Aerospace Day at the Capitol

Colorado is a clear leader within the aerospace industry. This week aerospace leaders and enthusiasts came together for Aerospace Day at the Capitol to connect and collaborate through a full day of networking and dialogue with Colorado Legislators. Among many fascinating discussions, experts from many perspectives shared how Colorado became one of the largest space economies per capita and how they can effectively partner to continue to support aerospace in our state.

The event was made possible through Colorado Space Business Roundtable (CSBR), the Colorado Space Coalition (CSC), Citizens for Space Exploration (CSE), and the Aerospace States' Association (ASA), and our numerous aerospace partner organizations: 

University of Colorado BoulderSierra Nevada CorporationThe Boeing CompanyColorado Office of Economic Development and International TradeBall AerospaceTeledyne Brown Engineering Inc, and Lockheed Martin
 

COBRT and ICOSA Media, through the sponsorship of CAP Logistics, were pleased to join everyone at Aerospace Day at the Capitol. Please enjoy the gallery of photos below and stay tuned for an upcoming showcase video.

 

The Next Generation of B2B: How the Millennial Buyer is Changing B2B Sales & Marketing with Adam Vasquez, CEO of Sacunas

Please join Colorado Business Roundtable and Vistage as they welcome Sacunas CEO Adam Vasquez for his presentation, "The Next Generation of B2B: How the Millennial Buyer is Changing B2B Sales & Marketing." REGISTER HERE

Thursday, March 30, 2017
4:00 PM – 6:00 PM MDT
ICOSA Event Center
4100 Jackson Street
Denver, CO 80216

Millennials are igniting a transformation in B2B sales & marketing and becoming key purchase decision makers. In this session, we’ll share results of our study of 2,000 millennial B2B buyers and learn what drives their B2B path to purchase behaviors.

From Facebook to Glassdoor, we’ll discuss the channels and content types that matter to millennials, learning why this group is digital by default, socially savvy, and engaged with cause marketing. As this data impacts the evolution of B2B, we’ll give insights on transforming your business to attract and retain millennial buyers.

Three Keys To Success:

·        Digital is the most important sales and marketing channel for B2B millennial buyers

·        Content marketing needs to focus on helping millennials learn about your products and services in video format

·        Brands need to evolve to have meaning, beyond the products that they create

REGISTER HERE

Meet Adam Vasquez, President & CEO of Sacunas

As President and CEO, Adam‘s vision is to make Sacunas the leading business-to-business agency in the world.

With more than 18 years of leadership, management and marketing experience, Adam supports agency clients with extensive knowledge in the automotive, transportation, manufacturing, and technology sectors across North America, Europe and Asia.

He has supported programs for a number of agency clients, including TE Connectivity, Solera Holdings, Philips, PennDOT, Baker International, and Gannett Fleming Engineers to name a few. As a consultant he has worked with General Motors, Ford, Avaya, Bank of America, the US Department of Transportation, US Department of Homeland Security, Department of Defense, State of California, and the State of Michigan.

Prior to joining the agency, Adam was the Chief Marketing Officer for Solera (NYSE: SLH) based in Dallas, Texas.

Adam holds a bachelor’s degree from Randolph-Macon College, and master’s degrees in e-commerce and business administration from University of Maryland.

An Eye on the Future: Autonomous Mobility

By Stephen Stribling

The century-old automotive business model is facing an unprecedented technological disruption. As the auto industry continues to embrace autonomous, shared and electric mobility, it is fast becoming the face of innovation – and investors are taking notice.

On average, current vehicles are in use for about an hour each day, yet account for almost half of the world’s oil demand and approximately 3,500 deaths worldwide.  With statistics such as these, it is no wonder that companies are creating new ways to improve consumer experience, sustainability and public safety.

It’s important to remember that investing in the autonomous auto industry comes with risks and those interested should conduct lengthy research and possess a great deal of patience before making any decisions.

But for those with higher risk tolerances, consider opportunities beyond just those at the forefront of the movement (major auto manufacturers, mobile taxi services, new electric car manufacturers). Consider those who manufactures the components necessary to the innovation. Look below the surface to the suppliers such as the chip companies, sensor companies, optical companies, satellite companies, and ceramic material companies, just to name a few.

Here are some other growth areas to keep an eye on:

·       Chemicals: If the demand for electric vehicles increases, an increased supply of battery-grade lithium will be needed. Lithium producers could benefit significantly from higher consumer adoption of electric vehicles.

·       Electric Utilities: Electric energy will be in high demand as we shift from pump to plug-in charging. A transition to electric vehicles could be equal to one-third of total U.S. energy demand.

·       Telecommunication Systems: An essential component of the autonomous ecosystem, telecom technology will be relied heavily upon to connect vehicles to each other and to infrastructure.

I fully believe that autonomous vehicles will be a common site in the near future. Seeing how modes of transportation has transformed over centuries from horses to vehicles to trains to planes, autonomous vehicles seems to be the next natural frontier. There are many possible improvements that could open the doors for new investment opportunities.

The speed and extent of the move toward autonomous driving ultimately remains uncertain as it’ll remain largely dependent on external forces such as regulatory developments, the rate of consumer adoption and the competitive environment.

However, while many of the benefits may take time to fully play out, it’s always worth keeping one eye on the future.

Stephen Stribling is a Financial Advisor with the Global Wealth Management Division of Morgan Stanley in Denver. He can be reached at 303-572-4889 or stephen.l.stribling@ms.com.

The information contained in this article is not a solicitation to purchase or sell investments. Any information presented is general in nature and not intended to provide individually tailored investment advice. The strategies and/or investments referenced may not be suitable for all investors as the appropriateness of a particular investment or strategy will depend on an investor's individual circumstances and objectives.  Investing involves risks and there is always the potential of losing money when you invest. The views expressed herein are those of the author and may not necessarily reflect the views of Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, or its affiliates. Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, LLC, member SIPC.

Secretary Williams Launches Ideation Platform for Turning Public Data into Business Insights

Secretary of State Wayne Williams announced on January 18, 2017 the launch of a platform to gather ideas for how public data can deliver business insights. 

"We believe public data is an asset and that it ought to be more easily accessible and usable for the people of Colorado, especially business decision-makers," said Secretary Williams. 

“But we need your help. We’re looking for your ideas on how public data can create business insights. That includes everyone from the owner of a small business to a manager or CEO of a large corporation. How can public data help you?”

The platform, which can be found online at https://ideabuzz.com/a/buzz/gocodecolorado/gocodecolorado, is a tool for brainstorming. Submitters can pose a question or offer a problem they face in their business. Others can vote in support of or comment to further develop or enhance a submission. 

Example:
Submitter 1: “We’re looking to open a new office and want to be located close to our prospective employees. What kind of public data is available to provide insights about various communities to choose from and who is living there?”

Submitter 2: “I have this same challenge as an employer. In addition to the demographics of a community, I’d like to know about employment rates so I understand how easy, or difficult, it will be to find employees. And if I knew something about the education or background of those potential employees, that would be fantastic!”

The Secretary of State’s office has run the Business Intelligence Center program since 2013. The program seeks to promote a healthy business environment statewide by making business-relevant data accessible and partnering with the private sector to drive innovation through the use of public data to solve business challenges.  

The program pursues this mission in two key ways. First, it assists state agencies in publishing public data to the state’s open data platform, the Colorado Information Marketplace (data.colorado.gov). Second, it runs the Go Code Colorado app challenge, where teams of software developers and entrepreneurs use public data to address business problems.

The fourth Go Code Colorado challenge kicks off this year on Feb. 1. More information about Go Code Colorado is online at gocode.colorado.gov. 

 

Colorado Space Round Up Wrap-Up

Colorado Business Roundtable (COBRT) was delighted to join an impressive list of co-sponsors for the 13th Annual CSBR Space Round Up, held on Wednesday, December 7, 2016 at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. 

COBRT sponsored a table, and ICOSA Media was the Media Sponsor. Major sponsors included Boeing, Boulder-headquartered Business Roundtable member Ball Aerospace, and Littleton-headquartered Oakman Aerospace, Inc., as well as companies with offices in Colorado like Business Roundtable member Lockheed Martin, Sierra Nevada Corporation and Northrop Grumman. The day-long event is among the most highly-anticipated among the Colorado aerospace community, and it attracts many companies and attendees from out-of-state as well.

This year's keynote speaker was Dr. Robert Braun, officially taking the reigns in January 2017 as Dean, College of Engineering and Applied Sciences, University of Colorado, Boulder. Braun comes to Colorado from previous roles at Georgia Institute of Technology and NASA. Braun is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, vice chair of the National Academies Space Studies Board, an American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics fellow and editor-in-chief of the organization's publication. He is the author or co-author of more than 300 technical publications. 

This year's event namesake panel, "The Future is in Focus: Earth, Moon, Mars & Stars," featured thrilling predictions about how technologies being developed in Colorado will put us within the grasp of the future imagined in the 1950's and 1960's.  It was moderated by Alires Almon, Orchestrator of Engagement, 100 Year Starship.

Panelists included:
Chris Crumley, VP, Civil and Commercial Space
Teledyne Brown Engineering

Tory Bruno, CEO, CisLunar Program
United Launch Alliance

Robert Chambers, Program Manager, MARS Basecamp
Lockheed Martin

Allison Barton, Program Manager, James Webb Space Telescope
Ball Aerospace

All of the panels included speakers at the height of their fields on a range of issues important to aerospace technology and workforce. Other panels included: Education: Watering the STEM; CSBR Report Card and Small Business Spotlight; Congressional Outlook: Change Has Come; and Colorado’s Role in International Space Policy. There was plenty of time for networking and exploring informational tables for education and partnership. 

See below for photos from ICOSA Media.

 

 

GOES-R Satellite Set for Saturday Launch

The world's most-technologically advanced satellite, the GOES-R, is scheduled to launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on Saturday, but it has many ties to Colorado. GOES-R is a joint project of NASA and NOAA, which many in the metro area recognize from the NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory in Boulder. The satellite was designed and built by Lockheed Martin, assembled in its Littleton facility. Centennial-headquartered United Launch Alliance has launched all the GOES satellites, and this one will be on an Atlas V rocket.

Colorado Business Roundtable is honored to be among these and other top company and government representatives attending this historic occasion. Witness launch preparations now and the event live (3:42 PM MST) at NASA TV, and stay tuned in the next couple weeks for more launch coverage from COBRT. 

There are many resources available online at GOES-R.gov including launch preparations, equipment specifications, mission objectives, multimedia resources and more. Here are some of our other recent favorites:

Or dial the ULA launch hotline at 1-877-852-4321

Tech Community Gathers at Colorado Tech Summit to Boost State’s Momentum

Gov. Hickenlooper, top experts lead a day of insight, innovation and collaboration

The Colorado tech community gathers today, October 19th, at the Denver Marriott Tech Center for the annual Colorado Tech Summit produced by Colorado Technology Association (CTA). Participants will be fully immersed in tech, learn about emerging trends that will shape the future and engage in thought-provoking discussions.

Top tech leaders from across Colorado’s tech community will share their expertise and insights on topics such as Virtual and Augmented Reality, Internet of Things, Smart and Safe Cities, and Prescriptive Analytics. The agenda will include a special address from Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper regarding the state’s central role in national cybersecurity. Undoubtedly, tech is transforming and strengthening the Colorado economy, and continual collaboration across our community is key to maintaining the atmosphere.

“We want to connect our state and accelerate the tech industry’s progress here,” said Andrea Young, CEO, Colorado Technology Association. “The Tech Summit provides an access point for individuals and companies to come together and create a dialogue of growth and vitality through technology into 2017 and beyond.”

CTA plans to announce new member programs, launching in 2017, designed to advance Colorado’s tech industry by strengthening the intersection between emerging and enterprise companies. This includes a first-of-its-kind tech association partnership with POPin - a real-time crowd-solving platform - that will help emerging companies leverage insights from seasoned enterprise executives and proven entrepreneurs to bring new products to market.

New to this year’s Summit, a Youth Innovation Showcase will highlight the work by teams of high school students through live demonstrations, including drones and robotics, of their STEM-focused projects. They carry forward our momentum as the tech workforce of the future.

The voices represented at Tech Summit are from across Colorado, including Page Tucker, CEO at ProStar Geocorp in Grand Junction and Ed Rios, the newly announced CEO for the National Cybersecurity Center in Colorado Springs. Other notable speakers and panelists include:

  • Eric Marcoullier, Partner, Cloudspace
  • Suma Nallapati, Secretary of Technology & CIO, Governor’s Office of Information Technology – State of Colorado
  • Deborah Blyth, CISO, Governor’s Office of Information Technology – State of Colorado
  • Dave Mahon, Chief Security Officer, CenturyLink
  • Jim Deters, Founder & CEO, Galvanize
  • David Gold, Managing Director, Access Venture Partners
  • Tomer Alpert, CEO, Felt
  • Avishkar Misra, Chief Data Scientist, Oracle
  • Bijal Shah, Vice President of Analytics and Data Products, Ibotta
  • Paul Lehman, CIO, Optiv
  • Anna Ewing, COO, Colorado Office of Economic Development & International Trade
  • Hayes Drumwright, Author and CEO, POP Inc.
  • Dianne Kingsland, Executive Director, STEMsCO
  • Mike Freeman, CEO, Innosphere

Learn more about Colorado Tech Summit at coloradotechsummit.org.

About Colorado Technology Association
Colorado Technology Association (CTA) represents Colorado’s technology industry, one of the fastest growing sectors in the state. Colorado ranked second for its high-tech business concentration and the nine-county metro region ranked tenth out of the 50 largest metro areas in software employment concentration. CTA works locally and nationally to ensure Colorado’s technology voice is heard and is a member of TECNA, a coalition of technology associations across the United States and Canada, as well as with CompTIA, a national lobbying organization for federal issues. Since 1994, Colorado Technology Association has been involved in legislative issues and public policy to represent the technology industry in Colorado. The Association provides more than 50 programs, events and connections to support the industry. For more information on Colorado Technology Association please call (303) 592-4070 or visit coloradotechnology.org.

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Media Contacts  
Fred Bauters, Communications Manager
440-821-6783fred@coloradotechnology.org

Amy Regnier, Director of Marketing & Events
904-333-0432amy@coloradotechnology.org

TekDry’s Shark Tank Appearance Results In More Than Just a Deal

 

Brand Awareness and Consumer Education Essential

DENVER (October 12, 2016) – Entrepreneurs Adam Cookson and Craig Beinecke, co-founders of TekDry, a Denver-based venture that provides a solution for wet phones, successfully pitched their technology on ABC’s Shark Tank last week, walking away with a $500K deal with Mr. Wonderful.

Their appearance on the hit reality show also resulted in educating consumers that options exist for wet devices and in increasing the brand’s visibility, another important goal for new companies.  

Shark Tank results by the numbers.*

·       Shark Tank national audience, 7 million

·       Number of national media stories leading up to show airing 359

·       Advertising Value Equivalency (AVE)** $1.58 million

·       Potential audience reach from media coverage 288.6 million.

·       Increase in website traffic by 3,367 percent

·       Increase in social media mentions during show airing 1,778 percent

TekDry’s services are available through a nationwide mail-in service and in select Staples stores, with plans to expand into more markets across the country.

TekDry’s patented technology uses a combination of negative-pressure, controlled heat, and proprietary beads to create a safe environment to remove 100 percent of the moisture from wet devices.

TEKDRY SPECIFICS:

·       The TekDry machine uses a safe, low temperature so there will be no overheating, and the device stays within factory recommended temperatures.

·       Make sure your phone is NOT plugged in after it has become water logged and get it to a TekDry service location as soon as possible.

·       The water removal process causes no cosmetic damage to the device.

·       The phone or device does NOT need to be taken apart to be saved.

·       In as little as 30 minutes, TekDry removes 100 percent of liquid from a wet phone or device.

·       If the device isn’t saved, customers PAY NOTHING.

·       TekDry is the fastest and safest wet phone recovery technology available.

* The numbers are provided by independent sources TVEyes, Meltwater, and Nuvi news and social monitoring services.

**Advertising Value Equivalency (AVE) is a tool used to help assign a dollar value to media coverage. The metric is achieved by determining the equivalent cost to purchase advertising and using a 2.37 multiplier to assign “in program editorial content” more value than advertising content.

ABOUT TEKDRY:
TekDry, founded in 2013 in Denver, CO, is the fastest and safest wet phone recovery technology available. Its patented solution restores water-damaged phones and devices in just 30 minutes with all contacts and data restored. TekDry’s patented technology uses a combination of low-pressure, controlled heat and proprietary beads to create a safe environment to remove 100% of the moisture from wet devices. In as little as 30 minutes – and without a single grain of rice – the TekDry process will dry out any phone or device and return it with all data, contact, photos, apps, restored safely, conveniently, and affordably. http://www.tekdry.com

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CONTACT:
Lisa Metzger (720) 771-4238

lisametzger@avocetcommunications.com

Lori Jones
lori@avocetcommunications.com

 

 

Week Two of National Cyber Security Awareness Month

October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month, an annual campaign to raise awareness about cybersecurity. In partnership with DHS, the National Cyber Security Alliance has released information on “Cyber from the Break Room to the Board Room” describing how users can protect their businesses and other organizations from cyber threats. Recommendations include avoiding phishing emails, making passwords more complex, and reporting all suspicious activity.

Users and administrators are encouraged to review the Federal Trade Commission publication Start With Security: A Guide for Business and the US-CERT Tip Avoiding Social Engineering and Phishing Attacks for additional information.

Originally posted here at US-CERT, United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team

The Peak Solution: Promoting Customer Service, Reducing Workloads and Providing Cost Effective Management

By Derek D’Andre & Rhonda Paxson

The Colorado Benefits Management System (CBMS) is the eligibility determination system for the state of Colorado. CBMS incorporates eligibility determination for Medicaid, food assistance, cash assistance, and the children’s basic health plan, including case management functions such as work programs. Currently, anyone who wishes to apply for any of the public assistance programs must apply in person, during normal business hours, at one of the 64 County offices or approximately 155 medical assistance (MA) sites throughout the state that help administer the programs. Most individuals show up at one of the application intake sites without the proper paperwork and often do not know the programs for which they may be eligible. The citizens of Colorado need better access and more options for determining their potential eligibility.

The Colorado program eligibility and application kit (PEAK) was designed for this purpose. PEAK is a web – based portal designed to provide clients and community partners with a modern and easily accessible tool to apply for public assistance benefits. It currently allows new clients to determine program eligibility and allows existing patrons to check on their benefit. New functionality was released in May 2011, which allowed citizens to apply for benefits and change their public assistance data through PEAK. The CBMS staff worked in collaboration with several states to implement the PEAK system in a very short timeframe. While the base system came from Wisconsin, certain enhancements and project documentation were leveraged from New York, Georgia, and New Mexico, as well. By working in collaboration and leveraging valuable assets from other states, CBMS has been able to deliver a cost efficient, quicker to market (compared with custom development) solution to meet the needs of Coloradans.

The requirements and design phases of any software developing project can be time and labor intensive. CBMS was able to accelerate delivery of the system and reduce costs because requirements and design documents already existed and only required minimal changes to make them Colorado specific. Colorado PEAK is architecture as a true three tier/layer (logical and physical) object – oriented implementation. The presentation layer was developed using Java server Pages (JSP) and HTML and is delivered to the client through the Internet. It was developed using JEE technology and implemented using an IBM Web/Sphere application server. The data access layer was developed using the Oracle 10g relational database management system.

PEAK is already benefiting many stakeholders, but has had the most impact on the individuals who seek benefits, state staff supporting CBMS, and the county and MA site users who traditionally help those individuals apply for the various public assistance programs. PEAK is available 24/7 and has given individuals additional ways to access information about the programs. The program was implemented as a result of a growing number of low income residents who have access to computers and the Internet – whether at home, at work, at the public library, or at other community – based locations. The PEAK solution is available in English and Spanish, is written at a level accessible to most individuals, and provides basic instructions for people who have not used a computer previously. Assessments are anonymous and the application is self – guiding. Therefore, individuals do not need knowledge of the various programs. All of these factors help increase participation in the programs by identifying individuals who would not normally have been aware of the assistance available to them.

Once subsequent phases are completely rolled out, the workload on County and MA site users will be significantly reduced. Individuals will be able to apply for benefits online and change their personal information, virtually eliminating much of the data entry and upfront application intake process. Finally, PEAK utilizes on – screen edits and validations to help improve the accuracy of the data entered. This will benefit all parties by eliminating data entry errors that may result in and inaccurate determination of eligibility and benefits or may prolong the overall determination process.

The PEAK initiative has succeeded on many fronts. First was leveraging the benefits obtained through collaboration. The CBMS team is comprised of multiple Health and Human services (HHS) agency representatives who worked together to identify a technology solution to a very important customer/user business need. Second, the PEAK initiative leveraged existing leading practices from other states governmental agencies and then synergized the technical solution. Third, PEAK’s design focused on the customer’s needs and usability by being user – friendly and intuitive. Finally, PEAK’s development methodology was efficient and cost – effective when compared to standard software development life cycle projects. The full benefits related to customer service delivery and reduced caseworker activities are yet to be realized pending release of future functionality. However, this functionality is currently being piloted in several counties.

During the first four months of 2011, there was a monthly average of 3873 S. – assessments, 12,720 clients checking benefits, and 70 new applications. This resulted in a significant workload reduction on County staff who would normally assist citizens and clients with these tasks. Although no formal data has been collected, it appears that online applications can be processed by County workers in half the time it takes to process the application of a walk – in citizen. The PEAK solution can most accurately be described as a best practice that can be leveraged across government organizations that offer a similar set of services to a customer base with a similar set of needs. It is highly transferable because it is a solution that “sits on top” of the core system and can be integrated without significant changes to the core system. In addition, it can be easily tailored to the specific needs of other organizations. The PEAK solution promotes customer self – service, reduces caseworker workloads, and promotes cost effective case management.

The PEAK Initiative was also nominated for the 2011 Information Week Innovation Award.

To learn more about the PEAK program visit http://www.colorado.gov/PEAK or contact the Colorado Office of Information Technology (OIT) Colorado Benefits Management System via mail 639 E. 18TH Ave. Ste. 200 Denver, CO 80202.

 

Protecting Yourself Against Identity Theft

By Todd Hauer

We hear about it all the time – cyber security breaches that have the potential to put all our financial information at risk. Identity theft is a real problem that most of us are both aware and terrified of.

Morgan Stanley’s latest Investor Pulse Poll revealed that nearly 3 out of 4 high net worth (HNW) investors – those with $100,000 or more in household liquid assets – are concerned about identify theft, even ranking ahead of terrorism and a major illness in one’s household.

How common is it?
Fully nine in 10 respondents report being impacted by data security issues in some form. The most common issue these investors have faced is a security breach at a company with which they do business. Moreover, a sizable one in six report a data breach having occurred at their employer. In addition to security breaches, many of them have been victims of computer viruses and stolen credit or debit card numbers as well.

In spite of these breaches, roughly half or more have at least some degree of trust that their financial institutions, doctors and hospitals, employers, communications providers and the retailers where they shop will protect their personal information. 

Coming face to face with identity theft
Few (15%) of those who have not yet been affected by identity theft feel “very” confident they would know what to do if faced with this situation. Moreover, 58% of these respondents who have not been impacted by identity theft imagine that it would be “very” stressful to deal with.

They have a strong sense that they and their loved ones — parents/in-laws and/or children — could be victims of identity theft and not even know it. More than half expect identity theft to be more of a concern to them in the next three years, while relatively few feel that all the talk about identity theft is overblown.  

Finding a solution
With technology constantly changing, these HNW investors feel that it is difficult to find the best way to protect themselves. So what can you do now? Be diligent about monitoring your credit report and account statements. Enroll in electronic alerts for account or fraud activity if your bank or financial institution provides it. Finally, notify your financial institution as soon as possible of any suspicious activity.

Finally, be sure to maintain anti-virus and anti-malware software, create strong passwords, don’t share crucial information like your birthdate and address on social networking websites and be sure to use privacy settings. But by instilling a few simple steps today, you will be better prepared tomorrow.

The Investor Pulse Poll surveyed 752 high net worth investors during the spring of2016. High net worth investors account for 95% of total U.S. household investable assets by value, according to Federal Reserve data. The Investor Pulse Poll was conducted by GfK Public Affairs & Corporate Communications using the GfK KnowledgePanel. In order to qualify for this study, respondents were required to have $100,000 or more in household liquid investable assets, be between the ages of 25 and 75 years old.

Todd Hauer is a Financial Advisor with the Global Wealth Management Division of Morgan Stanley in Denver. The information contained in this article is not a solicitation to purchase or sell investments. Any information presented is general in nature and not intended to provide individually tailored investment advice.  The views expressed herein are those of the author and may not necessarily reflect the views of Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, or its affiliates. Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, LLC, member SIPC. 

SBA Introduces Online Tutorials for Small Businesses Seeking Federal R&D Funding

WASHINGTON –The U.S. Small Business Administration released its highly anticipated Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) online tutorials to help small businesses navigate the SBIR program. The site provides users with a mobile-compatible site to learn about the program through a combination of videos and text. This platform will provide accessible program information and training resources to underrepresented areas. There is no registration or fee required and the courses are open to all.  
 
“We are excited to introduce these tutorials. We know there are many small businesses in rural communities as well as young entrepreneurs that are unaware of this amazing program,” said  Mark Walsh, SBA’s Associate Administrator for Investment and Innovation. “SBA has pulled together resources from across the federal government, providing them in a format easily accessible on mobile devices, while allowing users to select just the information they need.” 
 
The SBIR and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, also called “America’s Seed Fund,” inject $2.5 billion every year into small, innovative and nimble firms across the nation. The mission of each program is to support R&D in technical areas that align with American priorities, and build a strong national economy to meet the pressing needs of the federal government. Currently, there are 11 federal agencies with SBIR/STTR programs. 
 
“This new source should be invaluable to entrepreneurs looking to take advantage of our SBIR and STTR programs, which are the largest source of non-dilutive early stage R&D dollars available to small businesses,” Walsh added. “Further, these courses will help the SBA provide timely and accurate information about the programs to our entrepreneurs regardless of their geographic location or ability to attend one of our conferences or SBIR Road Tour events.” 
 
With 52 modules housed within 10 courses, the platform addresses topics relevant to small businesses that are new to the SBIR/STTR programs and companies that have previously received SBIR funding. Topics include:  

  • Agency differences
     
  • Registration requirements  
     
  • SBIR Data Rights
     
  • Accounting and  
     
  • How to find partners.   

More topics are being developed for future tutorials. Tools, resources, links and quizzes accompany each tutorial to help users navigate the process of applying for and winning federal awards. To find out more about SBA’s Online Tutorials, or to begin your learning experience, please visit www.sbir.gov/tutorials.  
 
About SBIR/STTR  
The programs represent the nation's largest source of non-diluted early stage research and development funding for small businesses. The programs are administered by the SBA in collaboration with 11 federal agencies, which collectively support more than $2.5 billion in federal research and development funding annually. The program is ideal to help early stage firms obtain the needed funding to advance their technology, and was the seed funding for hundreds of now publically traded companies like Qualcomm and Biogen. Additional information about each program can be found at www.sbir.gov. Follow us @SBIRgov and #SBIR to stay updated on the latest SBIR news and announcements.   
 
About the U.S. Small Business Administration
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) was created in 1953 and since January 13, 2012 has served as a Cabinet-level agency of the federal government to aid, counsel, assist and protect the interests of small business concerns, to preserve free competitive enterprise and to maintain and strengthen the overall economy of our nation. The SBA helps Americans start, build and grow businesses. Through an extensive network of field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations, the SBA delivers its services to people throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Guam. www.sba.gov 

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Release Date: Thursday, July 21, 2016
Release Number: 16-54
Contact: Tiffani S. Clements (202) 401-0035
nternet Address: http://www.sba.gov/news

Millennials, Manufacturing and Momentum in Colorado's Startup Space

On Friday, July 8, 2016 Women in Business (WIB) and the Economic Development Group (EDG) of the South Metro Denver Chamber (SMDC) held their annual Joint Speaker Series. The event was entitled Exploring Colorado's Startup Space, in light of resounding statistics about entrepreneurship and technology in Colorado. Featured speakers were Debra Wilcox, Founder & CEO of The 3D Printing Store; Peter Melby, President of Greystone Technology; and Jeremiah Fellows, Expert Marketing Consultant.

Hardly a week passes without Colorado or the metro Denver area making headlines with the latest ranking or innovative new company. Colorado ranked fourth for early-stage venture capital investment in 2012. Even though investment dipped sharply by this year as reported by the Denver Business Journal, that was a trend across the nation. The numbers are still very strong. According to the South Metro Denver Chamber, “Colorado startups raised more than $683 million in new funding and generated over $2.7 billion in exit revenues across the state” in 2015.

By presenting this panel discussion about the startup space in Colorado, event organizers were hoping to help answer the question, “What does this mean for you?” for the wide-range of leading businesses which comprise chamber membership. After all, if a company isn’t looking for venture capital or high-risk projects, why does it matter if there are a lot of startups in the community? It turns out that it matters in a variety of ways, from the talent pool to production methods to employee benefits.

One speaker, Peter Melby, confessed that he is not a fan of startup culture.  It may do the tech industry a disservice. He’d like to say, “No ping pong table required” in a nod to the play-hard-work-harder perception often associated with startups. But he acknowledges that flexibility is often required to attract the best candidates in his industry. This culture most associated with Millennials in the workplace is the one that appeals to Gen X and Baby-Boomer employees as well. “We have the momentum of economics, and we need to be good stewards of that,” he explained.

Another speaker, Debra Wilcox, explained how this culture has been extremely attractive as her business went from being somewhat obscure to one of the biggest game-changers of this century – 3D printing. Specifically, The 3D Printing Store was among Colorado’s first to make this technology accessible. She has seen how the marketplace and channels for distribution transformed or are completely novel. It is the time of “the Maker Economy” as companies like hers lead the way in manufacturing. This is one example of how the startup space is not just for what may be considered tech companies. Look for Deb speaking about Women in Manufacturing at Denver Startup Week.

Jeremiah Fellows, another speaker, provided some strong advice about the startup culture. All businesses can best take advantage of being in one of the best places in the country for innovation. “We need to be disciplined about what brought people here,” to protect the entrepreneurial spirit and business-friendly policies as well as the character of our communities. “Gentrification pushes out creativity,” he wrapped up. It certainly gave the crowd something to consider far beyond how the startup space effects not just you and you, but us all.

The event was hosted by Arapahoe Libraries District (ALD) at Koelbel Library in Centennial. As Colorado Business Roundtable reported, ALD Executive Director Nicolle Davies was named the 2016 Library Journal Librarian of the Year. It is the first time that a librarian in Colorado has earned this honor.

Leaders from SMDC also briefly addressed the crowd: Kimberly Alexander, Chair of WIB; Doug Tisdale, Executive VP of Economic Development; Bob Golden, President and Chief Executive Officer; and Kim DeCoste, Chair of the upcoming Women in Business Ignite and Elevate Conference. In fact, the topic of generational opportunities in the workplace will be explored further at the September 8 conference with the theme, "Generations of Leadership." Registration is open to everyone, not just women and not just chamber members! Click here for information about tickets, sponsorship and awards. 

Colorado Technology Association Board names Andrea Young as new CEO

Colorado Technology Association (CTA) is pleased to announce the selection of its new CEO, Andrea J. Young, a dynamic technology executive with more than 20 years experience driving innovation and growth for multiple industries within the Colorado tech economy.

Young began her career building state of the art telecommunications platforms for commercial real estate in the Denver Tech Center. From there, her career led her to two highly impactful periods as Chief Information and Chief Technology Officer, first with Janus Capital Group and second with BI Incorporated, a GEO Group Company.

In addition to her primary responsibilities as a technology executive, Young has been an active leader within the industries and communities she has served. Young is no stranger to CTA. She has been on the Board of Directors since 2010, serving as Committee Chair for several key initiatives and as Chairperson of the Board in 2013. Young holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Information Systems and Masters in Business Administration from University of Denver.

“I am truly humbled and honored to be selected to lead the next evolution of CTA’s impact within the Colorado tech economy,” said Young. “I believe with the support of an incredible team, partner network, membership and Board, my passion and experience will further the legacy to drive the mission of fueling Colorado’s economy, through technology.”

Young’s first day was June 6, 2016, the same week as the sold-out Women in Technology Conference happening June 10. Visit www.coloradotechnology.org for more information. 

Boulder's Ball Aerospace Unveils First Non-Toxic Rocket Fuel Mission

Around Colorado, we hear a lot about aerospace – after all, we rank second in the nation for private sector aerospace employment, according to the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade. And around Colorado, we also hear a lot about green technologies, as Colorado Cleantech Industries Association reports that we are fourth highest on the 2015 U.S. Clean Tech Leadership Index. It seems an appropriate fit for the state, then, when a new technology combining BOTH of these popular topics is developed here. 

Colorado Business Roundtable attended a March 31, 2016 viewing, tour and panel which showcased NASA's Green Propulsion Infusion Mission (GPIM) at Ball Aerospace and Technologies Corp. in Boulder, Colorado. This NASA spacecraft is safer on the ground and more efficient in space thanks to a new, non-toxic fuel. 

A Ball Aerospace engineer adjusts the thermal insulation on NASA's Green Propellant Infusion Mission spacecraft bus following integration of the propulsion system. Credit: Ball Aerospace

A Ball Aerospace engineer adjusts the thermal insulation on NASA's Green Propellant Infusion Mission spacecraft bus following integration of the propulsion system. Credit: Ball Aerospace

Enthusiastic remarks were given by stakeholders including Rob Strain, President of Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp.; Steve Jurczyk, Associate Administrator for NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate in Washington; Chris McLean, Principal Investigator for GPIM at Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp.; Julie Van Kleeck, Vice President of Space Programs at Aerojet Rocketdyne; and U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter of Colorado.

Strain spoke first and broke it down for those of us who are not directly in aerospace engineering. GPIM means that both the vehicle and its fuel will be better, cheaper, simpler and safer all around. This GPIM is another in a long line of technological breakthroughs developed, in part, over Ball’s sixty year history on the Boulder campus.

NASA’s Jurczyk addressed the crowded room with some encouraging estimates: GPIM has a 50% decrease in fuel propellant with a 50% improvement in performance rating. Future satellites will have longer missions employing additional maneuverability, increased payload space and simpler launch processing. It employs the first modern thrusting system since the 1960’s. 

Rep. Perlmutter, who sits on the Subcommittee for Space on the House Committee for Science, Space and Technology, related how proud he is that an expert witness from Colorado is so often called for those panels, due to the state’s ranking and reputation. Perlmutter discussed the human drives for exploration and optimism which inspire people to ask and seek to answer the question, “What’s on the other side of the universe?”

Credit: Ball Aerospace

Credit: Ball Aerospace

Aerojet Rocketdyne’s Van Kleeck noted how rare it is to get to create a new propellant. “I hate to say it’s rocket science, but, well…,” and she trailed off into chuckles. But everyone was listening with seriousness and agreement as she revealed how success in this project came through true collaboration, not just on the technology but on the execution. “We always found a way,” she said.

Colorado resident and project lead McLean provided many technological details, specifically noting that dramatic increases to safety in the past 10-15 years provided a great advantage in this process. Human and environmental health may be improved with this new green propellant, since traditional rocket fuels are highly toxic and unstable. McLean also spoke highly of the partnerships that led to this high level of progress: Ball Aerospace, Aerojet Rocketdyne, Edwards Air Force Research, Laboratory (AFRL), NASA Glenn Research Center (GRC), NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) and NASA Kennedy Space Center (KSC), with additional mission support from the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center at Kirtland Air Force Base.

GPIM will launch in 2017. The discussion and remarks took place in Ball’s Overlook Conference Room, which at the time happened to overlook the build-out of JPSS-1, the next-generation weather satellite. Stay tuned for that launch next year as well, as the Colorado aerospace climate continues to soar.

Learn more:
GPIM Fact Sheet from Ball Aerospace

An artist's rendering of NASA's Green Propellant Infusion Mission payload in flight aboard the Ball Aerospace BCP-100 spacecraft. Credit: Ball Aerospace Credits: Ball Aerospace

An artist's rendering of NASA's Green Propellant Infusion Mission payload in flight aboard the Ball Aerospace BCP-100 spacecraft. Credit: Ball Aerospace

Credits: Ball Aerospace

NASA Selects American Small Business, Research Institution Projects for Continued Development

NASA has selected 137 research and technology proposals from 117 American small businesses and research institutions that will enable NASA's future missions into deep space, while also benefiting the U.S. economy right here on Earth.

The agency received 323 proposals in response to its 2015 solicitation for its Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. From those, NASA selected 134 SBIR Phase II General proposals, with a total value of approximately $100.5 million, and three Phase II Select proposals, valued at approximately $3.8 million, for contract negotiations under Phase II of the SBIR program. [Note from COBRT: twelve SBIR Phase II General proposals were chosen from ten Colorado-located companies: Composite Technology Development, Inc.; ExoTerra Resource, LLC; Extreme Diagnostics, Inc.; Pioneer Astronautics (two projects); Quest Thermal Group; ROCCOR, LLC; Sporian Microsystems, Inc.; TDA Research, Inc.; Tendeg, LLC; and Vescent Photonics, Inc. (two projects).]

Proposals were selected according to their technical merit and feasibility, in addition to the experience, qualifications and facilities of the submitting business. Additional criteria included effectiveness of the work plan and commercial potential.

"We are pleased to select more than 100 SBIR proposals again this year. These proposals represent the entrepreneurial spirit of small businesses that fuel our economy and create jobs on Main Street," said Steve Jurczyk, associate administrator for the Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD) at NASA Headquarters in Washington. "The dollar value of these innovation projects represents an investment in the American economy."

Selected proposals from these small businesses will support the development of technologies in the areas of aeronautics, science, human exploration and operations, and space technology. A sampling of proposals demonstrates the breadth of research and development these awards will fund.

  • Software for single-operator, multiple unmanned aircraft systems missions that could assist NASA and the commercial space industry in managing multiple rover and spacecraft missions.
  • The ultrasonic additive manufacturing (UAM) process will directly print parts in one machine at one time, eliminating part movements from process to process and vendor to vendor. UAM offers the potential for lower-cost, more reliable systems over other 3-D printing techniques such as laser-based systems.  
  • Development and commercialization of environmentally robust frequency combs that will enable the search for exoplanets. An optical frequency comb is a tool for precise measurement of color across the light spectrum.
  • Sensors for real-time cryogenic pipes monitoring that could be used not only for space launch facilities, but also for chemical refineries and production plants.

NASA's SBIR program is a competitive, awards-based program that encourages American small businesses to engage in federal research, development and commercialization. The program enables businesses to explore technological potential while providing the incentive to profit from new commercial products and services. Small businesses create about two out of every three jobs in the U.S. each year, and about half the American workforce either own or work for a small business.

SBIR Phase II General and Phase II Select projects will expand on the results of recently completed Phase I projects. Phase I projects received six-month contracts as much as $125,000. SBIR Phase II projects last no more than two years and receive contracts valued as much as $750,000 per award. Awards under the SBIR Phase II Select solicitation may be as much as $1.5 million per award. Phase III, or the commercialization of an innovation, may occur after successful completion of Phase II.

NASA's Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, California, manages the SBIR Program for STMD. Each of NASA's 10 centers manage individual projects.

STMD is innovating, developing, testing and flying hardware for use in NASA's future missions. For more information about NASA's investment in space technology, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/spacetech

-end-

Gina Anderson
Headquarters, Washington
202-358-1160
gina.n.anderson@nasa.gov

This news release originally appeared here at nasa.gov.

CU-Boulder Researchers Recycle Carbon-Fiber Composites Into New, Equally Strong Material

Contact:          
Wei Zhang, 303-492-0652
wei.zhang@colorado.edu
Philip Taynton, 626-353-2098
philip@mallinda.com
Clint Talbott, College of Arts & Sciences, 303-492-6111
clint.talbott@colorado.edu
Julie Poppen, CU-Boulder media relations, (O) 303-492-4007 or (M) 720-503-4922
julie.poppen@colorado.edu

Editors: High quality images and cutlines are available at this Dropbox link.

Feb. 15, 2016

CU-Boulder researchers recycle carbon-fiber composites into new, equally strong material

Carbon-fiber composites – stronger than steel and lighter than aluminum – can easily and cost-effectively be recycled into new material just as robust as the originals, a team of researchers led by the University of Colorado Boulder has found.

Additionally, both the fabrication of the new material and the recycling are energy-efficient and comparatively fast, potentially addressing barriers to wider use in manufacturing. For these reasons, the team’s carbon-fiber composites are “unprecedented,” said Wei Zhang, CU-Boulder associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry.

The findings, published online today in the journal Advanced Materials address a growing issue with these composites, plastic material that gets its brawn from embedded carbon fibers. These composite materials – used in everything from jetliners to fishing poles – are expensive but often used wherever high-strength light-weight ratios and rigidity are required.

Unlike metal, however, carbon-fiber composite is generally not recyclable. The glue that binds the fiber in most carbon-fiber composites can be broken down with expensive, energy-intensive processes that may yield toxic waste. Carbon-fiber composites can also be crushed into a fine powder, but composites made with short fibers are weak.

Millions of pounds of carbon-fiber composites are therefore destined for landfills.

However, “we can achieve complete recyclability” of both the glue and the carbon fiber, Zhang said.

Philip Taynton, who earned his doctorate in Zhang’s laboratory last year, is the lead author of the paper and co-founder of a start-up company working to bring the novel carbon-fiber composite to market.

The company’s name – Mallinda – is itself a composite of the words “malleable” and “industries.” Taynton and Zhang have also discovered a way to make hard but malleable plastics that can be refashioned into new equally strong plastic using just heat or water.

Recycling the team’s carbon-fiber composites simply requires soaking the composite in an organic solution at room temperature.

“That’s it,” Zhang said. “It’s really energy-efficient and eco-friendly.”

Taynton added, “We reuse all of the stuff that we recycle, that we reclaim. There’s nothing we have to throw away.”

Zhang and Taynton noted that the team’s carbon-fiber composite, for which the university’s Technology Transfer Office has filed a U.S. patent application, is more quickly fabricated than most carbon-fiber composites, which can take an hour to cure. The CU-Boulder team’s composites can be formed in 60 seconds.

Mallinda, LLC, which Zhang and Taynton co-founded with CU-Boulder alumnus Chris Kaffer, has gotten $150,000 in support from an NSF Small Business Innovative Research Grant. Kaffer holds a master of business administration from CU-Boulder and a doctoral degree in immunology from the University of California, Berkeley.

The university and Mallinda have signed an exclusive licensing agreement.

"We were very happy with the way that Michael Carr and the TTO worked with us to negotiate terms that are mutually beneficial for both parties," Kaffer said.

The company’s first marketing target is sporting gear such as shin guards. “You can mold it directly to your body, but it will take whatever impact you can throw at it,” Taynton said.

Co-authors on the paper are Chengpu Zhu, Samuel Loob and Yinghua Jin at CU-Boulder; Huagang Ni at Zhejiang Sci-Tech University in Hangzhou, China; and Kai Yu and H. Jerry Qi at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

The research was funded by the National Science Foundation and the Colorado Advanced Industries Accelerator Grant program.

-CU-

ABOVE: Philip Taynton (left) and Wei Zhang (right) are honored as co-winners of CU-Boulder’s 2014 New Venture Challenge in 2014. Below: the process of recycling carbon-fiber composites.

ABOVE: Philip Taynton (left) and Wei Zhang (right) are honored as co-winners of CU-Boulder’s 2014 New Venture Challenge in 2014.
Below: the process of recycling carbon-fiber composites.

recycling composites.jpg