Green BIZ Client gets R&D at Iowa State University
In 2005, Andrew Hobbs founded Hobbs Building
Systems, a company that has engineered a cost-effective "green"
insulated concrete form (ICF) wall system. These ICFs contain recycled
content, are disaster resistant, and use less concrete and energy when
Referred to the BIZ by Iowa Economic
Development, Hobbs began to work with Mike Colwell. Mike introduced him to
the Institute for Physical Research and Technology (IPRT) at Iowa State
University and a technical assistance program that helps businesses take
advantage of state college resources. Hobbs is now working on plans to do
physical testing of his product.
"This data will potentially increase
the application opportunities of the product in new construction of
buildings," Andrew says. The findings are also expected to validate
that this is an affordable, durable and energy-efficient solution to the
In 2008, Hobbs Building Systems expanded
their marketing to include all of North America.
"Mike has been an excellent resource
for me and my company," Andrew says. "He's not only been a mentor
with his wealth of business knowledge, but also he has provided me with
many valuable resources through his network of contacts."
To learn more about Hobbs Building Systems
and their E-Rated Wall System, visit them online at www.hobbsbuildingsystems.com or call Andrew at
(866)[masked] Ext. 2.
Want to know how you can avoid fraud in your business?
Joni Tonnemacher, CPA, CFD, will be the
guest speaker at the BIZ Business Insights and Networking luncheon in the
Arthur Davis Room at the Des Moines Partnership on May 21.
As a Certified Fraud Deterrence Analyst
and partner of McGowen, Hurst, Clark & Smith, P.C., Joni has
experience with businesses in a wide variety of areas. She assists
businesses in identifying occurrences of fraud as well as the creation and
introduction of effective controls that help them avoid fraud.
Joni will share with us key fraud
statistics that relate to small businesses and warning signs that fraud may
be occurring. She will also share with us a few simple steps that small
business owners can take to help avoid fraud.
How to approach investors
At the March Insights and Networking
luncheon, Ken Kaplan from Cellencor talked about his philosophies as an
angel investor and his advice on approaching investors.
Ken knows business from both sides of the
table. He launched Microware Systems, which designed microprocessor-based
products, in 1977. He eventually sold it to Radisys Corporation and
remained on staff until his retirement in '02.
Finding that retirement didn't quite suit
him, Ken decided to delve into the world of angel investing. But he wanted
to do it his own way. He didn't want to just write a check. He wanted to
invest his expertise and experience to help the companies avoid some of the
common pitfalls and growing pains that can hit a young organization.
When asked how entrepreneurs should
approach angel investors, Ken had some great advice.
~ Sit down and bounce your proposal off of
someone with experience in this area.
~ Make sure your story is complete. If it
isn't, how do you fill in the holes?
~ Have a complete budget and a plan for
~ Be able to project and show the
~ Give your company a realistic valuation.
~ Make sure your leaders have business
To learn more about Cellencor, visit their
What do you see when you look in the mirror?
Bob Mortensen suggests that you might just
see your company.
Independent business consultant and
director of business development for EndoMetric Corporation, Bob Mortensen was our guest on
April 16th and much like you'd expect from a man with his credentials, he
challenged our thinking and inspired our vision.
Bob suggested that everyone take a good
long look in the mirror, because companies generally take on the
personality of their owner. He encouraged us to be candid with ourselves
and to recognize that if there's something we're not happy about in our
organization, odds are its origins are with us.
He also talked about infusing your company
with the personality you want it to have and how you can influence that.
Bob went on to talk about how a company
needs to master the basics - good product, fair pricing and exceptional
customer service - before it can truly be remarkable. Because part of being
remarkable is embracing change.
For a copy of Bob's presentation slides, click here.
SBA Emerging 200 Initiative to help Des Moines small businesses
The Small Business Administration (SBA) has chosen
Des Moines as a participant in the inaugural year of the SBA Emerging 200
Through this program, 20 Des Moines-area
small businesses will be chosen to participate in an educational experience
that will allow them to develop a successful expansion strategy, including
contracting and capital access options. They will also have the opportunity
to network, work with experienced mentors, meet city leaders and make
According to Joe Folsom, district director
for the Iowa SBA, 20-23 businesses have expressed interest in
participating. The next step, which starts in a few weeks, is to meet with
each of these businesses to determine eligibility as well as their levels
For more information on the SBA Emerging
200 initiative, visit http://www.sba.gov/e200/index.html.
May Business Insights and Networking Lunch
May 21st, 11:30am
Want to know how you can avoid fraud in
your business? Joni Tonnemacher, CPA, CFD, will be the guest speaker at the
BIZ Business Insights and Networking luncheon on May 21st.
Des Moines Partnership
700 Locust Street, Suite 100 (map it)
$10 for BIZ members
$12 for nonmembers
To register or for more information,
contact Cathy Spenceri.
Branding Breakfast AND Lunch on May 7
May 7, 7:30am & Noon
McLellan Marketing Group's quarterly
branding breakfast AND lunch is May 7.
The breakfast meeting (they'll provide
Workforce Center, 430 East Grand Ave
7:30 am as usual (map it)
They will repeat the same content (you
Simpson College WDM campus, 3737 Westown
Parkway (classroom #9)
Noon (map it)
Please RSVP and tell them -- breakfast or lunch.
Outclassing Your Competition
May 14, 8:30am - 1:30pm
Set yourself apart from the rest by
joining us for a half-day examination and instruction of business and
dining etiquette on Wednesday, May 14, at the Embassy Club, 801 Grand
Ave. 40th Floor.
$135 per person/members
$155 per person/non-members
Includes four-course luncheon
Download printable registration form here.
For more information, contact Meg Fitz.
Business Building Breakfasts
May 21, 7:30am - 8:30am
Tim Johnson, chief accomplishment
officer of Carpe Factum, Inc., will be covering the topic of
June 18, 7:30am - 8:30am
Victor Aspergren, ESOP Evangelist for Unaverage Leadership Consulting, will be speaking
on Corporate Culture.
IowaBiz holds their monthly Business Branding
Breakfast the third Wednesday of every month. Join them for breakfast and
to hear their resident experts share their knowledge and expertise that
is valuable to everyone in today's marketplace.
Professional Solutions Insurance
14001 University Avenue, Clive IA (map it)
Please RSVP and let them know you will be there!
Mark Your Calendars!
The BIZ's monthly lunch/meeting will be
held the 3rd Wednesday of every month (we skip July and December). Make
sure you don't have a conflict by protecting those dates in advance.
Not only do we bring in excellent
speakers but the networking opportunities alone are worth the price of