Read part 1: A Look at Michigan and Ohio
Read part 2: A Look at Illinois and Minnesota
In 2019, businesses in Wisconsin raised $204.8 million in 66 deals, which ranked 30th nationally. Thus, there is room for growth in this sector. As you can see, our neighbors are ahead of us in several benchmarks (see accompanying table).
To close the gap, we need to attract top-tier venture capital fund investment into the region, achieve a balance between financial performance and end-game strategic impact and increase the availability of professionally managed venture capital in the state. Examples of outside investments include:
- Novel Growth Partners (Kansas) and Flyover Capital (Kansas) in Abodo
- Bain Capital Ventures (Palo Alto) and Cultivation Capital (Chicago) in ImageMoverMD
- Zetta Venture Partners (San Francisco) in EnsoData
- Oaktree Capital Management (Los Angeles) in SHINE Medical Technologies
Wisconsin has resources in terms of university assets and state assistance. What’s missing from the proceeding list is the level of corporate involvement that states such as Michigan and Ohio enjoy. The solution for Wisconsin is that it needs to have a connected network of strategically focused investors, professionally managed venture capital funds and a portfolio of startup companies that mutually benefit from each other.