A new website is designed to be a place where Iowans who have ideas for launching businesses can find help reaching their goals. The website “iowaentrepreneur.com” aims to create a statewide network of entrepreneurs, potential investors and service providers. Kurt Heiar of Iowa City heads the Iowa Coalition for Innovation and Growth, which launched the site. “Iowa has many public and private resources and a plethora of efforts already underway but what our group saw was the need to somehow put all of these efforts under an umbrella so people could connect with one another,” Heiar says. He says it’s not just for start-up businesses either. Young companies or mid-stage companies often need management mentoring, various services or a network of contacts — all of which the website can provide. He says the site has been online a few months and it’s getting thousands of “hits” and has already generated a number of success stories. Heiar says “angel” investors or entrepreneurs and even university researchers are using the website as a portal to connect face-to-face with others who can help them to advance. Heiar is CEO of the Ames-based Regena Corporation, a specialty pharmaceutical firm focused on the dental and dermatology markets. He says the website offers a wide array of helpful information for wanna-be captains of industry. The site includes a real-time calendar of events from local brown-bag luncheons to statewide conferences, instructions on creating business plans and even a glossary of terms so people can learn the lingo of investment banking before going out to try and raise money. Again the website is “iowaentrepreneur.com”.
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