Startup America: A Campaign To Celebrate, Inspire And Accelerate Entrepreneurship

Comment

Note from the editor: This is a guest post from Aneesh Chopra, United States Chief Technology Officer.

During last week’s State of the Union address, President Obama challenged the Nation to out-educate, out-innovate, and out-build our competition to win the future.

A critical ingredient in this endeavor is the creative spirit of the American entrepreneur that featured prominently in the President’s Strategy for American Innovation – a framework for long-term economic growth and sustainable job creation.

Today, President Obama celebrated the launch of Startup America, a national (public/private) campaign to celebrate, inspire, and accelerate high-growth entrepreneurship across all corners of the country, and the formation of the Startup America Partnership to catalyze private support for entrepreneurial ecosystems.

Steve Case, co-founder of AOL and Chairman of the Case Foundation, will chair the Partnership, and Carl Schramm, President and CEO of the Kauffman Foundation will be a founding board member.

This endeavor will tap into the expertise of the country’s most innovative entrepreneurs, corporations, universities, foundations, and other leaders and institutions, working in concert with a wide range of Federal agencies to dramatically increase the prevalence and success of America’s entrepreneurs.

To kick-start the campaign, the Obama Administration announced 27 public and private commitments organized across five key goals:

1. Expand access to capital for high-growth startups.

The Small Business Administration (SBA) will commit $2 billion as a match to private sector investment over the next five years in promising high-growth companies. Using existing authority, with no new cost to taxpayers, and through the operating infrastructure of the Small Business Investment Company (SBIC) program, SBA-guaranteed bonds will match private capital raised by these privately-owned and managed investment funds and will focus on growth companies in underserved communities and those in the so-called “valley of death” in the innovation lifecycle.

In March, Secretary Geithner will convene a summit on access to capital for small and entrepreneurial businesses with participation from entrepreneurs, investors, and policy makers.

Stay tuned.

2. Expand entrepreneurship education and mentorship programs.

The indefatigable Brad Feld and his TechStars colleagues will scale the mentorship-driven startup accelerator model to 15 independently owned and operated regional organizations. Over the next three years, the TechStars Network will ensure that 5,000 successful and experienced entrepreneurs and investors will mentor and support 6,000 promising young entrepreneurs, increasing their success rate tenfold and creating 25,000 new jobs by 2015.

Several organizations, public and private, will focus on boosting the number of entrepreneurs among our nation’s veterans, women, and students. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will establish two integrated business accelerators – one web-based and the other physically located in Waukesha, WI. A coalition of foundation and corporate partners will enable Astia to inspire a new generation of women entrepreneurs.

And the National Foundation for Teaching Entrepreneurship, recent guests at the White House, will scale its highly successful educational programs targeting at-risk high school students both physically (new communities and projects) and virtually (better online resources).

3. Strengthen federally-funded R&D commercialization.

The Deshpande Foundation will join with The Idea Village and Tulane University to enhance the innovation ecosystem of New Orleans. Learning from its successful programs at MIT and the recently launched “innovation sandbox” in the Merrimack Valley, where I had the pleasure of visiting, this endeavor will foster large-scale entrepreneurship, building on the skills and talents of the local community, including local business, higher education, and non-profits.

Our Nation’s research agencies are actively engaged on this topic. Building on the success of last year’s inaugural i6 Challenge, the Economic Development Administration will launch the $12M i6 Green Challenge in collaboration with research agencies focused on proof-of-concept centers that accelerate technology commercialization, regional economic development, and environmental sustainability.

4. Identify and remove unnecessary barriers to high-growth startups.

My colleague in the Office of Management and Budget, Cass Sunstein, is leading the President’s regulatory review initiative. An important component is the ability to take into consideration the impact of rule-making on small businesses and offer flexibility when appropriate.

To hear from entrepreneurs directly, the Administration will launch online suggestion tools and visit innovation centers like Silicon Valley and North Carolina’s Research Triangle Park to identify suggestions on how to streamline or eliminate the biggest barriers to startup growth. Please drop by our panel at South by Southwest in Austin, TX and stay tuned for a visit to a city near you.

The Department of Health and Human Services will scale a more targeted effort, “DC-to-VC,” to engage venture capitalists, innovators, and entrepreneurs who are increasingly focused on how to capitalize on reforms that promote health IT adoption, reform payment incentives to reward value, not volume, and liberate an unprecedented amount of health information. Renowned healthcare venture capitalist Bryan Roberts, of Venrock, recently commented on this opportunity as did a number of investors at the recent JP Morgan healthcare conference.

5. Expand collaborations between large companies and startups.

Last year, Intel launched the Invest in America Alliance to bring together companies to expand investment in American startups. This year, to advance the goals of Startup America, Intel Capital will commit $200M of new investment in U.S. companies.

IBM will invest $150 million in 2011 to fund programs that promote entrepreneurs and new business opportunities in the United States.

And fresh from his performance on Saturday Night Live, Mark Zuckerberg and his six-year old startup, Facebook, will launch Startup Days, a new series of 12 to 15 events around the country designed to provide entrepreneurs with access to expertise, resources, and engineers to help accelerate their businesses.

This is just the beginning. President Obama has challenged us with a bold vision to grow our economy through innovation and entrepreneurship. Thanks to today’s public/private collaboration, we are better organized to give every American a chance to win the future.

More TechCrunch

After Apple loosened its App Store guidelines to permit game emulators, the retro game emulator Delta — an app 10 years in the making — hit the top of the…

Adobe comes after indie game emulator Delta for copying its logo

Meta is once again taking on its competitors by developing a feature that borrows concepts from others — in this case, BeReal and Snapchat. The company is developing a feature…

Meta’s latest experiment borrows from BeReal’s and Snapchat’s core ideas

Welcome to Startups Weekly! We’ve been drowning in AI news this week, with Google’s I/O setting the pace. And Elon Musk rages against the machine.

Startups Weekly: It’s the dawning of the age of AI — plus,  Musk is raging against the machine

IndieBio’s Bay Area incubator is about to debut its 15th cohort of biotech startups. We took special note of a few, which were making some major, bordering on ludicrous, claims…

IndieBio’s SF incubator lineup is making some wild biotech promises

YouTube TV has announced that its multiview feature for watching four streams at once is now available on Android phones and tablets. The Android launch comes two months after YouTube…

YouTube TV’s ‘multiview’ feature is now available on Android phones and tablets

Featured Article

Two Santa Cruz students uncover security bug that could let millions do their laundry for free

CSC ServiceWorks provides laundry machines to thousands of residential homes and universities, but the company ignored requests to fix a security bug.

12 hours ago
Two Santa Cruz students uncover security bug that could let millions do their laundry for free

OpenAI’s Superalignment team, responsible for developing ways to govern and steer “superintelligent” AI systems, was promised 20% of the company’s compute resources, according to a person from that team. But…

OpenAI created a team to control ‘superintelligent’ AI — then let it wither, source says

TechCrunch Disrupt 2024 is just around the corner, and the buzz is palpable. But what if we told you there’s a chance for you to not just attend, but also…

Harness the TechCrunch Effect: Host a Side Event at Disrupt 2024

Decks are all about telling a compelling story and Goodcarbon does a good job on that front. But there’s important information missing too.

Pitch Deck Teardown: Goodcarbon’s $5.5M seed deck

Slack is making it difficult for its customers if they want the company to stop using its data for model training.

Slack under attack over sneaky AI training policy

A Texas-based company that provides health insurance and benefit plans disclosed a data breach affecting almost 2.5 million people, some of whom had their Social Security number stolen. WebTPA said…

Healthcare company WebTPA discloses breach affecting 2.5 million people

Featured Article

Microsoft dodges UK antitrust scrutiny over its Mistral AI stake

Microsoft won’t be facing antitrust scrutiny in the U.K. over its recent investment into French AI startup Mistral AI.

14 hours ago
Microsoft dodges UK antitrust scrutiny over its Mistral AI stake

Ember has partnered with HSBC in the U.K. so that the bank’s business customers can access Ember’s services from their online accounts.

Embedded finance is still trendy as accounting automation startup Ember partners with HSBC UK

Kudos uses AI to figure out consumer spending habits so it can then provide more personalized financial advice, like maximizing rewards and utilizing credit effectively.

Kudos lands $10M for an AI smart wallet that picks the best credit card for purchases

The EU’s warning comes after Microsoft failed to respond to a legally binding request for information that focused on its generative AI tools.

EU warns Microsoft it could be fined billions over missing GenAI risk info

The prospects for troubled banking-as-a-service startup Synapse have gone from bad to worse this week after a United States Trustee filed an emergency motion on Wednesday.  The trustee is asking…

A US Trustee wants troubled fintech Synapse to be liquidated via Chapter 7 bankruptcy, cites ‘gross mismanagement’

U.K.-based Seraphim Space is spinning up its 13th accelerator program, with nine participating companies working on a range of tech from propulsion to in-space manufacturing and space situational awareness. The…

Seraphim’s latest space accelerator welcomes nine companies

OpenAI has reached a deal with Reddit to use the social news site’s data for training AI models. In a blog post on OpenAI’s press relations site, the company said…

OpenAI inks deal to train AI on Reddit data

X users will now be able to discover posts from new Communities that are trending directly from an Explore tab within the section.

X pushes more users to Communities

For Mark Zuckerberg’s 40th birthday, his wife got him a photoshoot. Zuckerberg gives the camera a sly smile as he sits amid a carefully crafted re-creation of his childhood bedroom.…

Mark Zuckerberg’s makeover: Midlife crisis or carefully crafted rebrand?

Strava announced a slew of features, including AI to weed out leaderboard cheats, a new ‘family’ subscription plan, dark mode and more.

Strava taps AI to weed out leaderboard cheats, unveils ‘family’ plan, dark mode and more

We all fall down sometimes. Astronauts are no exception. You need to be in peak physical condition for space travel, but bulky space suits and lower gravity levels can be…

Astronauts fall over. Robotic limbs can help them back up.

Microsoft will launch its custom Cobalt 100 chips to customers as a public preview at its Build conference next week, TechCrunch has learned. In an analyst briefing ahead of Build,…

Microsoft’s custom Cobalt chips will come to Azure next week

What a wild week for transportation news! It was a smorgasbord of news that seemed to touch every sector and theme in transportation.

Tesla keeps cutting jobs and the feds probe Waymo

Sony Music Group has sent letters to more than 700 tech companies and music streaming services to warn them not to use its music to train AI without explicit permission.…

Sony Music warns tech companies over ‘unauthorized’ use of its content to train AI

Winston Chi, Butter’s founder and CEO, told TechCrunch that “most parties, including our investors and us, are making money” from the exit.

GrubMarket buys Butter to give its food distribution tech an AI boost

The investor lawsuit is related to Bolt securing a $30 million personal loan to Ryan Breslow, which was later defaulted on.

Bolt founder Ryan Breslow wants to settle an investor lawsuit by returning $37 million worth of shares

Meta, the parent company of Facebook, launched an enterprise version of the prominent social network in 2015. It always seemed like a stretch for a company built on a consumer…

With the end of Workplace, it’s fair to wonder if Meta was ever serious about the enterprise

X, formerly Twitter, turned TweetDeck into X Pro and pushed it behind a paywall. But there is a new column-based social media tool in town, and it’s from Instagram Threads.…

Meta Threads is testing pinned columns on the web, similar to the old TweetDeck

As part of 2024’s Accessibility Awareness Day, Google is showing off some updates to Android that should be useful to folks with mobility or vision impairments. Project Gameface allows gamers…

Google expands hands-free and eyes-free interfaces on Android