TechPoint launching new peer-to-peer network for founders

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Indianapolis-based TechPoint is launching a new initiative, the Indiana Founders Network, which aims to help Hoosier entrepreneurs connect with their peers for personal support and networking.

The network, which TechPoint announced Friday, is open to current or former founders and co-founders. It is not meant for startup investors or vendors. The group’s first gathering will be a Jan. 25 kickoff breakfast.

The network aims to help founders build relationships, share information, and support each other through the stress, isolation and fear that can be part of entrepreneurship, said TechPoint Vice President of Innovation and Entrepreneurship Chelsea Linder.

Linder joined TechPoint in July after spending more than five years with Gener8tor, an investment firm and startup accelerator operator that operates in multiple states, including Indiana. Founders who participate in a Gener8tor accelerator form close and enduring professional relationships, Linder said, and she anticipates the Indiana Founders Network will play a similar role.

“I have founders who I worked with in 2018, in that group setting, who still—both with myself and with each other—call all the time to ask for help,” Linder said. “And I really think that the basis of that is just having the opportunity to spend time together and build those personal relationships, and trust-based relationships.”

TechPoint intends to act only as a convener, leaving it up to the network’s members to drive the group’s activities, Linder said. For example, the network might host a gathering focused on a specific topic, like raising venture funding, or for founders who hold a particular job title such as CEO or chief technology officer.

The network is targeting entrepreneurs in the industry sectors represented by TechPoint and its fellow Central Indiana Corporate Partnership organizations: technology, advanced manufacturing and logistics, agbioscience, life sciences and health care.

To assure that only entrepreneurs join the network, prospective members must apply online—but all founders who apply will be accepted, Linder said.

TechPoint hopes to have between 30 and 50 founders join the network in 2024, with additional membership growth in following years, Linder said.

Membership in the network is free for TechPoint members and $105 per year for others. Network members receive perks that include a free 10-day co-working pass at 16 Tech and software discounts.

Visit this link to learn more or to apply for membership.

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