Nearly 240 people participated in Challenge Weekend 2017, building apps and business concepts across the Centennial state in five cities: Colorado Springs, Denver, Durango, Fort Collins and Grand Junction. Two advancing teams (finalists below) from each region demonstrated the goods (i.e. brilliant use of public data, feasibility and attractiveness to the marketplace), creating genuine value for business decision-makers.
And they have their eyes on a package of incentives that is Go Code Colorado best yet: one of three $25,000 contracts with the state, a trip to Palo Alto for coaching with AT&T’s innovative Foundry Group, and an automatic interview with Boomtown. Go Code Colorado encourages teams toward ingenuity and provides them with a real path to Colorado entrepreneurship.
Statewide (and beyond) reach
On 44 teams across the state there were Go Code Colorado veterans, retirees, and students from middle school (Grand Junction), high school (Durango and Colorado Springs) and college (Durango and Denver). Fort Collins hosted participants from over five different states. Our first ever road show stop in Pueblo netted a team that competed in Colorado Springs.
About the Apps
Apps were both heart-warming and oh-so-amazing, with Colorado businesses as the beneficiaries. Competitors sought to support veterans, churches, economic development, restaurants, medical access, employee diversity, transportation, tourism, the homeless and more. John Franck, past participant and owner of Lamplighter Creatives, was amazed at how much was accomplished in just one weekend and thought the apps “focused on delivering useful data to decisions that businesses have historically made by taking a shot in the dark.”
And the Mentors Who Helped Make it Happen
With dozens of live and virtual mentors bringing expertise in data, coding, pitching, business validation, project management, intellectual property and business formation law, and all things startup (not to mention past Go Code Colorado competitors), the teams were well supported. This was Go Code Colorado’s first year to have a John Maxwell-certified coach at each location. Said Bob Kittridge, a founding member, “This event is an experience in serving for me. The teams were there with an intention to work and win. Results were evident in the final judging. Presentation quality was excellent.”
Colorado Springs: 8 Teams
Hosts: Epicentral Coworking applauds risk, embraces failure and celebrates success. No wonder we’ve felt so at home there since the beginning.
1) CacheMoney: Helps restaurant owners and entrepreneurs find a prospective location
2) Go Water: Assists in water rights issues
Denver: 13 teams
Hosts: Project Xcite is the University of Denver’s collaborative innovation and entrepreneurship program that spans the business school, engineering and computer science school and the law school.
1) <div>ersity: Hiring tool to help companies build diverse teams
2) Magpie Supply: Solves transportation problems for Colorado farmers
Durango: 4 Teams
Hosts: Durango Space downtown coworking facility, a host since the first year, helps entrepreneurs fight isolation with creativity and support.
1) Internstorm: Helps companies find interns
2) AdCub: Facilitates ad sales
Fort Collins: 11 Teams
Host: Innosphere is a science and technology start-up incubator supporting multiple industries.
1) HUDL: Helps developers with planning HUD-backed multi-family projects
2) Layers: Helps mineral owners and investors to manage and exchange mineral property
Grand Junction: 7 teams
Hosts: This was the first major, multi-day event for Factory, a coworking space supporting the Grand Valley. It went flawlessly!
1) KodeMonkey: Connects capacity with needs in the oil and gas industry
2) CoFax: Helps freelancers and small businesses relocate within Colorado
And those who didn’t advance, listen up. Ginny Sawyer, project and policy manager for the City of Fort Collins and a judge, was impressed with both app quality and participant passion. “The teams that do not advance should absolutely keep moving forward with their businesses and ideas. We had a hard time picking just two winners.”
Finalists will enjoy a travel-food-and-lodging paid mentorship weekend in Boulder, with access to Techstars, Boomtown, House of Genius and other bright minds from Colorado’s tech community.This will prep them for the final competition on May 24th, but also spark some learning they can leverage well beyond Go Code Colorado.
Register now! Come hear the finalists pitch their apps, celebrate the big winners and learn the power of public data in the private realm.