Business reporter Zach Kyle proposed this month’s cover story on seven tech startups worth watching. He took advantage of this edition’s technology theme to tell stories of some businesses that had received little or no Statesman coverage.
We sought companies using technology in diverse sectors and areas of Idaho, not just Boise software companies, important as those are.
The Challenge Cup made the choices easier. Kyle covered Boise’s Challenge Cup competition in January. The annual competition is run by 1776, an incubator and venture fund in Washington, D.C., though this was its first appearance in Boise. Twenty founders from around the state crowded into Trailhead, the new Downtown work, collaboration and mentoring center for entrepreneurs. They vied for a chance to advance to a national competition Feb. 4 in San Francisco and, ultimately, a worldwide one.
Five of the startups in Kyle’s story competed at Trailhead. Three — GenZ Technologies, Advanced Ceramic Fibers and PsiFlow — were the ones judges chose to advance to the nationals. At nationals, judges chose GenZ to advance to the global competition this summer in Washington, D.C.
Kyle learned about LandproData from Boise State University’s Technology and Entrepreneurial Center, or TECenter, the business incubator (oops, sorry, the current term is accelerator) in Nampa. He learned about SaasFocus from Meridian’s New Ventures Lab, a new incubator (make that “hybrid co-working space”).
It was fun for Kyle and me to work on this story. I think you will enjoy it, too. I know you will come away knowing more about Idaho tech.