3 Surprising Cities for Small Business Success
Brown cites Mutual of Omaha as one company's supporting small businesses through its effort to purchase technology solutions from local companies. (Mutual of Omaha did not return a request for comment before publication.)
Omaha's efforts are working.
Paul Lee, a partner at Lightbank, a Chicago-based venture capital firm (its claim to fame is its founders were also the brains behind Groupon(GRPN) ), was an attendee at this year's Big Omaha conference.
Lightbank plans to announce its first investment in an Omaha-based company next week. The company, which looks for early-stage tech companies, typically invests in California, New York and Illinois, but has been increasing its efforts combing the Midwest for companies.
"We spent a lot of time combing the Midwest for companies but we have an underlying thesis that great companies are being formed everywhere (due to lowered costs of technology and distributed learning)," Lightbank partner Paul Lee writes in an email.
"From my interactions with Omaha startup folks, they're smart, authentic, hustling entrepreneurs who would rather lose their house than their investors' money. We love that ethos and are bullish on the region," he says.
-- Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York.
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