Steve Case, Rise of the Rest and growing entrepreneurship in Phoenix

rise-of-the-restBy Callan Smith Rose Law Group Reporter Social Media Coordinator

Growing entrepreneurship was the message this morning when AOL co-founder, Steve Case rolled into the Scottsdale SkySong on his Rise of the Rest bus tour. The assembled crowd included valley wide entrepreneurs, ASU President Michael Crow, Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane and Phoenix District 5 Councilman Daniel Valenzuela.

Following introductions, Case said that Phoenix is doing amazing things, but how it looks in twenty years depends on what happens next. He praised the efforts of ASU in getting people together, and said Phoenix was the twenty-fifth city visited thus far.

Case told those assembled that entrepreneurial growth revolved around three main points: interconnectedness, impact and Inclusiveness. He said there is a need to create a network of entrepreneurs to foster collaborative growth intro new directions such as healthcare, education, energy, water, and food. He stressed the importance of Inclusiveness and diversity.

Case said “the reality is entrepreneurship in the last ten or twenty years has been defined by places and people. Last year seventy-five percent of venture capital went to California, New York and Massachusetts.”

Diversity is an important aspect in “leveling the field” Case said. The next wave, as he put it, needs to be more inclusive, as very little venture capital reaches minorities. “It does matter where you are, what you look like, who you know,” Case said.

The overall point was that inclusiveness is imperative to broaden ideas and growth in the coming years. While Case’s time before the group was short, the discussion he started continued in a round table format, ideas and concerns bounced back and forth. At the end, there seemed to be a growing consensus among those assembled to bridge the gaps throughout the sprawling valley and network.

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October 2016