Entrepreneurs and investors met this morning at the Stamford Innovation Center with Congressman Jim Himes (CT-4) and Startup Connecticut to discuss opportunities for businesses to raise capital to help their companies grow. At the crux of the discussion was the recently-enacted Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act, which Himes helped write. Nearly 40 business owners shared ideas about resources and assistance that would help them create jobs, and investment experts who specialize in companies at various stages of development provided guidance on what makes certain businesses attractive to private investors.
"The future of the American economy--whether or not our kids have great jobs or face the risk of unemployment--depends on the success of the companies in this room," Himes said. "As we look for ways to improve and invest in our nation's future, we need to start with helping growing companies expand and create jobs."
Investment experts from the Angel Investor Forum, Cava Capital, and UBS provided insight into the impact of the JOBS Act on the availability of capital for businesses. A list of the startups that joined today's discussion follows this release.
Ryan Duques of Startup Connecticut facilitated the discussion. He serves as the Volunteer Legislative Liaison with Startup Connecticut and is the founder of a number of startup ventures, including TutaPoint.com.
"One of Startup Connecticut's most important roles is to connect communities and act as a catalyst for discussion on topics impacting high potential growth startups in the state. As one of the authors of the JOBS Act, Congressman Himes was able to provide excellent insight into what the new law might mean for entrepreneurs," said Duques. "However, I was more impressed by the amount of listening and not talking the Congressman did while the entrepreneurs and investors in the room conducted a robust and productive information exchange."
Startup Connecticut is a grassroots, entrepreneur-led initiative that works to bring entrepreneurs, startups, local talent, activities, mentorship, large companies, and local government together to help startups grow. The group is a member organization of the Startup America Partnership. Their work is based on the premise that young companies that grow create jobs. They believe entrepreneurship is a core American value and critical to the country's long term success. Nationwide, they have assembled more than $1 Billion worth of commitments from dozens of partners to support the growth of startups.
The Stamford Innovation Center offers inspiring physical workspaces and startup-centric programs that are built to serve one mission: "Accelerating the Entrepreneur's Voyage." Entirely focused on the success of the growing and diverse group of startups that are sprouting up all over southwestern Connecticut, the Center offers an environment where entrepreneurs can tap into the deep expertise, enthusiastic talent, proven service providers, and experienced angel and venture capital investors that live and work in the area. When these products and services are ready, the Center can assist through its connections throughout the tri-state area and at the local, regional, and state level of the Connecticut public sector.
"The Stamford Innovation Center is thrilled to host Congressman Himes along with a diverse group of entrepreneurs and investors to discuss the potential impact of the JOBS Act. We believe the JOBS Act is an important step in spurring job creation and innovation in our community," said Barry Schwimmer, Founder and Managing Partner of the Stamford Innovation Center. "We look forward to working with the Congressman to further serve our entrepreneurial community, thereby promoting the development of new exciting businesses and supporting entrepreneurs as their efforts progress from the living room to the board room."