Monthly Archives: April 2014

The Disruptive Power of Technology

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Michael Chui Interviews The Lean Startup Author

Companies are all too aware of the disruptive power of technology. The author of The Lean Startup argues that the competitive reaction of many organizations remains fatally flawed. Check out his recent interview with Michael Chui, a partner at the McKinsey Global Institute. For a copy of the interview transcript, click here

United Way Taking Social Innovation to a New Level

Life Is Good Donates 10% of Net Profit

United Way of Metropolitan Dallas is taking innovation to a whole new level starting from the ground floor. The GroundFloor, an accelerator fund and program that provides investment, mentorship and other resources to innovative existing and start-up organizations, supports social entrepreneurs who are working to make an impact in North Texas in the areas of education, income and health. The GroundFloor launched in 2013 and targets social innovation endeavors that would not typically be eligible for a grant funds through United Way’s highly competitive Community Impact Fund process.

Candidates, nonprofit and for-profit firms, are selected for support from the GroundFloor through an application process.  Only a select few of innovative companies or fellows, on the brink of creating or expanding the next big idea, are selected. These social innovation fellows predominantly focus on delivering new products or services that utilize innovative ways to help reduce poverty or improve health across North Texas.

The GroundFloor provides its participants with a three-pronged investment:

  • Financial capital, for seed and early stage ventures;
  • Human capital in the form of an intensive program led by mentors from the areas of entrepreneurship, academics, public policy and the social sector;
  • and Social capital, by connecting the GroundFloor’s participants with resources from more than 1,000 United Way corporate partners and more than 80 service providers. 

Click here to apply or to learn more.

4/29/14 – Daniel Garcia Talks Business Lending and Community Development

Click to Listen to the Show Live

Disruptive Mobile App Helps Houston Nonprofit Connect with Small Businesses

GPC 2014“This new app is a game changer for small businesses looking to connect with decision-makers,” says Raynese Edwards, Houston-based Business Strategist. Today, Government Procurement Connections, Inc. (GPC), a Houston-based nonprofit agency hosted its inaugural State of Procurement event at Houston Community College’s Southeast campus’ Learning HUB. Hundreds of small business owners attended the event to learn more about multi billion dollar government contracting opportunities.

“Last year, the Federal government spent $500 billion dollars on products and services and 23 percent was awarded to minority, veteran and woman-owned prime contractors and sub-contractors,” stated Valerie Coleman, Procurement Center Representative for the United States Small Business Administration. But, most innovative small businesses continue to find the government procurement process to be daunting and confusing. There’s a disconnect between agency purchasing managers looking to purchase products and services and the vast number of viable vendors ready and able to sell products and services to them. This year, GPC subscribed to a new mobile technology which was created by a woman-owned firm to solve that very problem. Integrality and a team of engineers designed a niche mobile engagement app called meap3, Mobile Engagement Application for Procurement and Purchasing Professionals. “As a woman-owned small business, I know the challenges that exist in making a connection with decision-makers and selling your capabilities to win new business. I wanted to create a product that removes the barriers and creates an instant way to engage and connect with procurement professionals,” shared Cynthia Nevels, meap3 designer and Senior Partner with Integrality, LLC.

20140417-155050.jpgThe meap3 app empowers users and enables them to register to connect with agency presenters real-time, to engage with agencies, share their capabilities, to view active RFPs and RFQs and share data with their social network. Over 300 attendees were introduced to the new mobile app with overwhelming buzz and excitement. Users can download the iOS or Android app for free via their smart phone or wireless notebook online at Premier Wireless sponsored a $250 gift card giveaway to registered users. The campaign ends April 30, 2014. Talk is Houston Independent School District is interested in integrating the new technology into their procurement outreach program. Disruptive technology and social enterprises are coming together to solve everyday business challenges – that’s innovation at its best.