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NewBoCo to take over EntreFEST

Media Contact
Jessalyn Holdcraft, NewBoCo Director of Marketing

Cedar Rapids, Iowa, June 21, 2016, — EntreFEST is coming back in 2017 and has a new home at the New Bohemian Innovation Collaborative.

The largest entrepreneurship and innovation conference in Iowa will return May 4-5, 2017, in Iowa City after a one-year hiatus.  

In 2015, the program grew to 1000 attendees, and the leadership team at the University of Northern Iowa’s Center for Business Growth and Innovation (CBGI) decided to take a year off to find a long-term sustainable plan for the program going forward.

The New Bohemian Innovation Collaborative (NewBoCo) operates the Iowa Startup Accelerator in Cedar Rapids, Vault Coworking & Collaboration Space, and numerous other startup programs across Eastern Iowa.

“We’re excited to bring EntreFEST back in 2017, as Iowa’s leading entrepreneurship conference,” NewBoCo Executive Director Eric Engelmann said. “EntreFEST is critically important to our state – it has changed the lives of many entrepreneurs in Iowa and across the Midwest.”

NewBoCo will work with the University of Northern Iowa to transition the event to a new, year-round operational team, including a role specifically to lead the event’s planning, coordination, and operation. Applications are now open.

“We anticipate the 2017 event will be very similar to the amazing EntreFEST events in 2014 and 2015, with speakers, panelists, and workshops for entrepreneurs and corporate innovators,” Engelmann said. “But we also have some new ideas to help take the event to the next level.”

Registration for the event is expected to open later this summer.

Paul Kinghorn, Director at CBGI, stated, “Along with our many partners including the University of Iowa, Iowa State University, the Iowa Farm Bureau’s Renew Rural Iowa program, the Iowa Economic Development Authority, and the numerous additional sponsors that in the past have made the event such a success, we thank the leadership team at NewBoCo and wish them continued success well into the future.”

About NewBoCo

The New Bohemian Innovation Collaborative is a nonprofit with the mission to accelerate world-changing ideas, from Iowa. The organization aims to create impactful startup businesses that grow here through its Iowa Startup Accelerator program and more; to foster world-class technical and creative talent via innovative educational programs for kids and adults; to assist thriving, innovative companies in developing new products and attracting the best talent through corporate innovation programs; and to make an outstanding social impact and make the world a better place. Since 2014, the program has grown dramatically, helping hundreds of startups get off the ground and grow, and thousands of children learn to code.  

About the Center for Business Growth and Innovation

The Center for Business Growth and Innovation (CBGI) located at the University of Northern Iowa is committed to serve the development and growth needs of the entrepreneurial community throughout the State of Iowa.  With an assortment of assistance, educational and information based programs, CBGI is working to meet the unique and ever changing needs of entrepreneurs and small business owners through the timely delivery of effective and impactful services.  

In striving to grow a more vibrant and sustainable entrepreneurial community, CBGI provides support and assistance to the states underserved regions, communities and businesses.  This includes the many of Iowa’s rural communities where small businesses struggle to access the knowledge, resources and assistance needed to growth their businesses.  For more information, visit

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