The 2017 Innovation Week Birmingham begins this Friday – August 18 through August 25 – and in anticipation of the week the Birmingham Business Alliance (BBA) is highlighting sponsors and partners that help make Innovation Week Birmingham possible.
The Birmingham Venture Club is a proud partner of the 2017 Birmingham Innovation Week. Since its founding in 1985, the Birmingham Venture Club has promoted innovation through the support of the local venture capital community. Birmingham Venture Club board member Brian Cauble spoke with the BBA about the organization’s efforts to support innovation.
BBA: How does your organization promote innovation in Birmingham?
Cauble: Consistent innovation takes a healthy supply of capital, and we actively educate our members about raising capital, business planning and managing high growth ventures. The Birmingham Venture Club also helps connect those involved in investing such as venture capitalists, angel investors, accountants, attorneys, entrepreneurs, business operators and local talent.
BBA: What aspects do you feel make Birmingham an innovative city?
Cauble: To understand why Birmingham is an innovative city, simply look at our past as a guide. Innovation is in Birmingham’s DNA. In fact, Birmingham was founded by a company made up of investors that included bankers, cotton planters and railroad entrepreneurs.
Fast forward to modern times, UAB has grown into a national research institution that attracts some of the top talent in the world for medical research. Birmingham’s innovative restaurant scene is led by Frank Stitt’s Highland Bar and Grill – with nine straight James Beard nominations – and has top-notch restaurants opening every month. The Pizitz Food Hall is a recent addition to the food scene, giving Birmingham true diversity. Add a world-class business incubator, which we have in Innovation Depot, and a growing millennial creative class, and Birmingham has all the ingredients necessary to thrive in the future.
BBA: Why is it important to have a week that highlights innovation in Birmingham?
Cauble: Highlighting our successes as a city and local innovation is critical to inspiring our citizens to understand what Birmingham is truly capable of being. A week highlighting the importance of innovation is vital to showing that innovation is a requirement in the future for sustainability.