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Tuesday, March 19, 2019

1 Million Cups OKC aims to caffeinate entrepreneurship

One Million Cups

This story originally ran on VeloCityOKC.Com.

It has been said that one of the most vital ingredients of a successful startup is pretty simple: coffee. A cup of coffee with peers or mentors have led to countless connections and solutions for entrepreneurs with “that next great idea.”

1 Million Cups is a program started by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation in 2012 to educate, engage and inspire entrepreneurs around the country. In just six years, the program has expanded to more than 163 communities in 40 states.

“1 Million Cups has become sort of a rite of passage for an entrepreneurial community,” said Evan Fay, manager of innovation and entrepreneurship for the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber. “People from outside of a market know that if there is an active 1 Million Cups program in a community, that place has a vibrant startup environment.”

In OKC, the format is simple. Once a month, two speakers have 10 minutes to pitch their company and then the floor is opened up for questions.

Read the full story on VeloCityOKC.com.

entrepreneur, Film Row
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, February 19, 2019

OKCís economic engine

Tinker worker

While energy jobs are important to our local economy, most newcomers (and even some longtime residents) are shocked to learn that energy jobs make up only 3.5 percent of Oklahoma City’s employment base. The diversity of our local economy and the size of sectors such as aerospace and bioscience are a surprise to most. Here are some of the sectors having a big impact on our region’s economic health:

Aerospace
Oklahoma City’s aerospace industry is soaring, pun intended. Greater Oklahoma City’s aerospace industry represents more than 36,000 jobs at more than 230 public- and private-sector firms. The state of Oklahoma ranks 12th nationally in the number of aerospace engineers, fifth in aircraft mechanics and service technicians, and eighth in avionic technicians. Aerospace firms now produce $4.9 billion in goods and services locally.

Biotechnology
With the Oklahoma Health Center just north (east?) of downtown, Oklahoma City has long been a hub of biotech research. In recent years, Oklahoma City’s own research institutions have made significant advances in the fields of Alzheimer’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis and septicemia, to name a few. Firms in Greater Oklahoma City’s biotech sector boast annual revenues of more than $6.7 billion and employ more than 51,000 workers.

Technology and entrepreneurship
It is no secret that Oklahoma City’s pioneers, both in the past and present, have carried a spirit of entrepreneurship into their business and civic ventures. That spirit is very much alive today in Oklahoma City’s growing entrepreneurship community. From successful tech startups to the inventor’s workbench, OKC is a place where your ideas can get off the ground. (Looking for entrepreneurial resources? Visit www.greateroklahomacity.com [especially the EDIS and LBI tools] and www.i2e.org.).

Energy
Oklahoma City has long been considered a global oil capital, and with good reason. Oklahoma has a rich history of growing successful energy companies and our state Capitol even has a working oil rig on its grounds. But a lot has changed since the early wildcatter days of Oklahoma’s past. Oklahoma energy companies work in petroleum, compressed natural gas, wind power and solar energy, and they use state-of-the-art technology.

energy, entrepreneur, tech, aerospace, bioscience
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, June 20, 2017

The business of OKC biotech

Lab Scientist

Did you know biotech is one of OKC’s biggest industries and employment drivers? With more than $2.2 billion in compensation, supporting 51,000 employees and annual revenues of more than $6.7 billion, biotech is truly big business here in Oklahoma City. Companies and entities that comprise our city’s biotech sector run the gamut from pharmaceutical-related companies to research organizations and everything in between. Interested in working in this space? Good news, because opportunities abound and employment growth (23 percent since 2003) is expected to continue. Get more info at www.greateroklahomacity.com/industries/biotech/, and watch local media for stories on the Oklahoma BioScience Association and Oklahoma’s presence at the BIO International Convention this week.

bioscience, business, entrepreneur, tech
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Best of 2016

Riversport Rapids

This time of the year is filled with “Best of Lists.” Best of music, best of movies, best of television … you get the idea. So why not us? So here are our favorite posts of the past year. Below is a good example of what this blog is all about so you can easily share with your friends and show them why this blog is such a good and entertaining resource. Consider it a “Here-are-five-important-things-a-newbie–to-OKC-needs-to-know” list:

  • With or without a paddle- Maybe no place in OKC had a bigger 2016 than the Oklahoma River. The opening of the RIVERSPORT Rapids gave citizens and visitors an experience you can’t find anywhere else, whitewater rafting in a metropolitan downtown.
  • Let’s hear it for the beer- The craft beer scene in Oklahoma City has been on the rise for a while with some local breweries who have won big honors. However, recent efforts to modernize our state’s liquor laws have set the stage for local breweries to reach a whole new level.
  • Area of innovation- Entrepreneurship has been in our city’s DNA since its founding in a single day. This year an effort in placemaking centered around a proposed innovation district took huge strides towards reality.
  • Making a mark on aviation history- Our city and state have played an underrated role in the evolution of aviation. From early pioneers like Wiley Post to astronauts like Shannon Lucid, the Sooner State has been on the forefront of aerospace innovation.
entrepreneur, history, Innovation District, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma River, water sports, aviation, beer
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, September 20, 2016

There is more than meets the eye in the OKC economy

OKC Skyline

While energy jobs are the first thing that pops into most people’s mind when talking about the Oklahoma City economy, most new residents (and even some longtime residents) are surprised to find out how big industries like aerospace, biotech and technology are in the metro. Ever wonder why Oklahoma City ranks so high as a place for job seekers? The growth and stability of these industries are definite contributors to our success.

Aerospace
With recent announcements of job growth from Boeing and Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma City’s aerospace industry is soaring, pun intended. Greater Oklahoma City’s aerospace industry represents more than 36,000 jobs at more than 230 public- and private-sector firms. The state of Oklahoma ranks 12th nationally in the number of aerospace engineers, fifth in aircraft mechanics and service technicians, and eighth in avionic technicians. Aerospace firms now produce $4.9 billion in goods and services locally, up from $4.3 billion as of 2011.

Biotechnology
With the Oklahoma Health Center just north of downtown, Oklahoma City has long been a hub of biotech research. In recent years, Oklahoma City’s own research institutions have made significant advances in the fields of Alzheimer’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and septicemia, to name a few. Firms in Greater Oklahoma City’s biotech sector boast annual revenues of more than $6.7 billion and employ more than 51,000 workers.

Technology and entrepreneurship
It is no secret that Oklahoma City’s pioneers, both in the past and present, have carried a spirit of entrepreneurship into their business and civic ventures. That spirit is very much alive today in Oklahoma City’s growing entrepreneurship community. From successful tech startups to the inventor’s workbench, OKC is a place where your ideas can get off the ground. (Looking for entrepreneurial resources? Visit www.greateroklahomacity.com [especially the EDIS and LBI tools] and www.i2e.org.). For more on the entrepreneur scene in Oklahoma City check out http://viewer.zmags.com/publication/35fc33e7#/35fc33e7/1.

Energy
Oklahoma City has long been considered a global oil capital, and with good reason. Oklahoma has a rich history of growing successful energy companies, and our state Capitol even has a working oil rig on its grounds. But a lot has changed since the early wildcatter days of Oklahoma’s past. Oklahoma energy companies work in petroleum, compressed natural gas, wind power and solar energy, and they use state-of-the-art technology. In fact, GE Research’s first industry-specific research center recently opened in Oklahoma City and will bring the most updated oil and gas technology to Oklahoma City’s energy companies. 

tech, aerospace, bioscience, employment, energy, entrepreneur, jobs
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Rankings round up

Civic Center Lawn

We aren’t the only people to brag about OKC. In fact, organizations all over the nation are naming Oklahoma City as one of the top cities for its residents’ purchasing power, its housing market and its job market. Read on to hear what people are saying about Oklahoma City.

OKC Among the Top Cities Rebounding from the Great Recession – CNBC
OKC Ranks No. 1 for Quality of Life – Business Facilities
Oklahoma City Ranked as One of the Best Cities for 20-Somethings – Angie’s List
Best Cities for Jobs? You know OKC Makes the List – Glassdoor
OKC Ranked in Top 10 for Best Cities to Start a Career - WalletHub
OKC Named Most Affordable Metro for Young Adults - CareerTrends
OKC is the No. 1 Place in America for First-Time Homebuyers – SmartAssest
New Study: OKC Ranks No. 1 for Women Entrepreneurs – Merchant Cash USA
You Get More Apartment for Your Buck in OKC – Forbes

OKC’s accolades are too lengthy to list here, but you can read them all at A Better Life OKC.

cost of living, entrepreneur, housing, jobs, Oklahoma City
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Area of innovation

Innovation District

We say it loudly, we say it proudly, and we proclaim it roundly—like leaves on trees and green on peas, entrepreneurship is in Oklahoma City’s very DNA. We’re going to stop the rhyming (for now) just so we can point out that no other city can lay claim to the kind of beginnings and history our city has experienced. Oklahoma Citians have proven time and time again that we’re adept at taking advantage of opportunities, figuring out solutions to problems and working together to remove obstacles to our success.

One of the coolest things that we’re doing in that vein is looking at ways to bring together all the entrepreneurship, innovation and assets in the Automobile Alley district and the Oklahoma Health Center area in order to take innovation and entrepreneurial activity there to the next level. Along with our friends at The Brookings Institution and Project for Public Spaces, the OKC “innovation district” partners have begun an 18-month study of this area, looking at its economic strength, quality of place, current assets and coming up with ways of linking people, places and creating more synergy and entrepreneurial activity. It’s a very OKC thing to do, when you think about it. Get more information on this effort and sign up for updates at www.okcinnovation.com and following @OKCinnovation on Twitter, and (now back to the rhyming) you can stay-up-to-date soundly, if not profoundly. And if they were around today, innovative luminaries like Antonio Gaudi would surely drive an Audi, say howdy, and get rowdy down at JJ’s Alley after hanging out and working and creating economic value in the innovation district.

entrepreneur, Innovation District
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Attain some entrepreneurial VeloCity

Pardon the pun in the headline, but hey! Speaking of innovation and entrepreneurship, did you know we recently published an edition of VeloCity, OKC’s e-magazine, specifically devoted to startup activity here in OKC? Put down the Pokemon Go for a few seconds and get some training on local entrepreneurship instead. Check out www.greateroklahomacity.com/startups to read articles, see videos and other great features on some of our biotech stars, tech-based startups, some of the hotspots for tech innovation—and even a look at some of Oklahoma City’s past “startups” that have wrought great success. Level up when it comes to startups in OKC!

Save

Save

entrepreneur, Innovation District, tech
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



So whatícha want, fledgling entrepreneur?

(with apologies to the Beastie Boys)

Well, just plug this in like you’re named Beuller, Ferris

You can get Easy Cheese here, not like you’re in Paris

You know we get fly without getting (illegally) high

You can get entrepreneurial info and I’m-a tell you all why!

 

That’s right, future entrepreneur, you’re not losing your mind. Did you know our new economic development website has info to help you along your entrepreneurial journey? Just head over to www.greateroklahomacity.com’s Small Business section and check out the links at the top, like our SizeUp Tool for market information and research, the Entrepreneurs in OKC section for inspiration, and the Resources for Entrepreneurs to get some insight and info to help get your innovative idea and business off the ground, right here in Oklahoma City, one of the best large cities to start a business.

Save

Save

business, entrepreneur
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Resources for retailers

For Sale Sign

What makes OKC a prime place for retailers? It could be that we continue to have one of the lowest unemployment rates in the entire country for major metropolitan areas. Or it could be our low cost of living which for us at Better Life headquarters simply means more money for shopping. One thing is for certain, retailers love OKC and we, of course, love the steady stream of new shopping and dining options.

Has all this talk about retail success made you wonder about maybe opening up your own shop and trying your hand? You might be surprised to learn that the graduate entrepreneurship programs at both University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State University ranked in the top 25 recently by the Princeton Review. So you can get the skills you need to succeed right here at home.

If you are ready to try your hand at the fast-paced life of a retailer, you’re in luck: okcretail.com is a website dedicated to helping the world know about how easy it is to find retail success in OKC. Scout for locations, pull demographic reports, find out about permitting and even peruse property listings from the literally anywhere. You can also hear success stories from others who are proud to have a retail presence in OKC.

college, entrepreneur, retail
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, December 15, 2015

OKCRetail.com

OKCRetail.com website

OK, prospective entrepreneur. Has all this retail talk made you wonder about maybe opening up your own shop and flipping the script from shopper to shoppee? You’re in luck: okcretail.com is a website dedicated to helping the world know about how easy it is to find retail success in OKC. With some of the online tools available, you can scout for locations, pull demographic reports, find out about permitting and even peruse property listings, among other info. Check it out!

entrepreneur, retail
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Variety is the spice of OKCís economy

Tinker Air Force Base

Oklahoma City has a robust job market with several strong industries, all of which contribute to the area’s low unemployment rate. Ever wonder why Oklahoma City ranks so high as a place for job seekers? The growth and stability of these industries are definite contributors to our success.

Aerospace
With recent announcements of job growth from Boeing and Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma City’s aerospace industry is soaring, pun intended. Greater Oklahoma City’s aerospace industry represents more than 38,000 jobs at more than 300 public- and private-sector firms. The state of Oklahoma ranks 12th nationally in the number of aerospace engineers, fifth in aircraft mechanics and service technicians, and eighth in avionic technicians.

Biotechnology
With the Oklahoma Health Center just north of downtown, Oklahoma City has long been a hub of biotech research. In recent years, Oklahoma City’s own research institutions have made significant advances in the fields of Alzheimer’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and septicemia, to name a few. Firms in Greater Oklahoma City’s biotech sector boast annual revenues of more than $4.1 billion and employ more than 27,800 workers.

Energy
Oklahoma City has long been considered a global oil capital, and with good reason. Oklahoma has a rich history of growing successful energy companies, and our state Capitol even has a working oil rig on its grounds. But a lot has changed since the early wildcatter days of Oklahoma’s past. Oklahoma energy companies work in petroleum, compressed natural gas, wind power and solar energy, and they use state-of-the-art technology. In fact, GE Research’s first industry-specific research center is being constructed in Oklahoma City and will bring the most updated oil and gas technology to Oklahoma City’s energy companies.  

Technology and entrepreneurship
It is no secret that Oklahoma City’s pioneers, both in the past and present, have carried a spirit of entrepreneurship into their business and civic ventures. That spirit is very much alive today in Oklahoma City’s growing entrepreneurship community. From successful tech startups to the inventor’s workbench, OKC is a place where your ideas can get off the ground. (Looking for entrepreneurial resources? Visit www.growinokc.com, www.greateroklahomacity.com [especially the EDIS and LBI tools] and www.i2e.org.). For more on the entrepreneur scene in Oklahoma City check out www.velocityokc.com.

aerospace, bioscience, energy, entrepreneur, jobs, tech
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



VeloCity

Velocity 11 Cover

Now that you are up to speed on what makes the Oklahoma City economy tick, aren’t you ready to tell your friends, family and coworkers all about what makes OKC great? Of course you are and here at the Better Life Headquarters we want to make it easier for your. Let us introduce you to VeloCity, Oklahoma City’s digital magazine. Some of you have already read an issue of VeloCity, if so give yourself a high five while no one is looking, but if not, each issue is jam packed with stories and dynamic video that help tell our city’s stories. The most recent issue is all about entrepreneurship and startups in the region, but be sure to click on the archives to take a gander at past issues. VeloCity is a great tool to pass along to anyone who you think might need some more information on OKC. 

entrepreneur, jobs, Oklahoma City, velocity
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, March 10, 2015

SXSW: Meet Oklahoma in Austin

Music, film, interactive? What’s the deal with those and why do we care? Well, according to the Inter-American Development Bank, creative industries contribute more than 10 percent to the U.S. GDP, with a higher percentage of young folks in the workforce than elsewhere in the economy. It goes without saying that growing our creative industries and keeping and recruiting the minds that power them are important to Oklahoma’s future. We support these areas, integral to our cultural and economic scene, and work to help grow them. As part of that effort, for the past four years, the Greater OKC Chamber has been partnering with some of our friends to promote Oklahoma’s creative industries and opportunities to excel here to the world at the SXSW conference and trade show in Austin, Texas. This year, under the “Meet Oklahoma” banner,  the Chamber and our partners will occupy a 20x20-foot booth at the SXSW trade show to help get the good word out about all the opportunities available in our great state’s film, music and interactive / tech / startup areas. If you’re going to be in Austin, be sure to come by! Give us a shout on Twitter @meetoklahoma and get more info at http://www.meet-oklahoma.com/.

music, tech, entrepreneur, film
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Turning Innovation into Enterprise: i2E

One of our good friends and partners in growing OKC’s tech / biotech / entrepreneurial industries is i2E. i2E is a nonprofit that’s “focused on growing innovative small businesses in Oklahoma and making a positive impact on the state’s economy.” In addition to collaborating with Oklahoma’s universities to commercialize technologies and programs like the Governor’s Cup Collegiate Business Plan competition, which helps students turn business ideas into cash and actual businesses, i2e also helps fledgling (or even serial) entrepreneurs, inventors, researchers and more get their projects on the road to growth and profitability – helping develop Oklahoma’s homegrown entrepreneurism into successes that ultimately employ more and more Oklahomans. And that’s good for all of us! To learn more about i2E, check out its website and attend one of its great events like the BioSummit, Brewfest, Who Wants to Be an Entrepreneur Workshop and more!

bioscience, business, entrepreneur, tech
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Are you an entrepreneur? Join us at a Summit

Focused on growing innovative small businesses in Oklahoma, the nonprofit i2E will hold its free annual Entrepreneurial Summit from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 17.

Dave Berkus, speaker, author and early-stage private-equity investor, will give the keynote address in the Renaissance Ballroom at the Cox Convention Center, 10 N Broadway Ave. He is considered one of the most active angel investors in the country and is past chairman of Tech Coast Angels, one of the largest angel networks in the United States.

The Summit also will offer a panel on local funding sources and business resources that are vital to assisting entrepreneurs in starting, growing or expanding their business.

The event concludes with a networking luncheon with entrepreneurial college students who will be participating simultaneously in the annual “Who Wants to Be an Entrepreneur” workshop.

Register

free, networking, business, entrepreneur
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Oklahoma Entrepreneurs Take Center Stage at SXSW

When we convene at The Buffalo Lounge while the interactive part of the South By Southwest festival is going on in Austin, Texas, we’ll be closely watching a group of carefully selected Oklahoma entrepreneurs competing for up to $10,000 in prizes during the Interactive Elevator Pitch Competition.

On March 10 in the Buffalo Lounge, these entrepreneurs will have 90 seconds each to tell about their innovative companies. These smarty pants business folks were selected by a panel of investment professionals at i2E, Inc.

Take a look at the companies who will be pitching their awesomeness in Austin:

These interactive entrepreneurs are finalists in the competition for $10,000 in cash awards in front of a live audience and a panel of judges.

Did you know that SXSW helped launch or accelerate well known tech companies Twitter, Storify, Foursquare, Phonebooth Free, GroupMe and GameSalad? It’s true. Who knows? Maybe one or a few of these entrepreneurs from Oklahoma competing in the Elevator Pitch will be the next big thing in tech.

For more information about SXSW, click here.

Oklahoma, entrepreneur, festivals
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Where to begin? In Oklahoma City.

So you’ve got this great idea and you’re ready to trek into the world of entrepreneurship. Where do you begin? From the amount of capital needed to where to go for advice, the process can be daunting. But perhaps one of the most important decisions an entrepreneur will face is where to locate in order to have access to the best support and resources. We suggest right here in Greater Oklahoma City.

Over the last decade, our region has invested millions of dollars in the areas entrepreneurs need it the most - infrastructure, access to capital and support.

Greater Oklahoma City has several organizations dedicated specifically to supporting high-tech entrepreneurs and are walking alongside entrepreneurs through the startup process. They include:

  • GrowInOKC.com is a website specifically geared toward the OKC entrepreneur, with interviews, how-tos, news for entrepreneurs, and other resources.
  • i2E is an Oklahoma City-based company dedicated specifically to growing innovative small businesses by helping entrepreneurs, researchers and companies commercialize their technologies and access capital.
  • Office of Entrepreneurial Development, which provides resources and assistance to entrepreneurs in high-growth sectors; and
  • OCAST (the Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology), an agency dedicated to investing in technology transfer and commercialization.
entrepreneur, Oklahoma, business, community
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)