THINC IOWA: Startup Conversation Starts Here

Posted on: 7:25 pm, October 10, 2012, by

Four hundred people from 20 states, someone may have thought of the next Google, Facebook or Recbob.

“Recbob’s all about making sports after work more fun,” says John Schnipkoweit. 

Schnipkoweit grew frustrated wondering whether his fellow weekend warriors would actually show up for games. So he developed Recbob as a Facebook application to track schedules, who can make it and who can’t. 

It puts the fun back into sports.

But finding support for a startup business’s sometimes far from fun.

At Thinc Iowa, people with startup ideas talk about overcoming the risks with others facing the same challenges.

Part of what they talk about is embracing the culture. They even had a little take on those nerdy pocket protectors but they’re important facts inside.  Dwolla, Pinterest, Smart IG all started in this state and went big. 

Iowa’s governor offered what could become a quarter billion dollar incentives package to lure an Egyptian fertilizer company’s 165 jobs to southeast Iowa.

But a former startup sensation who turned AOL into a mega-company says offering big money to big companies isn’t always the best business deal.

Steve Case says, “There’s the large businesses, the fortune 500s, the small business, main street restaurant, dry cleaners and so forth. They’re both really important, but the most important is actually the one that gets the least amount of attention which are the young high growth entrepreneurial companies. That’s where the job growth comes from.”

Thinc Iowa hopes job growth grows from conversations there and politicians will keep that talk going.

John says, “Just using their political capital to shine a spotlight on what’s happening here. Because people don’t understand what startups are.”