OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) – It’s an exciting week for Omaha’s entrepreneurs as the Greater Omaha Chamber brings hundreds of founders, CEOs, and new startup businesses together to connect at Startup Omaha Week.
“It’s a weeklong celebration in the startup community really trying to spotlight and focus in on entrepreneurship and some of the great things that are happening,” says Laurel Oetken, the director of entrepreneurship and innovation at the Greater Omaha Chamber.
It’s the first time the event has been hosted in more than five years, giving businesses the chance to connect with others and give new ideas some exposure.
“A lot of the time when you are building a startup and building a company, it can feel pretty lonely, so to have other people that are in your corner, that are your cheerleaders and are trying to root on what you’re doing, it’s important so that you don’t feel like you’re in it alone,” Oetken says.
The event isn’t just geared toward current startup companies but also those that haven’t yet been created.
“There are a lot of people that are working in their corporate job and they don’t know if they can do it, and they just need to see that someone else that looks like them did it,” says Kelly Mann, the CEO of Auditminer, a software company that automates and streamlines 401K audits for accounting firms across the United States.
“When I was in public accounting, I had been told year over year, ‘try not to be such a bull in a china shop,’ and I had this epiphany that I am okay being a bull, but I am not okay living in a china shop,” she says.
Mann quit her job in 2019, founded her businesses, and found the local startup community.
“I just felt like I fit right in and all of my ideas I realized could become a reality if I work towards them.”
She says events like these allow her remote team to bond, as well as find new resources and even potential employees.
“Our customers are nationwide, so we don’t have a lot of customers here in Omaha but we have employees here in Omaha and we want to build out the community and hire those employees and really create a robust startup community in Omaha.”
Startup Omaha Week will have events each night of the week. You can find the list of events here.
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