Ann Arbor SPARK Brings Back a2Tech360 Conference Oct. 7-14

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Liberty Street Scene in Ann Arbor
Liberty Street in downtown Ann Arbor will be taken over by the Tech Trek and Mobility Row as part of the a2Tech360 conference from Ann Arbor SPARK. // Stock Photo

The a2Tech360 conference from Ann Arbor SPARK will take place from Oct. 7 through Oct. 14 at both online and in various in-person locations throughout the city.

The technology and innovation conference is a week of experiences, conversations, and connections designed to strengthen and expand the region’s ecosystem. Entrepreneurs, researchers, investors, businesses, academic institutions, non-profits, job seekers, and the public can all explore Ann Arbor’s extensive tech culture through a broad spectrum of programming.

“Over the years, a2Tech360 has brought together a diverse range of people and organizations in celebration of Ann Arbor’s unique innovative environment and high-tech ecosystem,” says Paul Krutko, president and CEO of Ann Arbor SPARK. “Since 2017, it has served as a fun and engaging way to learn more about the remarkable spirit of innovation that has earned Ann Arbor consistent recognition as a top destination for business development and growth.”

This year will kick off with the Invest360 Investor Showcase. Bringing additional depth to a2Tech360, Invest360 leverages Michigan’s regional strengths in entrepreneurship and showcases a curated group of companies to Michigan’s investor community.

The companies will compete for $50,000 in one of three categories — information technology, mobility, and healthcare. The three winners will then have the opportunity to pitch in person on the morning of Friday, Oct. 14 at the Michigan Theater for a chance to receive the People’s Choice award and an additional $50,000

The original catalyst for a2Tech360, A2 Tech Trek and its companion event, Mobility Row, close out the week from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Oct. 14 outside of SPARK headquarters at 330 E. Liberty St. in downtown Ann Arbor.

On Oct. 14, Ann Arbor SPARK’s annual Tech Talk will be held from 10 a.m. to noon at the Michigan Theater.

Other sessions and events include:

  • FastTrack Awards on Friday, Oct. 7, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the University of Michigan Golf Course Clubhouse — These annual awards honor fast-growing ‘gazelle’ companies headquartered in Washtenaw and Livingston counties. Winners will be announced during the event. This event is presented by Ann Arbor SPARK. General admission is $75.
  • MI Angel Summit on Monday, Oct. 10, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Sheraton Ann Arbor Hotel — The fifth annual Michigan Angel Summit is a great opportunity for individual investors to meet others interested in learning more about the exciting asset class called Angel investing. Current and potential Angel investors can meet like-minded people from around the state and learn about the latest trends and opportunities available. This event is presented by Ann Arbor SPARK. Early bird admission, which closes Sept. 16 for all events is $100. General admission is $150.
  • Mobility Summit on Tuesday, Oct. 11, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Sheraton Ann Arbor Hotel — Visionaries and leaders from public, private, academic, and nonprofit spheres gather to share, learn, inspire, and advance mobility in Michigan and around the globe. This event is presented by Ann Arbor SPARK. Early bird admission is $100. General admission is $150.
  • Entrepreneur Boot Camp Celebration on Tuesday, Oct. 11, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the NETSCOUT Michigan office — Entrepreneur Boot Camp is an intensive program to help entrepreneurs of early-stage, technology-driven companies quickly determine if they have a viable business opportunity and focus on crucial next steps. Celebrate the evolution of current Boot Camp entrepreneurs as they present their journey to SPARK’s panel. This event is hosted by Ann Arbor SPARK and is free.
  • 2032: What the Future Holds on Wednesday, Oct. 12, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. will be held in person at a location to be determined as well as streamed online — Hear from leaders in futurist thought as they explore today’s trends and revolutionary products alongside tomorrow’s predictions and possibilities. Co-presented by Ann Arbor SPARK and the University of Michigan’s Innovation Partnerships. The event is free.
  • Women in Tech on Wednesday, Oct. 12, from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Circ Bar — Speakers will discuss their experiences navigating the tech industry and propelling their careers as leaders in the field. They will also share how to build up career experience, maneuver a room of doubters, and discover your personal success story. This event is presented by Ann Arbor SPARK and is free.
  • Emerging Leaders on Thursday, Oct. 12, from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. at the Circ Bar — This monthly event series is a low-key, low-pressure opportunity for emerging leaders to meet peers, share challenges and opportunities, and boost their own careers. Emerging leaders are driven, passionate, and have their eyes on becoming a powerful, positive influence on their industries, companies, and communities. It is hosted by Ann Arbor SPARK and Kapnick Insurance for free.
  • Tech Talk + Invest360 Finale on Friday, Oct. 14, from 10 a.m. to noon at the Michigan Theater — This event features TED-style talks by leading innovators in their respective fields. From origin stories to behind-the-scenes accounts of the fascinating technologies being developed, hear from the brilliant minds behind the Ann Arbor region’s most innovative companies. The Invest360 celebration after Tech Talk features a People’s Choice vote that will select the foremost Invest360 company. This event is hosted by Ann Arbor SPARK and is free.
  • Tech Trek and Mobility Row on Friday, Oct. 14, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Liberty St. in downtown Ann Arbor — A2 Tech Trek and Mobility Row is a free community street fair and company open house where regional technology companies showcase their innovations and culture. From robotics and game developers to self-driving shuttles and medical marvels, attendees will gain insight and come away inspired by the technological advancements that will define and change the years ahead. This event is presented by Ann Arbor SPARK and is free.

a2Tech360 is presented by the Ann Arbor-Ypsilanti SmartZone Local Development Finance Authority and the Michigan Economic Development Corp. with support from Russell Video. For more information on each of the a2Tech360 events or to register, click here.

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