ready customer base to market to.
Today’s picture is a bit different. Business-to-business mentoring remains valuable, but finding opportunities to mix with peers isn’t always easy. It can be even more difficult to identify financing options, and the home-grown customer base can now just as easily shop globally as they do from the neighborhood store. Fortunately, unlike my dad’s era, Iowa entrepreneurs have many quality resource organizations, like yours, available to help them navigate the business landscape and increase opportunities for success.
As an IASourceLink Resource Partner, you serve a vital role in the overall business assistance network, and we want to help you help the businesses in your community thrive. Beginning today, and quarterly going forward, the IASourceLink team will bring you information relevant to your organizational needs. Each quarter, expect to…
Learn more about your peers through featured Partner blogs
Hear thoughts on Iowa’s business landscape from IEDA Director Debi Durham
Develop a better understanding of state programs that assist small businesses
Receive tips on business licensing and regulatory information
On that last point, we’d really like to hear from you! Consider this your platform to share with your resource partner peers stories about entrepreneurial successes you’ve helped achieve, innovative programming you’ve undertaken, or even information on a topic of interest that could be helpful to other partners.
The expertise your organization can share with aspiring entrepreneurs and small business owners is an invaluable asset. Providing the right information at the right time is a powerful tool that affects change and innovation not only in your community, but with ripples outward across Iowa. Thank you, for the great work you do!
-Amy Kuhlers, Program Manager and Network Builder, IEDA
FROM THE DIRECTOR'S DESK
By Debi Durham via Iowa Economic Development Authority
IASourceLink recently celebrated its third year of being the online home for Iowa startups and entrepreneurs to get connected to local and statewide resources. In 2014, IASourceLink experienced a two-fold increase in web traffic, and successfully completed thousands of requests for business help from Iowans, with questions ranging from how to develop a great concept, to mid- sized firms looking for market research. In almost every case, those requests resulted in a personal introduction to you, our resource partners, for follow up assistance.
The Port Connects Entrepreneurs and Students By Jennifer Coffman via The Port
New to the Council Bluffs entrepreneurial scene, Iowa Western Community College welcomes The Port, a campus entrepreneurial center. This technologically advanced workspace which is accessible to aspiring entrepreneurs and innovative students, opened July 2014 through the support of a Department of Labor Grant.
UI Partners Initiative to Help Businesses By Pat Dougherty via UI Partners
Small businesses form the backbone of Iowa’s economy, which is why we’re excited to have “boots on the ground” in Council Bluffs and Sioux City as part of the University of Iowa’s UI Partners initiative.
UI Partners, part of the UI Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development (OVPR&ED), provides IT/computer expertise and support to small businesses across the state.
10 Myths of Government Contracting By Beth White via CIRAS
Government Contracting, or stated more simply “selling to the government” at any level; Federal, State and Local, is enough to make many business owners cringe at the thought. To assist in the initial consideration of the market, we would like to take a stab at some of the myths surrounding working with the government.
UI Partners Providing Technical Assistance By IASourceLink Team
As highlighted in one of this quarter’s featured Resource Partner blogs, The University of Iowa has recently started a new program called UI Partners which works with entrepreneurs to solve information technology (IT) challenges using practical insights and ideas drawn from faculty, staff, and students. They are looking for clients all across the state who can use assistance with data management, website development, cloud technology, video conferencing, client relationship management, and more. Encourage your local owners to take this survey and to be entered in to win a tablet. Additional information can be found on the UI Partners website via the link below.
Venture Capital Musings... By John LaMarche via Venture Net Iowa
So you are interested in seeking investment from a venture capital fund? If you haven’t been down this path before, there are a few things you might want to be aware of before seeking investment from this funding source.
Midwest Educators Forum on Entrepreneurship:
Call For Presentations
Make plans now to attend and represent your region at the Midwest Educators Forum on Entrepreneurship in Mason City from June 24th through the 26th. Right now there is a call for presentations out until April 10th if you'd like to play a larger role in this great forum. The event is designed to bring college and university educators, entrepreneurial leaders and community champions together to share best practices for improving the entrepreneurial ecosystem for students, schools, businesses and communities. Contact Tim Putnam, director of the NIACC John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org or 641-422-4192.
Did you know that the State of Iowa does not have a “general” business license?
The State of Iowa does not have a general business license but rather regulates the activity of your business or profession. State of Iowa licensing, registrations or other requirements which must be met to be compliant are based upon the activity being regulated.
IASourceLink is the premier online resource connecting entrepreneurs and small businesses to more than 360 resource providers across Iowa. IASourceLink is brought to you by the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) in collaboration with the University of Northern Iowa Center for Business Growth and Innovation.
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