Queen City Angels (QCA) is one of the first, if not the first, angel group in the Midwest. Founded in 2000, QCA has funded approximately 90 startup companies, investing nearly $65 million. With over 60 members, QCA supplies “smart capital” to startups. It’s not just about the money. QCA firmly believes that it is their responsibility and obligation to mentor, coach, and guide entrepreneurs to success! Learn more about them and their Executive Director, Scott Jacobs in this month’s Client Q & A.
Q: What is unique about QCA compared to other angel investment groups or venture capitalists?
A: QCA is so firmly dedicated to education (on angel investing and topics of interest to entrepreneurs) that we formed and recently received approval from the IRS for a 501c3 non-profit focused on education. If you look at the programs QCA with its partner HCDC have administered over the past 18 years (e.g. eKickStart, Morning Mentoring, Entrepreneur Boot Camp), you can clearly see how we’ve supported and helped build the local entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Q: How does Cincinnati stack up relative to peer cities with regard to development, retention, and support of its startup community? And what could be improved?
A: Cincinnati stacks quite well with its peer cities. With #StartUpCincy leading the charge through Cintrifuse, Cincinnati has gotten more than its fair share of national press for all that is going on. The cost of doing business here is quite low, and we have so many resources. It is an easy city to navigate. Tech talent is going to cost you a lot less than on the coasts. There is a strong national movement to move toward the Midwest for all it offers, and we are going notice for the higher level of quality startups born here. We could improve by attracting the “boomerangs” back to Cincinnati to raise families, start new businesses, and attract C-level talent into our startups. We need to get more accredited investors off the sidelines and get them engaged in this space. Remember, net job growth in this country comes from small business. Not large corporations!
Q: Are you seeing a particular industry or trend that stands out as something poised for tremendous growth?
A: Our society has really only scratched the surface on the technological possibilities utilizing blockchain technology and artificial intelligence. My personal opinion is that there is a tremendous upside in our use of these technologies and others. It’s about the data.
Q: What do you like most about your partnership with OfficeKey?
A: The staff is awesome, so kind and accommodating. The flexibility of being able to operate out of numerous locations is a great feature as well.
Q: What was your work experience prior to becoming the executive director of QCA?
I ran a “solo-preneurship,” marketing consulting practice; developing marketing plans for smaller companies and then staying on contract to implement the plans.
Q: How do you spend time outside of work?
A: Mostly spend time with my family. My wife and I have three little ones, ages 6, 4 and 1.
Q: If you could have dinner with one historical figure (living or dead) who would it be and why?
A: Albert Einstein
Q: If you could have one superpower, what would it be?
A: Tele-transportation – wouldn’t it be cool to see how people lived 100, 200, or 300 years ago. Imagine going to a Mozart performance? How cool would it be to see how life on our planet will be 100, 200, or 300 years from now.
Q: What is your favorite movie or tv show?
A: Curb Your Enthusiasm
Q: What is your favorite book?
A: Recent read, Bad Blood
Q: What is your favorite singer or band?