Category Archives: The Startup Economy

Milwaukee catching Madison on startups

Move over, Madison, the startup economy is also on the march in Milwaukee. Two new venture funds in the Milwaukee region constitute another chapter along the entrepreneurial trajectory in the region. For the last ten years, there has been a … Read the rest

Do for startups what we did for The Bucks


If the state’s taxpayers made the same level of investment in the startup economy that they made in the new arena for the Milwaukee Bucks -- $250 million – they could launch 500 high growth startups at $500,000 apiece. At … Read the rest

Startup economy accelerates across Wisconsin

Wisconsin and Milwaukee have been making front-page news for their low levels of “business dynamism,” as so determined by experts in the cheap seats. The Kauffman Foundation of Kansas City rates us 50th of the states. From the front lines … Read the rest

Lubar, MCW, Abele jump start M7 start-up strategy

epic creative logo

The startup initiative in the M7 region keeps taking big jumps forward as important players big and small stake out different pieces of the action. Nothing could be more important. With major job growth in manufacturing a thing of the … Read the rest

‘Valley of Death’ must be crossed on bank side

The so-called “Valley of Death” for launching high growth companies is very real in Wisconsin, at least on one side of the financing equations. The first financing for a new venture usually comes from “friends, families and fools.” The next … Read the rest

Moral of Epic Creative success: support UWM

Jim Becker

Like the classic entrepreneurs of yesteryear, Jim Becker started his company, Epic Creative, in a garage. After graduating from the distinguished film and video department at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee – rated one of the top 20 in … Read the rest

Big Connecture exit heats startup economy

In the wake of high voltage success from the recently announced IPO of Connecture in the Milwaukee region, sparks are flying in the adolescent startup economy in Wisconsin. The Connecture IPO would have received high-five headlines had it happened in … Read the rest

Wisconsin needs to pay-it-forward like Silicon Valley

Greg Robinson, 4490 Ventures in Wisconsin

Successful entrepreneurs in Wisconsin need to “pay it forward,” like they do in Silicon Valley. That was a big part of the message for Wisconsin leaders from Greg Robinson, a transplant to the Badger state from Silicon Valley, where he … Read the rest

Entrepreneurs can reverse brain drain


Can the brain drain of more than 10,000 college graduates per year from Wisconsin be reversed? Some big hitters from Southeastern Wisconsin think it is already happening. Gary Grunau, who was awarded the George Dalton Inspirational Entrepreneur Award at a … Read the rest

Buyouts of startup firms prove sticky

A recent string of buyouts and expansions of business spawned by Wisconsin entrepreneurs ought to put to rest one misguided complaint about a state strategy that goes all out for high growth startups. Critics of public investments in a startup … Read the rest