Everything You Need to Include on Your Startup’s First Website
Amanda Mollindo

Everything You Need to Include on Your Startup’s First Website

A startup’s first website should come long before you’re ready to enter the market. Setting up a website is relatively low-cost, easy to do, and  it speaks volumes to your credibility. Even before you have a solid business model or working product/service, your site can set the tone for what’s to come and help people understand your vision.

Another Year, Another Challenge: 2021 Big Pitch Student Competition
Amanda Mollindo

Another Year, Another Challenge: 2021 Big Pitch Student Competition

Last year’s Big Pitch competition coincided with an unprecedented shift. Our team and the students involved with last year’s program vividly remember the last few days of our Spring Break accelerator — as the students were preparing to pitch for the $20,000 grand prize, news broke that cases of COVID-19 were identified in the United States. Towards the end of the week, the community college school district announced spring closures; at the time, no one had any idea about how long this would last. 

CEI Launches a Campaign For The Hopi Tribe During the Pandemic
Amanda Mollindo

CEI Launches a Campaign For The Hopi Tribe During the Pandemic

Last month, our office assistant, Alexis Kahe, launched a donation campaign to collect water and essential supplies for the Hopi Tribe in Northern Arizona. In two weeks, the Phoenix community donated 163 cases of water, 80 cleaning solutions, 80 paper products food and cleaning supplies to provide to 88 households. Several of our staff members traveled to Flagstaff on May 20, 2020 to hand off donations. Since then, Alexis and her team have been distributing the donated supplies to community members from her family’s convenience store, Honani C-Store and Gallery.

The Big Pitch Goes Virtual: A Recap Of The 2020 Event
Amanda Mollindo

The Big Pitch Goes Virtual: A Recap Of The 2020 Event

The Big Pitch is CEI’s accelerator and pitch competition for student entrepreneurs who attend Maricopa Community Colleges, and it’s easily the most exciting week of the year for our team. Few things are more rewarding than meeting the finalists, bringing in seasoned business leaders to share the ups and downs of launching a company, and seeing the students support each other through one of the most challenging five days of their academic careers. 

Now in its third year, The Big Pitch was off to a strong start. Over 70 students from across the District applied to participate, and eight colleges sent ten highly motivated candidates to the competition. Students were competitively selected by faculty and staff at their respective colleges, and many competed against their peers in campus-wide “Little Pitches” to secure a coveted seat at CEI’s Big Pitch. 

CEI Clients Work to Combat Problems Caused By The COVID-19 Outbreak
Amanda Mollindo

CEI Clients Work to Combat Problems Caused By The COVID-19 Outbreak

As many businesses start reopening their doors for the first time since March, our clients have continued to work around the clock to keep their startups on-track. Although CEI has been closed to the public, much of the research and technology being developed at the Center is considered essential. In fact, many of our resident entrepreneurs have pivoted their operations to focus on solving COVID-19 related problems. Keep reading to learn about the incredible efforts our community is making to combat the Coronavirus outbreak. 

COVID-19 Business & Community Resources
Amanda Mollindo

COVID-19 Business & Community Resources

For the last month, CEI’s team has focused on shifting to virtual operations and working directly with our business clients to help them persevere in the wake of COVID-19. In that time, Phoenix’s entrepreneurial community has done an incredible job making sure local startups and small business owners have the support they need to weather these unprecedented times. 

We Hosted 3 Global Founders for a Month. Here's How it Went.
Amanda Mollindo

We Hosted 3 Global Founders for a Month. Here's How it Went.

Serving Phoenix entrepreneurs and Arizona’s startup ecosystem is always CEI’s priority, but we jump on any opportunity to expand our network and support international founders who dream of entering the U.S. market. Doing so helps us stay aware of how entrepreneurs with diverse backgrounds are thinking about problems and how their home countries are using their resources to encourage innovation.

Client Success Report Vol. 3: A Year in Review
Amanda Mollindo

Client Success Report Vol. 3: A Year in Review

2019 has turned out to be a big year for CEI. But for us, the real heroes of this story will always be our clients. Over the last 12 months, we’ve had lots of amazing new entrepreneurs walk through our doors and many of our long-term residents have hit major milestones!

Keep reading to meet our new clients and find out about all the exciting things that are happening in the hallways of CEI. 

CEI Awarded the InBIA Science & Technology Incubator of the Year
Amanda Mollindo

CEI Awarded the InBIA Science & Technology Incubator of the Year

On April 16, 2019, the Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation (CEI) was recognized as the Technology & Science Incubator of the Year by the International Business Innovation Association (InBIA) during the 33rd annual International Conference on Business Incubation in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Wilson Okwuobu, Scottsdale Community College Student, Takes Home the 2019 Big Pitch Grand Prize
Amanda Mollindo

Wilson Okwuobu, Scottsdale Community College Student, Takes Home the 2019 Big Pitch Grand Prize

After a challenging week of business education, 11 Maricopa County Community College District (MCCCD) students from across the Valley competed to win The Big Pitch, CEI’s student startup challenge. On Wednesday, March 20, each student pitched business ideas before an audience and judging panel that consisted of Dr. Karla Fisher, Provost of MCCCD; James Goulka, Managing Director of AZ Tech Investors; Geoffrey Ossias, a partner at Perkins Coie; and Tom Zender, local CEO Mentor & Business Coach.