Queen City Angels and Black Achievers Forge Strategic Partnership to Advance Entrepreneurship and Angel Investing

Black Achievers is a prominent networking organization dedicated to connecting African American professionals nationwide. With this partnership, QCA hopes to further enhance diversity and inclusion efforts for its membership.

CINCINNATI, May 2, 2024 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ — Queen City Angels (QCA), the oldest organized angel group in the Midwest, today announced a strategic partnership with Black Achievers, a prominent networking organization dedicated to connecting African American professionals nationwide. The partnership aims to mutually grow memberships while championing entrepreneurship and investing education as a core value for both organizations.

“QCA and Black Achievers will take advantage of our respective strengths to foster inclusive growth and opportunities within our communities,” said Scott Jacobs, executive director of QCA. As part of this partnership, QCA will share insights about angel investing at Black Achievers’ upcoming business academy, and Black Achievers will promote QCA’s Entrepreneur Boot Camp. The two-day event June 4-5, 2024, equips small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs with essential skills and guidance to launch and grow successful ventures. “Black Achievers is committed to empowering our members with the knowledge and resources needed to excel in their professional pursuits,” said Michael Moore, President of Black Achievers. “QCA has a proven track record of supporting and developing successful small businesses through a variety of programs and events. Our joint outreach initiatives will expand opportunities for our members and give them access to the resources they need to grow their businesses.”

“We are thrilled to join forces with Black Achievers in our shared mission to strengthen small businesses and cultivate diversity in the investment landscape,” said Jacobs. “By combining our expertise and networks, we can expand our respective memberships and inspire individuals from diverse backgrounds to grow businesses and consider angel investing opportunities.”
Over the past 4-5 years, QCA has made significant strides in attracting diverse participants to its annual Boot Camp and as members of the association. With this partnership, QCA hopes to further enhance diversity and inclusion efforts for its membership and the Boot Camp. Every year, dozens of small business owners attend the event to take advantage of expert speakers and learning sessions that provide insights to support them on their entrepreneurial journeys. QCA will use its network and reach to support the growth and expansion of Black Achievers membership, currently totaling 6,000 in Cincinnati and 3,000 in Columbus.

About Queen City Angels
Queen City Angels (QCA) is a Cincinnati, Ohio-based professional angel investor group with over 190 angel investor members residing in more than 20 states. QCA members include successful entrepreneurs, former C-suite corporate executives, R&D/technical experts in life sciences, IT, and advanced materials, and others with related backgrounds. QCA leverages its proprietary Standards + Practices Guide to educate, train, and mentor both entrepreneurs and angel investors. QCA members typically donate approximately 50,000 hours per year in pro-bono mentoring, coaching, and guidance for entrepreneurs to improve their success and the success of angel investors. Since 2000, QCA members have directly invested over $110 million in more than 110 portfolio companies. The total capital invested in these companies, including QCA members’ capital, syndication partners’ capital, follow-on venture capital funds, and venture debt is more than $875 million. CB Insights ranked QCA second out of 370 national angel organizations. For more information, visit https://www.qca.com.

About Black Achievers
Black Achievers, Inc. was founded in 2018 by Michael R. Moore. Black Achievers is now one of the largest Black Professional organizations in the United States. With over 6,000 members in Cincinnati and over 120,000 members nationwide. The organization’s mission is to connect, educate and economically empower African Americans. Serving as a pipeline of diverse talent for nonprofits and corporations. For more information visit: http://www.blackachievers.com

Media Contact

Scott Jacobs, Queen City Angels, 513-373-6972, sjacobs@qca.comwww.qca.com

Angel Capital Association Honors Tony Shipley with the Hans Severiens Award for his Incomparable Contributions to the Angel Community

Las Vegas, NV (July 10, 2023) – Queen City Angels’ Chairman and Co-Founder Tony Shipley’s pride for the more than 190 women and men who make up their membership as well as the coaching and mentoring they provide to entrepreneurs, is evident. In fact, winning the Hans Severiens Award at the 2023 ACA Summit of Angel Investing is a validation of his profound efforts to grow and support angel investing nationally through the Angel Capital Association as well as the community in which he works.

The Hans Severiens Award recognizes personal impact on the advancement of angel investing globally and highlights the special relationship that angels and entrepreneurs build to innovate, create jobs, and drive the economy. The ACA honored Shipley for his many contributions to this community at the 2023 ACA Summit of Angel Investing.

Since 2000, Shipley has led the Queen City Angels group (based in Cincinnati, OH), served as a board member for the ACA including a term as Chairman of the Board and worked tirelessly for the founding of the Angel Investor Foundation and chaired its capital campaign.

Given all his experience, there are still investments and stories that stand out in a storied career. As an example, early in QCA’s history, the group discovered a technology developed at a children’s hospital that could potentially be used to quickly prescribe the correct medication for people suffering from mental illness. Prior to this technology, the process had been an “educated guess” on which drug to initially prescribe. Failing improvement, doctors would have to pivot to another drug – a tedious and time-consuming process. This new technology relied on matching a person’s DNA makeup with psychiatrist drugs best suited for that DNA.

“It required many years and millions of dollars to prove the concept, but the test, known as Genesight, has been in the market for several years and the most recent report shows that more than 2,000,000 people have undergone the test. The results are used by doctors to recommend the most appropriate drug to treat the medical condition. This technology has been especially useful in treating children who are experiencing some form of mental illness,” said Shipley.

As research has shown including that of the Angel Funders Report and the data efforts of the ACA, entrepreneurs are largely the innovation and job-creation engines for our country. Looking to the future, Shipley has his eye on how angel investing can continue to support the entrepreneurial ecosystem.

“My hope is that ALL entrepreneurs seeking funding for their unique idea(s) can find enough angel and early-stage investors who will not only invest in their companies but will also provide the appropriate support and mentoring typically provided by investors in our asset class. Additionally, I support the vision that ACA and AIF can work with angel and early-stage investors to better prepare them for investing in this phase of a company’s life cycle, and to help them produce better outcomes for both them and the entrepreneurs they support. Doing these things will ultimately help the USA be more competitive on the world stage,” said Shipley.

About Queen City Angels

Queen City Angels (QCA) is a Cincinnati, Ohio-based professional angel investor group with over 190 angel investor members residing in 20 states. QCA members include successful entrepreneurs, former C-suite corporate executives, R&D/technical experts in life sciences, IT, and advanced materials, and others with related backgrounds. QCA leverages its proprietary Standards + Practices Guide to educate, train, and mentor both entrepreneurs and angel investors. QCA members typically donate approximately 40,000 hours per year in pro-bono mentoring, coaching, and guidance for entrepreneurs to improve their success and the success of angel investors. Since 2000, QCA members have directly invested over $100 million in more than 110 portfolio companies. The total capital invested in these companies, including QCA members’ capital, syndication partners’ capital, follow-on venture capital funds, and venture debt is more than $875 million. CB Insights ranked QCA second out of 370 national angel organizations. For more information, visit https://www.qca.com.

About the Angel Capital Association (ACA)

The Angel Capital Association (ACA) is the professional association of global angel investors to offer education, best practices, data, public policy advocacy, and significant benefits and resources to its membership of more than 16,000 accredited investors, who invest individually or through its 250+ angel groups, accredited platforms, and family offices. Visit angelcapitalassociation.org.

Contact: Dannielle Stewart, Director of Marketing, P: 720-496-3646, dstewart@angelcapitalassociation.org.
Photos available here: https://bit.ly/TonyShipley2023.

Queen City Angels and Griesing Mazzeo Law Partner to Advance Local and Regional Entrepreneurial Ecosystem

Queen City Angels (QCA) and Griesing Mazzeo Law, LLC have partnered toexpand resources to Cincinnati’s and the region’s start-up founders and their businesses. Griesing Mazzeo Law is QCA’s first women-owned law firm partner and brings to the region experience promoting diversity and inclusivity and empowering women and minorities in business and the legal profession. Griesing Mazzeo Law is part of the National Association of Minority and Women-Owned Law Firms (NAMWOLF).

“There has never been a better time to be an entrepreneur in the Greater Cincinnati Region with the depth and breadth of resources and service providers now available,” said Sue Bevan Baggott, member of QCA, and chair of QCA’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee. “We are extremely impressed with Griesing Mazzeo Law, and our community is better off because the firm chose to establish an office in Cincinnati. This is an important partnership for us and our portfolio companies for several reasons including the opportunity to connect our angels and our portfolio companies with the legal professionals at Griesing Mazzeo Law to capitalize on their leadership in inclusivity and diversity.”

“We are thrilled to become Queen City Angels’ first women-owned law firm partner,” said Jessica L. Mazzeo, Member and Chief Operating Officer of Griesing Mazzeo Law. “Aside from providing high-caliber legal advice and serving as advocates for our clients, many of us here at Griesing Mazzeo Law are entrepreneurs ourselves. It is with that mindset that we can fully embrace the dedication, drive and unique nuances of the start-up industry. We are looking forward to what our partnership with Queen City Angels brings, including fostering new relationships that further bolster Cincinnati’s entrepreneurial ecosystem.”

Scott Jacobs, Executive Director of QCA added, “QCA is becoming a regional and national player in start-up funding, so it’s important that we partner with the right service providers to help advance the efforts of our portfolio companies and their entrepreneurs. Minority and women-owned businesses receive an extremely small share of investment capital, and likewise have limited access to great legal services. Together, QCA and Griesing Mazzeo Law are working to change that.” About Griesing Mazzeo Law Griesing Mazzeo Law, LLC is a full-service women-owned and operated law firm based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with satellite offices in Arizona, Florida, New Jersey, New York, and Ohio. We are proudly certified as a Women Business Enterprise (WBE) by WBENC, enabling us to tackle opportunities specifically intended to promote diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. Since its inception, the Firm has been committed to the promotion and advancement of women and diverse lawyers as we believe that a more inclusive legal profession is a more successful one. Griesing Mazzeo Law aims to combat the forces that keep women and minorities out of leadership roles and from staying in the profession at all, which we embody through our Firm’s culture, the long-standing relationships we’ve built and maintained with women and diverse attorneys, and our continued commitment to institutions and organizations that foster inclusivity in the legal field.

About Queen City Angels Queen City Angels (QCA) is a Cincinnati, Ohio-based professional angel investor group with 191 angel investors members residing in 20 states. QCA members include successful entrepreneurs, former C-suite corporate executives, R&D/technical experts in life sciences, IT, and advanced materials, and others with related backgrounds. QCA leverages its proprietary Standards + Practices Guide to educate, train, and mentor both entrepreneurs and angel investors. QCA members typically donate approximately 40,000 hours per year in pro-bono mentoring, coaching, and guidance for entrepreneurs to improve their success and the success of angel investors. Since 2000, QCA members have directly invested over $100 million in more than 100 portfolio companies. The total capital invested in these companies, including QCA members’ capital, syndication partners’ capital, follow-on venture capital funds and venture debt is more than $875 million. CB Insights ranked QCA second out of 370 national angel organizations. For more information, visit https://www.qca.com.

The show with Tactile Engineering

Connecting the dots is a metaphor to describe the understanding gained by a series of seemingly disconnected events that connect and lead to a specific conclusion. 

This conversation is about a unique type of dots, specifically Braille dots. Braille was invented over 200 years ago to provide a method for visually impaired people to read using combinations of six dots to represent letters and words. Books translated into Braille are available for the visually impaired.  

According to the National Federation of the Blind, fewer than 10 percent of the 1.3 million people who are legally blind in the United States are Braille readers. Further, a mere 10 percent of blind children are learning to read Braille. In addition, over 70 percent of blind adults are unemployed, and as many as 50 percent of blind high school students drop out of high school.

The information tsunami brought on by the Internet left the visually impaired with a significant problem. How can these individuals, including K-12 students, access education, be gainfully employed, and participate in the digital world?

Join us as Dave Schleppenbach discusses the journey to develop a digital Braille technology to provide the visually impaired access to the digital world, including digital content, games, graphics, and animation.

The topics addressed in this interview are:

  • 00:00 Intro to Dave Schleppenbach, CEO of Tactile Engineering
  • 01:40 Overview of the Tactile Engineering device for the visually impaired
  • 03:06 How the Cadence device works
  • 04:31 The statistics on the visually impaired population
  • 05:03 The relationship between Braille and raised print
  • 07:02 The market size for visual impairment
  • 08:49 Mobility of the Braille device
  • 09:40 Starting with deployment in local markets
  • 11:55 Deciding to address blindness with technology
  • 13:26 From tinkering to a robotic factory
  • 14:30 The factory tour
  • 18:00 Financial support product development
  • 20:30 How well do adults learn to use the Cadence device?
  • 22:00 Sources of funding for Tactile Engineering
  • 23:00 What are the plans for the future?
  • 24:07 Contact information

Queen City Angels Closes Investment in Pittsburgh-based C360

CINCINNATI and PITTSBURGH – October 11, 2022 – Queen City Angels (QCA) is pleased to announce the closing of an investment in C360, a Pittsburgh-based computer vision SaaS company that provides solutions to leading broadcasters and sports leagues around the world. C360’s award-winning image processing and ultra-high-quality video output is used by the leaders in sports broadcasting, including the leading sports networks, as well as the most popular sports leagues in the United States. The QCA investment will help C360 continue to expand its reach and technology to deliver direct-to-consumer OTT (over-the-top) immersive experiences for viewers everywhere. “Oftentimes when we watch sports broadcasts, it’s the small things that make the biggest difference, such as the yard-to-gain markers or the pylon cameras in football that are critical to the game and the viewer experience,” said Thomas Browning, a member of QCA. “Rarely do people know the people and companies behind these technologies that improve the viewing experience, but we are fortunate for the opportunity to play a small part in what the future holds for C360 and sports fans around the world. C360 is truly changing how we experience live sports, and while their impact is already seen and felt by millions of viewers every week, there is so much more that they will do in the months and years to come.” Among C360’s products are technologies used in game action every week in collegiate and major sports leagues, including pylon cameras in professional and college football games; CornerCam for baseball games; NetCam for professional hockey; overhead cameras in college basketball; and onboard cameras in auto racing. The company’s technology helps capture immersive media for producers; up-close, in-game experiences for viewers; and exclusive content for broadcasters and channels. Fans can also use C360-developed apps to select their own viewpoint while C360’s content streams work in augmented, virtual, and mixed reality formats. C360’s technologies are also being used by the armed forces and other aerospace defense and security organizations. “We appreciate the confidence that QCA has in C360 and our leadership to execute on our vision for the future of sports media,” said Carlos Silva, CEO of C360. “We are literally looking at every angle of sport, bringing fans and viewers closer to the action, and helping our partners deliver the type and variety of high-quality content that keeps people tuning in. QCA’s investment will help us to continue to change how people watch and engage in sports.”

About Queen City Angels

Queen City Angels (QCA) is a group of more than 180 experienced angel investors in the Cincinnati region. QCA members reside in 18 states and include successful entrepreneurs and former corporate executives. QCA investor members evaluate early-stage angel investment opportunities and provide on-going mentoring to young businesses with exceptional growth potential. QCA members typically donate the equivalent of over $5,000,000 per year in pro-bono mentoring, coaching, and guidance for entrepreneurs to improve their success and the success of angel investors. Since 2000, QCA members have directly invested over $80 million in more than 100 portfolio companies. The total capital invested in these companies, including QCA members’ capital, syndication partners’ capital, follow-on venture capital funds and venture debt, is approximately $800 million. CB Insight ranked QCA second out of 370 national angel organizations. For more information, visit www.qca.com or contact Scott Jacobs sjacobs@qca.com.

About C360

C360 has pioneered original 360 technologies that deliver the highest quality non-stitched immersive video products, live output for broadcast and OTT platforms. C360’s proprietary process and ultra-high-quality output has earned relationships with Fox Sports, CBS Sports, ESPN, NBC Sports, TNT, NASCAR, NFL, NHL, AWS Sports among many others including sports betting operators and data providers. Key investors in C360 include sports venture capital company SeventySix Capital, Cosm, Queen City Angels and BlueTree Venture Fund. Former ESPN executive Jed Drake is also a board member of C360. To learn more about C360, go to www.c360live.com.

Angel-Backed Supply Dynamics Acquired by Exiger, Creating First End-to-End Supply Chain Visibility and Supplier Risk Management Solution

Combined solution integrates supply chain risk event monitoring and automated due diligence with advanced item-level visibility and multi-tier supply chain mapping to reduce cost, mitigate risk, and enhance compliance for sourcing, acquisition, and procurement professionals across public and private sectors.   CINCINNATI, OHIO – August 30, 2022 – Exiger, the leading SaaS supply chain risk management, third-party risk management and compliance company, announced today that it has acquired Supply Dynamics, one of Queen City Angels’ portfolio companies and the industry’s most sophisticated supply chain collaboration platform for tracking, tracing and choreographing the purchase and supply of subcontracted products, parts, raw materials and ingredients. “The combination of Exiger and Supply Dynamics is a force multiplier, not only because we believe they are the preeminent player in this market, but because we are equally committed to investing in the capabilities necessary to set a new industry standard that allows for informed, high-level decision-making within a matter of minutes.” said Supply Dynamics Founder and CEO, Trevor Stansbury.  The integration of Supply Dynamics’ products will enable end-to-end supply chain visibility and holistic risk management via a single, secure, cloud-based enterprise platform. “We are delighted to see another of our portfolio companies experience a successful exit,” said Queen City Angels founder and chair Tony Shipley.  “We are proud to have supported Supply Dynamics as they built the company to this exciting point,” added Shipley. Queen City Angels invested in Supply Dynamics in 2017, serving as the lead investor for that round.  “In addition to an investment from QCA’s First Fund V, we had nearly 20 members make personal ‘sidecar’ investments in that round, given our positive assessment of the company’s proposition and management team during due diligence,” said John Habbert, co-manager of QCA’s family of First Funds.  Other angel groups who invested include Ohio TechAngel Funds of Columbus, Ohio, managed by Rev1 Ventures. “It’s been a privilege to work with Trevor, his team and my colleagues on the Supply Dynamics Board,” said Ted Capossela, QCA member and representative on the Board.  “The acquisition by Exiger is an important validation of Supply Dynamics’ unique approach to ‘illuminating’ all elements of a customer’s supply chain,” added Capossela. “Since we started QCA more than 20 years ago, we have invested over $85 million in more than 100 companies, said Shipley.  “Our investments have been leveraged with over $700 million of additional capital invested by others in our portfolio companies.  Some of our earlier investments include Assurex Health (where we led the initial investment in the company), T-Pro Solutions, ConnXus, among a group of other successful companies.” “While we have a very strong current portfolio, we continue our work to identify additional investment opportunities,” said Scott Jacobs, QCA Executive Director.  “We continue to see strong ‘deal flow,’ both in the Cincinnati region and beyond.” ##### Additional information on the Supply Dynamics acquisition can be found here:   https://www.exiger.com/perspectives/exiger-acquires-supply-dynamics/ About Queen City Angels: Queen City Angels (QCA) is a group of more than 175 accredited investors in the Cincinnati region and beyond.  QCA members reside in 16 states and include former corporate executives, successful entrepreneurs, and many mid-career individuals passionate about working with start-ups.  QCA investor members evaluate early-stage angel investment opportunities and provide on-going mentoring to young businesses with exceptional growth potential.  QCA members typically contribute more than 20,000 hours per year in pro-bono mentoring, coaching, and guidance for entrepreneurs to improve their success and the success of angel investors.  Since 2000, QCA members have directly invested more than $85 million in over 100 portfolio companies.  The total capital invested in these companies, including QCA members’ capital, syndication partners’ capital, follow-on venture capital funds and venture debt is more than $700 million.  QCA’s First Fund VI, which was launched in 2019, currently has 30 active portfolio companies: Active Energy Systems, Alphyn Biologics, AKRU, Bert Thin Films, Cloverleaf, Content Status, ConveyMD, DART Displays, DAtAnchor, Divine Services Corp, Groupize, Guardian Medical, Healthy Roster, Include Health, Ischemia Care, Joot, Kurome Therapeutics, Medalink Systems, Peerro, Plankk, Qualifi, Ready Set Surgical, Resonado, Sense Neuro, ShareThis, Standard Bariatrics, SureImpact, 3 Bar Biologics and TPA Stream.  For more information, visit www.qca.com. About Supply Dynamics: Supply Dynamics provides Fortune 500 manufacturers with real-time visibility and control over the material requirements of their extended supply chain. Its innovative supply chain analytics solutions enable customers to reduce the cost of raw materials and component parts that go into their products, characterize and quantify risks, anticipate disruptions before they happen, enhance collaboration with supply chain stakeholders, and ensure that the timely purchase and supply of material-inputs is NEVER the reason parts are late to an end-use customer or in-field requirement. Supply Dynamics currently serves heavily regulated, global manufacturing companies in the oil and gas, automotive, aerospace and defense, power generation, chemical, plastics, and electronics industries. It also works with DOD Program Offices and a variety of US Government agencies, including the Navy and Defense Logistics Agency. Supply Dynamics’ product, SDX, is a highly secure, multi-tier supply chain collaboration platform, designed for complex, distributed manufacturing supply chains. It’s award winning (web-based) multi-enterprise platform, SDX, provides commercial and DOD customers with real-time visibility and control over the “material-input” requirements (metals, fasteners, plastics, electronics, etc.) that go into their products, equipment, or weapons systems – facilitating real-time monitoring and control of Tier 1-Tier N suppliers and item level bills of material. To learn more, visitsupplydynamics.com. About Exiger: Exiger is revolutionizing the way corporations, government agencies and banks manage risk and compliance through its combination of technology-enabled and SaaS solutions. In recognition of the growing volume and complexity of data and regulation, Exiger is committed to creating a more sustainable risk and compliance environment through its holistic and innovative approach to problem solving. Exiger’s mission to make the world a safer place to do business drives its award-winning AI technology platform built to anticipate the market’s most pressing needs related to evolving ESG, cyber, financial crime, third-party and supply chain risk. Exiger has won 30+ AI, RegTech and Supply Chain partner awards. Learn more at Exiger.com and follow Exiger on LinkedIn

Angel Groups Collaborate to Support Medical Device Portfolio Company ’ s $300 Million Exit

CINCINNATI, OHIO (PRWEB) AUGUST 26, 2022 The Board of Standard Bariatrics announced that it has entered in a definitive agreement with Teleflex Incorporated, a leading global provider of medical technologies, under which Teleflex will acquire Standard Bariatrics, a Queen City Angels portfolio company, upon the satisfaction of customary closing conditions, for an upfront cash payment of $170 million at closing, with additional consideration of up to $130 million payable upon the achievement of certain commercial milestones. “We couldn’t be prouder of Founder Dr. Jonathan Thompson and CEO Matt Sokany for all of their work to get Standard Bariatrics to this milestone,” said Queen City Angels founder and chair Tony Shipley. “We are delighted to have supported Standard Bariatrics along their journey and believe the commercial potential for their important surgical offerings are enhanced by this transaction,” added Shipley. Queen City Angels was an initial investor in Standard Bariatrics in 2016. “Standard Bariatrics represents one of the largest investments in a single portfolio company in our 22-year history,” said John Habbert, co-manager of QCA First Funds. “We’ve invested in six follow-on rounds to help fuel the company’s progress. This underscores our confidence in the incredible work of Mr. Sokany and Dr. Thompson, and their entire team.” In addition to Queen City Angels, other angel groups that invested are North Coast Ventures, Ariel Savannah Angel Partners, Life Science Angels, and Accelerant Fund. Other investors include JobsOhio, CincyTech, RC Capital, US Venture Partners, Hatteras Venture Partners, Rivervest and Emergent Medical Partners. Standard Bariatrics is another successful exit for a QCA portfolio company. “Since we started QCA more than 20 years ago, we have invested over $85 million in more than 100 companies, said Shipley. “Our investments have been leveraged with over $700 million of additional capital invested by others in our portfolio companies. Some of our earlier investments include Assurex Health (where we led the initial investment in the company), T-Pro Solutions, ConnXus, among a group of other successful companies.” “While we have a very strong current portfolio, we continue our work to identify additional investment opportunities,” said Scott Jacobs, QCA Executive Director. “We continue to see strong ‘deal flow,’ both in the Cincinnati region and beyond.” Additional information on the Standard Bariatrics transaction can be found here.

Queen City Angels Announces Third Frontier Award

Fund VI is the largest in the Queen City Angels’ history and includes $3.5 million in matching funds from the Ohio Third Frontier program. CINCINNATI – March 11, 2021 – Queen City Angels today announced additional capital secured from the Ohio Third Frontier Pre-Seed Program and the Ohio launch of its $15 million QCA First Fund VI (FFVI), the sixth in a family of funds and the largest fund in the group’s history. FFVI includes more than $10 million in private funds from QCA members and $3.5 million matched funds from the Ohio Third Frontier Pre-Seed Program. The Ohio Third Frontier Commission approved $70.5M in non-recourse loans to be awarded to 14 Ohio-based funds. QCA was the first angel group recipient and among the first overall recipients of Third Frontier funds dating back to 2003. Tony Shipley, founder of QCA, and John Habbert, director of QCA, will manage FFVI.

QCA’s Startup College® Trained 29 Startups at the 19th Annual Boot Camp

More than 100 entrepreneurs, angel investors and business experts gathered At Interact for Health June 4-5 to become the next wave of entrepreneurs and start-up savants at the 19th Annual Entrepreneur Boot Camp. The hands-on workshop started in 2001 has now trained over 643 entrepreneurs and provides an opportunity for anyone thinking about a start-up, small business owners, founders and start-up teams to learn from angel investors and experts about how to navigate the entrepreneurial waters.   Among the topics on the agenda are intellectual property, strategic marketing, contracts, social media, pitching angels and financials. The presentations included educational sessions, panel discussions and one-on-three (or 4!) meetings with local angels and other mentors from our local community.   Included on the agenda is Thomas Humphrey, partner at Wood Herron & Evans, who has now presented at every single Entrepreneur Boot Camp, his 19th session!   “The Boot Camp is an amazing opportunity to connect those with a start-up vision with the knowledge, resources and motivation they need to jumpstart or continue to build their dream,” said Humphrey. “I have had the great opportunity to participate in the Boot Camp since its inception, and every year I walk away inspired by individual entrepreneurs and the start-up community that is thriving in Cincinnati. This an event like no other, and it continues to grow because of the cooperation from those that want to learn how to be successful and those with the desire to share their success.”   Additional speakers will include:
  • Tony Shipley, founder and chairman of QCA
  • Marvin Abrinica, founder of Thrivera
  • Michael Hurley, partner at Calfee Halter
  • Mary Newman, partner at Dinsmore & Shohl
  • Scott Mindrum, QCA member, founder and CEO of CRäKN
  • Sally Kay, consultant and 36-year veteran of The Dow Chemical Company and GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare
  The Boot Camp will be held again next year on June 2-3 at Interact for Health. More information about the event can be found here: https://www.qcabootcamp.com/. Tickets are still available at online, you can register here: https://tinyurl.com/yys8avap   The event is sponsored by Startup College®, a registered trademark of the QCA, as well as marquee sponsor, HCDC Business Center; and supporting sponsor, KeyBank.

Miami U: Fueling the Entrepreneurial Machine

There’s a great deal of entrepreneurial buzz happening on the campus of Miami University. The Miami Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies is an internationally recognized program providing immersive, real-world experiences. The program has been ranked among the “Top 10 Undergraduate Public Schools for Entrepreneurship Studies” in the nation for 10 years in a row by Entrepreneur Magazine and The Princeton Review®.


The program is led in part by Mark Lacker, John W. Altman Clinical Professor of Entrepreneurship at Miami, helps students understand that they don’t have to be middle aged to be entrepreneurs, and there really is no better time than the present.


“The thesis of the program is that you learn how to start a business by doing it. Our program is practice based, not theory,” said Lacker. “Entrepreneurship requires creativity, and social and technical skills, and while many students may have those attributes, they still need a place to practice. That’s where Miami comes in, as well as organizations such as QCA.”


QCA and its members, several of which are alums of the university, are regulars on campus, helping to strengthen the programs commitment to immersive experiences.  

 

“QCA is one of the bellwethers in the region in terms of helping organizations start and scale,” said Lacker. “Partnering with QCA members is natural for us because of our practice-based curriculum that puts students in the field.”


It’s not uncommon for QCA members Scott Miller, Scott Avera, Kevin Martin, among others to be on campus judging business plan competitions, speaking on panels or talking to students about how to be entrepreneurs.


Lacker added, “We are teaching students how to be entrepreneurs, and who better to partner with us on that effort than angel investors who have built successful businesses, are using their own money to invest in other companies, and are ready and willing to share their experiences?”


Lacker values the growing entrepreneurial community in Cincinnati, and the understanding from the players in the ecosystem that everything starts with education, with programs such as Morning Mentoring, the Entrepreneurial Boot Camp and eKickStart.


“I was in HCBC 15 years ago, and one of the greatest things about being in that building was that if I didn’t know something, I could get help from someone in the same hallway. We have a really unique support system in the region, from the relationships between big companies and startups, to the handful of accelerators and the second largest angel network in the country. It’s why our entrepreneur students can be successful in Cincinnati.”