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Grand Rapids

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About

ABOUT STARTUP GRIND

Startup Grind is the largest independent startup community, actively educating, inspiring, and connecting more than 3,500,000 entrepreneurs in over 600 chapters. We nurture startup ecosystems in 125+ countries through events, media, and partnerships with organizations like Amazon Web Services.

The cornerstone of our global community are monthly events featuring successful local founders, innovators, educators and investors who share lessons learned on the road to building great companies. 

Founded in Silicon Valley, Startup Grind has helped millions of entrepreneurs build their businesses, connect with strategic partners, and secure funding.

OUR MISSION

To educate, inspire & connect area entrepreneurs.

OUR VALUES

Help others before we help ourselves, give before we take, make friends not contacts.

ABOUT OUR CHAPTER

Founded in December 2019, the West Michigan / Grand Rapids chapter of Startup Grind acts as the connective tissue between all the great resources in our community. 

As such, we are here for those who are trying to navigate the landscape of great resources available. 

We also serve to contribute to the conversation as we all work to grow our entrepreneur and startup ecosystem.

ABOUT OUR ECOSYSTEM

There are some incredible people, public and private organizations, and nonprofits working very hard to ensure the entrepreneurial and startup ecosystem in the Great Lakes is well supported.

Whether you're in the ideation stage, fundraising, looking for talent, or whatever stage of your endeavor, there's some incredible support available.

Need help navigating? Reach out!

ABOUT OUR REGION

The Great Lakes region is no longer the best-kept-secret in tech. 

Encompassing great talent and capital hubs around the Great Lakes, we've got powerful tech cities like Chicago, Cleveland, Columbus, St. Louis, Detroit, Buffalo, Traverse City, Ann Arbor, Waterloo, Toronto, among others.

According to the 2020 Michigan Venture Capital Association Report:

OUR TALKS

We highlight local CEOs, Founders, ecosystem builders, thought leaders for Fireside Chats. We also host workshops from expert practitioners around branding, scaling, leadership, pitching, mindset... and also on to develop skills you can use IN the business.

Here's a list of some of our greatest events featuring those from our Michigan ecosystem:

HUNTING FOR SILVER LININGS

Through our event series Hunting for Silver Linings, we check in with ecosystem builders, Startup Grind Chapter Directors, investors, and business leaders from around the world.

Our goal here is to provide deeper context around challenges and opportunities found in markets around the world, as well as mine the insight that can better inform our biases about regions, their talent, and potential for investment.

Since April 2020, we've been able to make meaningful connections between investors, companies, founders, and ecosystem support organizations.

ABOUT THE HOSTS

Y G Katsanos
Beneventure Partners, LLC

A former investment banker, Yorgo (George) has experience in advising companies, financial institutions, institutional investors, and governments on innovation, change management, and growth.

Corey Hart
Startup Grind

As an incremental CxO and advisor, Corey helps firms and entrepreneurs move from ideation to market, and market to scale.

WANT TO PARTICIPATE?

If you're a Startup Grind Chapter Director or ecosystem support organization interested in speaking, click here to schedule.

If you're an investor, family office, fund, VC, etc. interested in speaking, click here to schedule.

Some of our favorites so far include check-ins with:

The complete list of events is found below, and they're all incredibly insightful in uncovering great detail into what it's like on the ground and an intro to how to build network and leverage opportunity in each.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Want to speak?

Want to host, partner with or sponsor one or more of our events?

Want to help coordinate our events?

Reach out to the Chapter Director, Corey Hart at corey@startupgrind.com.

Upcoming Events

Past Events

The Dark Side of Crushing It w/ 3x Founder & CEO Ryan Vaughn

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Art Markman, Professor, Author & Director of IC2 Institute

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Professor Joel Westra of Calvin University

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ David Butler of Startup Grind Zurich, Switzerland

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Salvatore Rosania of Startup Grind Pisa-Lucca, Italy

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Adrian Smith of Startup Grind Winston Salem, North Carolina

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Clark Rubino of Startup Grind Chongqing, China

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Fernando Zeledon of Faster Capital/International Business Accelerator

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Gianluca Cecchi of Startup Grind Florence, Italy

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Thomson Dawson of White Hot Center

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Alex Rodriguez Bacardit of Startup Grind Barcelona, Spain

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Solange Rodriguez Soifer of Startup Grind Buenos Aires, Argentina

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Abeer Khalid Hayat of Startup Grind Sialkot, Pakistan

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Uwem Uwemakpan of Startup Grind Lagos

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Ross Mason, Founder of HINRI

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Sedem Balfour of Startup Grind Kumasi, Ghana.

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Hessan Adnani of Startup Grind Nicosia, Cyprus

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Declan McLaughlin of Startup Grind Edinburgh, Scotland

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Tony Rothacker of Startup Grind Coffs Harbour, Australia

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Siyabonga Tiwana of Startup Grind Johannesburg, South Africa

Customer Growth & Engagement, a Startup's Guide

Using the Color Green to Move the Dial on DE&I w/ Jim Roberts of Jim Roberts Enterprises, LLC

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Dr. Charles Ume of Startup Nigeria

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Jose Betancur of Startup Grind Medellín, Columbia

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Bharat Agarwalof Startup New Delhi NCR

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ David Stengle of Startup Grind Princeton, New Jersey

12/2/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Alejandro Laplana Zabarain, CEO Shokworks Inc

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Gultan Asgarli of Startup SGx Tartu, Estonia

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Shourav Islam of Startup Grind Dhaka, Bangladesh

Leading Change Through Wellness w/ Gaurav Goomer of MyLifeWell.com

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Siyabonga Tiwana of Startup Grind Johannesburg, South Africa

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Mayank Goyal of Startup Grind Jaipur, Rajasthan, India

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Vitor Bruno of Startup Grind Florianópolis, Brazil

Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Martin Canabal of Startup Grind Punta Del Este, Uruguay

Comedian, Entrepreneur & Writer - A fireside chat with Natasha Pearl Hansen

The Startup Community Way: Evolving an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem with Brad Feld

We're hosting a conversation with Nir Eyal, bestselling author of Hooked and Indistractable

10/16/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Gultan Asgarli of Startup Grind Estonia

Black Leaders Month: Funders, Founders, and Innovators

10/16/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Geoffrey Fouvry of Startup Grind Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

10/12/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ David Stengle of Startup Grind Princeton, NJ

10/07/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Ken Ratri Iswari of Startup Grind Bandung, Indonesia

9/25/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Haykuhi Hovhannisyan of Startup Grind Gyumri, Armenia

How to Get Sh*t Done | A Conversation with Author & Co-Founder of Radical Candor Kim Scott

9/23/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ TJ Kinion of Startup Grind Orange County, California

9/21/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ James Guenther of Startup Grind Greater New Orleans Area

9/18/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Aditi Chaurasia of Startup Grind Indore, India.

Creating a Pitch that Gets Results with Barbara Boldt

9/16/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Roshanay Asif Sheikh of Startup Grind Sialkot, Pakistan

9/11/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Farouq Hassan of Startup Cairo, Egypt.

9/8/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Gabriella Marcelja of Startup Grind Rijeka, Croatia.

M/W/F Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Daifallah Alluhaidan of Startup Grind Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

9/4/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Alex Kolomiets of Startup Grind Moscow, Russia.

The Startup Community Way with Brad Feld (Foundry Group)

M/W/F Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Roop Bhadury of Startup Grind Brisbane, Australia.

Startup Grind Pitch Battle Grand Rapids Lansing Michigan Champion Showcase

M/W/F Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Udoka Otubelu of Startup Grind Enugu, Nigeria.

8/24/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Adam Robinson of Startup Grind Louisville, Kentucky

M/W/F Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Charles Umeh of Startup Grind Anambra, Nigeria.

8/19/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Becky Haney of Calvin University

M/W/F Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Barath Venkatesan of Startup Gind Tiruchengode.

M/W/F Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Vitor Bruno of Startup Grind Brazil.

8/12/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Ahmed Maawy of Startup Grind Mombasa, Kenya.

8/10/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Jason Kraus of Startup Grind Boston, MA.

8/7/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Jessica Casey Jaya of Startup Grind Jakarta.

M/W/F Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Andrea Varriale of Startup Grind Malta.

8/3/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Curtis Bergh of Startup Grind Singapore.

7/31/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Chris Haug of Startup Grind Columbia, Maryland.

7/29/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Pablo Lascurain of Startup Grind Monterrey, Mexico.

7/27/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Paul Mbua of Startup Grind Limbe, Cameroon.

7/24/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Jose Carlos Santos of Startup Grind Luanda, Angola

7/22/20 Global Financial Market Update w/ Behavioural Economist George Katsanos

7/20/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Alex Gorsuch of Startup Grind Urbana-Champaign, IL

M/W/F Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Farouq Hassan of Startup Grind Cairo, Egypt

7/15/20 Global Financial Market Update w/ Behavioural Economist George Katsanos

7/13/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Zaur Unsizadel of Startup Grind Azerbaijan

7/10/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Therese W. Gamble of Startup Grind Jacksonville, Florida

7/8/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Ekaterina Erina of Startup Grind St. Petersburg, Russia

7/6/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Stela Suils Cuesta of Startup Grind Lisbon, Portugal

7/3/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Gianluca Abbruzzese of Startup Grind Caserta, Italy

7/1/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Mauricio Duque of Startup Grind Barranquilla, Colombia

6/29/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Georgi Tonchev of Startup Grind Plovdiv, Bulgaria

6/26/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Vik Kasturi of Startup Grind Atlanta, Georgia

#SGWomen Month: From Idea to Exit: Innovating, Fundraising & Pivoting During Crisis

6/24/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Sam Adekunle of Startup Grind Ife, Nigeria

M/W/F Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Asif Iqbal of Startup Grind Dhaka, Bangladesh

6/19/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Mo Salah of Startup Grind Amman, JO

5/17/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Prosper Ocloo of Startup Grind Ghana (KNUST)

6/12/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Corey Hart of Startup Grind Grand Rapids, MI

6/12/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Zain ul Hassan of Startup Grind Wah Cantt, PK

6/10/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Rafat Abushaban of Startup Grind Gaza, Palestine

#SGWomen Month: Female Leadership & Entrepreneurship in Michigan Moderated by Terry Barclay

5/8/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Celestine Ukpere of Startup Grind Kajaido, Kenya

6/5/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Gabi Chaves of Startup Grind Joao Pessoa, BR

6/3/20 Hunting for Silver Linings w/ Kasra Khalili of Startup Grind Baton Rouge

6/1/20 #REALTALK Office Hours & #AMA: Hunting for the Silver Lining w/ Salvatore Rosania (Pisa-Lucca)

5/29/20 #REALTALK Office Hours & #AMA: Hunting for the Silver Lining w/ Luca Albertinazzi (Santiago)

5/27/20 #REALTALK Office Hours & #AMA: Hunting for the Silver Lining w/ Modou A. Njie (Banjul, Gambia)

5/25/20 #REALTALK Office Hours & #AMA: Hunting for the Silver Lining w/ Henry Soo (Vancouver, BC)

5/22/20 #REALTALK Office Hours & #AMA: Hunting for the Silver Lining w/ Arzish Azam (Islamabad)

5/20/20 #REALTALK Office Hours & #AMA: Hunting for the Silver Lining w/ Declan McLaughlin (Edinburgh)

5/18/20 #REALTALK OFFICE HOURS W/ EXPERTS IN TURNAROUND & CRISIS MANAGEMENT

5/15/20 #REALTALK OFFICE HOURS W/ EXPERTS IN TURNAROUND & CRISIS MANAGEMENT

5/13/20 #REALTALK OFFICE HOURS W/ EXPERTS IN TURNAROUND & CRISIS MANAGEMENT

TECH + TALENT + EQUITY & CREATING THE BEST NEXT NORMAL

5/11/20 #REALTALK OFFICE HOURS W/ EXPERTS IN TURNAROUND & CRISIS MANAGEMENT

5/8/20 #REALTALK OFFICE HOURS W/ EXPERTS IN TURNAROUND & CRISIS MANAGEMENT

5/6/20 #REALTALK OFFICE HOURS W/ EXPERTS IN TURNAROUND & CRISIS MANAGEMENT

5/4/20 #REALTALK OFFICE HOURS W/ EXPERTS IN TURNAROUND & CRISIS MANAGEMENT

5/1/20 #REALTALK OFFICE HOURS W/ EXPERTS IN TURNAROUND & CRISIS MANAGEMENT

4/29/20 #REALTALK OFFICE HOURS W/ EXPERTS IN TURNAROUND & CRISIS MANAGEMENT

4/27/20 #REALTALK OFFICE HOURS W/ EXPERTS IN TURNAROUND & CRISIS MANAGEMENT

Presented with AWS, Communicating in the Upside Down: An Epic Ask Me Anything w/ Eric Hultgren

Overcoming Adversity with Creativity & Grit w/ Erika Plunkett (Ama International)

Workshop: How to Create Your Value Proposition for Unparalleled Competitive Advantage

Scaling Teams with a Culture-First Mindset - Chip LaFleur (LaFleur Marketing)

Creating a Business with Authenticity, Resiliency & Integrity - Cara Fedewa Debbaudt (BloomBright)

Organizers

  • Corey Hart

    Corey Hart

    Startup Grind

    Chapter Director

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  • jaylin golson

    jaylin golson

    STARTUP GRIND

    Development Director

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  • Stephanie Gonda

    Stephanie Gonda

    Start Up Grind Grand Rapids

    Chief of Staff

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  • Jessica Piszker

    Jessica Piszker

    STARTUP GRIND GRAND RAPIDS

    Social Media & Events Manager

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  • Nikki Meeuwenberg

    Nikki Meeuwenberg

    Events Manager

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  • Maya Heibel

    Maya Heibel

    Startup & Venture Capital Intern

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  • Kaitlyn Nixon

    Kaitlyn Nixon

    Membership & Development Intern

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  • Kenzie Stephens

    Kenzie Stephens

    Marketing & Development Intern

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  • Chapter Photos