News & Media

​New startup hub will support Eau Claire entrepreneurs

EAU CLAIRE—Eau Claire startups will soon have a new local hub: WiSys VentureHome-Eau Claire.

Opening with a launch celebration on Feb. 19, WiSys VentureHome-Eau Claire will help local entrepreneurs bring ideas, innovations and technologies into the marketplace.

WiSys VentureHome-Eau Claire, a partnership between WiSys, the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and CoLab, will be located at CoLab at 312 South Barstow Street in the heart of downtown Eau Claire.

“The goal is to provide everything your startup needs under one roof,” said WiSys President Arjun Sanga. “While communities across the state have energetic initiatives for budding entrepreneurs, the local ecosystems often have some unmet needs. We work with our local partners to identify these needs and tap into central resources to fill the gaps.”

At WiSys VentureHome-Eau Claire, entrepreneurs will have easy access to:

  • A physical workspace supportive of startup development and connections. 
  • Local and statewide ecosystems of resources.
  • Research and patented technologies from the UW System.
  • Concierge service from startup experts.
  • Intellectual property and legal strategy advice.
  • Established entrepreneurship toolkits.
  • Seed funding.

The WiSys VentureHome initiative aims to establish startup hubs in communities with University of Wisconsin System campuses by working with local partners. Serving UW System faculty, staff, students and alumni, as well as local community members, the hubs will benefit from a strong connection to the UW System and local community resources.

Eau Claire was chosen as the site of the first WiSys VentureHome because of the passion for entrepreneurship in the community and strong support from local founding partners UW-Eau Claire and CoLab.

“The WiSys VentureHome launching in Eau Claire represents another exciting development for our community’s vibrant idea and innovation industry," UW-Eau Claire Chancellor James Schmidt said. "UW-Eau Claire’s faculty and students have long partnered with area businesses and organizations, as well as successful alumni, to provide research and expertise that inform the launch of new ventures. This partnership takes those connections, and the potential outcome of joint endeavors, to the next level.

CoLab, an Eau Claire coworking space provider and a home base for a number of startups, also hopes to build on the community’s entrepreneurial strength.

“CoLab is excited for the opportunities that a partnership with UW-Eau Claire and WiSys can bring to Eau Claire and this region. This community already has a strong entrepreneurial spirit and we can’t wait to watch it grow through VentureHome in CoLab’s space,” said CoLab Community Manager Elaine Coughlin.

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WiSys is a nonprofit organization that works with faculty, staff, students and alumni of the UW System to facilitate cutting-edge research programs, develop and commercialize discoveries and foster a spirit of innovative and entrepreneurial thinking across the state.