Attracting Technology Start-Ups to Newark
Steve Adubato goes on-location to the 2019 VOICE Summit at NJIT to speak with Tom Wisniewski, Co-Founder & Managing Partner, Newark Venture Partners, about the advancements in voice technology and the company’s mission to attract and grow great technology start-ups in the city of Newark.
"Hi, I'm Steve Adubato. Welcome to the Voice Summit here at NJIT in Newark, New Jersey. This is a big deal. We were here last year. It's bigger this year. More people. More presentations. More forums. A fascinating group of people. This is the largest Voice Summit in the world. Not just in the country, but in the world. We're joined by Tom Wisniewski, co-founder and managing partner of an entity called Newark Venture Partners. Which is? A venture capital fund, based here in Newark. 50 million bucks up front? Yes. So we raised the fund about three years ago. The idea was to try and bring venture capital to Newark, to try and be part of a revival of the tech ecosystem here. So we invest from a hundred thousand up to a million in B2B technology companies, bring them here to Newark. Business to business? Business to business is the focus. So that would be using a technology to help one of the many businesses that are out there. And we bring them to Newark. Some of them choose to stay and set up shop here. We've got 31 of the 65 companies we've invested in have a presence here, and 15 of those decided to be... make their headquarters Newark. The idea is to use the venture capital to help those companies grow and succeed, and some of them will lay down roots here and help us create that tech ecosystem. We're talking jobs. We're talking economic activity. We're talking about more taxes being paid. We're not going to turn this into a commercial, but for those that have succeeded, and are succeeding, it's a big impact? It's real. It is real. I think that there's the direct impact we can have, the jobs that we can create. There's a company we invested in called 1Huddle, that came here with two people... What is it? 1...? 1Huddle. What do they do? What do they do? They provide... they do the gamification of training. So they replace the boring training you'll get out of a binder with Flash games. So like, kind of trivia games. They've been enormously successful. It's far more effective than typical training. And they've grown to about 20 people now. So there's 20 people in... from the organization. That's over the last three years... Where would they be? ...and they continue to grow. Yeah. Yeah. A great business or success. Where are they? They're actually in our space in the Audible building. Right in Newark? Yes. Right in Newark. Yeah. By the way, people don't realize, Audible is right here in Newark. A great operation. Don and the team are doing a... Yes. ...great job there. Yes. By the way, let's disclose. Because there's some crossover here..."