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'State of Columbus Startups' event celebrates growth in tech ecosystem

'State of Columbus Startups' event celebrates growth in tech ecosystem

On October 12th, our Purpose Jobs crew teamed up with OhioX, One Columbus, Drive Capital, TechLife Columbus, Pride Fund 1 and Ohio Impact Fund to virtually host the State of the Columbus Startup Community. And it was an incredible afternoon! 

Top leaders from throughout the Columbus startup ecosystem came together to discuss the growth of the community, why tech workers are choosing Columbus, and where we go from here. 

"It's the beginning of the wave," Mark Kvamme, co-founder of Drive Capital, said of the startup ecosystem during the Columbus Tech session. 

Three virtual panels on what it's like to live, work and tech in Columbus highlighted the amazing growth this startup community has seen over the last ten years. Catherine Allshouse highlighted some of that growth in her keynote, calling out major funding rounds from startups like Olive and Beam, and the historic IPO of Root Insurance. And the Life in Columbus session featured folks who have grown up here and chosen to stay, or left and chosen to come back for the amazing living opportunities the city has to offer. 

“You can build that quality of life you want, and the cost of living keeps it all within reach,” Jariatu Mansaray, Co-Founder & Executive Director of Black Tech Columbus.

In the tech session, top Columbus VC leaders came together to discuss the growth of the startup community and what needs to be done to keep that momentum going. 

Mark Kvamme, co-founder of Drive Capital and JobsOhio, led a great discussion with Densil Porteous, CEO of Pride Fund 1; Jenny Lane, CEO of Ohio Impact Fund; and Kristy Campbell, COO of Rev1 Ventures. Each panelist brought their unique VC niche (from traditional VC funding to startup studio to impact funding) to the conversation. 

“What makes me believe this city is doing it right is the collaboration," said Jenny Lane, CEO of the Ohio Impact Fund. 

And if you're looking to be a part of the growing startup scene and applying for startup jobs in Columbus, be sure to check out the recap of the Behind the Scenes session. Elio Harmon went behind the scenes with hiring leaders at Root, Veeva Systems, Finite State and Lower. They talked about culture, hiring, remote work and more.

Following that session was a virtual career fair. If you missed it, no worries! You can still apply for startup jobs at the attending companies


Watch the Recording of the State of the Columbus Startup Community

If you missed the event, we got your back. You can check out the full recording of the event here 👇



2 PM (EST): Welcome

OhioX president, Chris Berry, kicked off the afternoon of panel discussions.


2:05 PM (EST): Keynote

Global CIO and Head of Cloud Operations at Veeva Systems, Catherine Allshouse, delivered the keynote address. Catherine works from Columbus and serves as the site leader for Veeva's fast-growing Columbus hub office.


2:20 PM (EST): Life in Columbus

Columbus is exploding as a startup city. Why? One reason is that it's a great place to live. We're diving into the best neighborhoods, hangout spots, places to eat and more. Speakers include:


2:50 PM (EST): Columbus Tech

We're diving into what's making the Columbus startup scene take off. VC funding, entrepreneurial communities, industry strengths, why companies are choosing to Columbus as the city for their second HQs... Hear about all of this from top Columbus startup leaders:


3:30 PM (EST): Behind the Scenes at Top Columbus Companies

What's it like to work at a top startup in Columbus? Hear directly from leaders at Root, Veeva Systems, Finite State and Lower about what it's like to work there. Ask questions and get an exclusive look. This session was moderated by Elio Harmon, founder of 614Startups.


4 - 5 PM (EST): Columbus Startup and Tech Virtual Career Fair

Chat directly with hiring managers and apply for hundreds of jobs at the virtual career fair. See which companies attended and are hiring


Learn More About Our Partners

This event would not be possible without the help of our wonderful partners. Learn more about the incredible work they are doing to support the Columbus tech community, bring people together and help make opportunities more accessible. 


Additional Thanks To...

Ben Blanquera at TechLife Columbus. T. Wolf Starr at Pride Fund. David White and Matt McQuade at One Columbus, and Lindy Hall at JobsOhio. Elio Harmon at 614Startups. Ashley Baig at Rev1 Ventures. Nils Root at Drive Capital. Thank you for making connections, contributing your thoughts and your time, and for being passionate about growing the community. 

Also big thanks to Abby Filer at FMX, Alex Rouse at Upstart, and Courtney Lintner at TechLife Columbus for being a part of the pre-recorded videos shown at the event. 



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