Don't miss these January events — from startup showcases to tech talks. Photo via Getty Images

Ring in the new year with fellow Houston innovators at everything from networking meetups to startup showcases.

Here's a roundup of events you won't want to miss out on so mark your calendars and register accordingly.

Note: This post may be updated to add more events.

 January 6 — Texas Business Expansion

The Texas Business Expansion event is focused on helping attendees develop strategies in the financial sector to grow business in the Lone Stars State. Get inspired by industry experts, network with like-minded professionals, and gain valuable insights into the Texas business landscape.

This event is Saturday, January 6, from 1:30 to 6 pm at 25402 Katy Mills Pkwy. Click here to register.

January 16 — Bayou City Startups January Happy Hour

Unwind and reconnect with your favorite (or soon to be) Houston startup founders, funders, operators, and ecosystem builders.

This event is Tuesday, January 16, from 5 to 7 pm at EZ's Liquor Lounge. Click here to register.

 January 18 — Power of Women in Business Conference

Sponsored by the National Association of Women Business Owners, this conference is is designed to celebrate women in the business world, incorporating a lineup of influential speakers, accomplished entrepreneurs, and industry experts who have made significant strides in their respective fields. This event serves as a platform for networking, knowledge sharing, and fostering meaningful connections within the thriving business community.

This event is Thursday, January 18, from 8:30 am to 3 pm at Norris Conference Center. Click here to register.

January 23 — Pearland Innovation Hub Open House

Come explore and take a tour of the new Spacio.us location on Broadway Bend Drive in Pearland, TX, USA. Engage with local small business owners, network with industry professionals, and get inspired by innovative ideas at the Pearland Innovation Hub Open House.

This event is Tuesday, January 23, from 2 to 5 pm at Pearland Innovation Hub. Click here to register.

January 24 — Minority Product Launch

Discover a diverse range of groundbreaking products that highlight the creativity and ingenuity of underrepresented communities. From cutting-edge tech gadgets to unique fashion accessories, this event is a celebration of diversity and entrepreneurship.

This event is Wednesday, January 24, at the Ion from 5 to 8 pm. Click here to register.

January 25 — NASA Tech Talks

In this presentation, Mr. Montgomery Goforth, Assistant Director, Strategic Pursuits & Partnerships – Engineering Directorate, NASA JSC, and other aerospace subject matter experts will discuss the technology development challenges faced by NASA’s Johnson Space Center (JSC) and the surrounding Aerospace community in our ongoing efforts as the hub of human spaceflight. The presentation will focus on the ways in which these challenges, and the associated opportunities, can be leveraged by Houston’s innovation community.

This event is Thursday, January 25, from 6 to 7:30 pm at the Ion. Click here to register.

 January 30 — Texas Small Business Expo

Texas Small Business Expo is a premier Trade Show, Educational Business to Business Conference, Exhibition & Networking Event for Entrepreneurs, Start-Ups and anyone that owns a Business or looking to start their own business. The main focus of this event is networking, building new business relationships and learning from Industry Experts on how to enhance your business.

This event is Tuesday, January 30, from 4 to 9 pm at Wakefield Crowbar. Click here to register.


Check out these workshops, networking events, conferences, and other goings on in Houston this month. Photo via Getty Images

10+ can't-miss Houston business and innovation events for August

WHERE TO BE

From networking meetups to startup showcases, August has a smorgasbord of opportunities for Houston innovators.

Here's a roundup of events you won't want to miss out on so mark your calendars and register accordingly.

Note: This post may be updated to add more events.


August 1— Microsoft Lunch Event: The Business Case for Generative OpenAI

This event delves into the power of artificial intelligence, specifically OpenAI, and its potential to reshape the business landscape. This event aims to guide and inform professionals seeking to understand, adapt, and integrate AI into their business models.

The agenda:

9:30 to 10:00 am - Networking and coffee

10:00 am to 12:30 pm - Session starts

12:30 to 1:30 pm - Networking and lunch

This event is Tuesday, August 1, from 9:30 am to 1:30 pm at Microsoft Technology Center. Click here to register.

August 1 — Exploring Energy Investments: A Panel Discussion

In this panel-style discussion, experts will dive deep into the opportunities and challenges of investing in the future of energy. You’ll have the opportunity to discover the latest trends and innovations that are revolutionizing the renewable and nonrenewable energy landscape. From solar and wind to hydro and geothermal to oil, natural gas, and others, gain a comprehensive understanding of various energy sources and their impact on the environment, society, and your investment portfolio. After the presentation, in-person attendees will have the opportunity to pitch any deals they have to the audience.

This event is Tuesday, August 1, from 6 to 8:30 pm at Quest Trust. Click here to register.

August 2 — Solar Switch Houston Q&A Social Hour

Solar Switch Houston, a group buy program for rooftop solar panels and optional batteries offered for Houston-area residents, is offering a discussion panel to help homeowners and small businesses learn about installing rooftop solar and battery storage. Come for a question and answer social hour about Solar Switch Houston to get your solar questions answered. Appetizers and beverages will be provided.

This event is Wednesday, August 2, from 5 - 6 pm at United Way. Click here to register.

August 2 — Tenth Annual Bayou Startup Showcase

This annual event is a celebration of entrepreneurship, the newest startups and small businesses from Rice University and University of Houston accelerators, and the community supporting them. The showcase features 25 ventures from four accelerators: RED Labs, OwlSpark, RED Launch and BlueLaunch. You will be able to engage with these businesses, sign up for pre-orders, and buy products at their booths. Teams have recorded their pitches for you to learn about them in advance, watch during the event, or review afterward. RSVP now to receive updates and get early access to pitch videos, and confirm your spot at the event.

This event is Wednesday, August 2, from 5 to 8 pm at Saint Arnold Brewing Company. Click here to register.

August 3 — Side Project Society: August 2023 Meeting

Side Project Society, a community for those with technical or non-technical side projects, is hosting their monthly meeting, giving opportunities for casual networking and connecting. Guest speaker Daniel Cohen, founder of RedShift Strategists, will also share his experiences building a startup around brand positioning and content strategy.

This event is Thursday, August 3, from 6 to 8 pm at Improving. Click here to register.

August 8 — Tech + Tequila Talk - Edtech

Blue People, a software consulting services firm, is hosting a happy hour for innovators and people who are passionate about technology. Mabast Ahmad, director of technology, will discuss his experience with full stack software development and how he uses his knowledge to help entrepreneurs raised MVP.

The agenda:

5:50 pm - Sign-in and registration

6 pm - Tequila tasting

6:30 pm - Tech talk

7:00 pm - Networking and tequilas

This event is Tuesday, August 8, from 6 to 8 pm at the Ion. Click here to register.

August 10 — Executive Angel: Economic Power of Diverse Founders

Join Executive Council Network and DivInc for an informative event focused on the Economic Power of diverse Founders. Research has shown that underrepresented founders face unique challenges in accessing funding and support, which can limit their ability to scale and grow their businesses.

This event will explore the economic power of diverse founders, discussing how they are driving innovation, creating jobs, and contributing to economic growth. DivInc’s expert speakers will share their experiences and insights on the economic power of underrepresented founders, discussing topics such as how to overcome the funding gap for diverse founders, the importance of mentorship and networking, and the role of diversity and inclusion in driving innovation and growth.

The agenda:

4 to 5 pm - Welcome and networking

5 to 6 pm - Fireside chat

6 to 6:30 pm - Closing and networking

This event is Thursday, August 10, from 4 - 6:30 pm at the Ion. Click here to register.

August 10 — GROW Community Meeting

Sponsored by Green Resources & Opportunities Workforce, this community meeting is opening a discussion about green economy resources & opportunities for disadvantaged groups to engage in the energy transition and climate action.

This event is Thursday, August 10, from 11am to 1 pm at Hiram Clarke Multi-Service Center. Click here to register.

August 16-22 — Texas & Gulf Coast Science Entrepreneurs: A Guide to the Activate Fellowship 

Activate, a hardtech-focused program, recently expanded into Houston looking to build upon the region’s energy leadership with a focus on enabling a low-carbon future.

Learn about the two-year Activate Fellowship, which provides early-stage science entrepreneurs with funding, technical resources, and support from a network of scientists, engineers, technologists, and fellow entrepreneurs. Join via Zoom to get an early opportunity to learn more about the Activate Fellowship, their plans for Texas, and get your questions answered.

This online event starts Wednesday, August 16 from 11 am to noon and goes through August 22. Click here to register.

August 18 — Asian Chamber of Commerce Business Conference and Lender Matchmaking 2023

The Asian Chamber of Commerce is hosting their annual business conference, educating local business owners and entrepreneurs through resources in expanding capacity, growing operations, and building a footprint in Houston. Come listen to speakers share best practices on remaining competitive in today’s market. There will also be a lender matchmaking session administered by the SBA with over 15 approved SBA lenders for local small business owners.

The agenda:

8:30am - 9:00am Registration

9:00am - 12:00pm Business Conference

12:30pm - 3:00pm Lender Matchmaking

This event is Friday, August 18, from 8:30 am to 3 pm at Houston Community College. Click here to register.

August 28-30 — Industrial Immersive Week

The ultimate gathering of 500+ industrial, energy and engineering leaders from around the globe where the key challenges & solutions are addressed for the real-world industrial metaverse, including XR, 3D, AI, Reality Capture, Spatial Computing & Digital Twins.

The event is Monday, August 28, through Wednesday, August 30, at Omni Houston. Click here to register.

August 30 — Angel Investing in the Energy Sector

This event is sponsored by the Houston Angel Network and co-sponsored by Rice Alliance. There will be three panel sessions exploring what the energy sector needs from angel investors, including: The Greening of Conventional Oil, Gas & Power Generation; Challenges Faced by Energy Storage and Distribution; Angel Investment Considerations in the Energy Sector. There will also be four 10-minute presentations by startups in the energy sector. Admission is $100.

This event is Wednesday, August 30, from 8 am to 3 pm at Shell Auditorium. Click here to register.

August 30 — 2023 Energy Research Day

Energy Research Day will be a showcase of outstanding energy-related research by University of Houston graduate and post-doctoral students. Sponsored by the Division of Research and Graduate School, the event gives industries in the Greater Houston area a chance to see UH research up close and network with future collaborators.

This event is Wednesday, August 30, from 4 to 8 pm at the University of Houston in the Student Center South Ballroom. Click here to register.

Check out these conferences, pitch competitions, networking, and more in the month of June. Photo via Getty Images

10+ can't-miss Houston business and innovation events for June

Where to be

It's time to look at what's on the agenda for June for Houston innovators — from pitch competitions to networking events.

Here's a roundup of events not to miss this month. Mark your calendars and register accordingly.

Note: This post might be updated to add more events.


June 2 — Boost Your Brand's Online Visibility with a Book

Discover the untapped potential of self-publishing a book to establish your expertise, increase your visibility, and build your network. If you have ever considered publishing a book someday, this event is for you.

The event is Friday, June 2, from 8:30 to 10:30 am, at Impact HUB (Amegy Building - 1801 Main St 10th floor.) Click here to register.

June 2 — Best AI Tools for Business Innovation and Growth

This informative workshop is aimed at introducing participants to the latest AI tools available for businesses to innovate and grow. The interactive sessions will provide practical insights and expert advice from speakers who are experts in the field of AI. Participants will learn about the various AI tools that can be used for businesses, including machine learning, natural language processing, computer vision, and more.

The event is Friday, June 2, from 10 to 11 am, online. Click here to register.

June 7-9 — The Future of Global Energy Conference

To highlight Houston's role in the global energy transition, the Greater Houston Partnership, Houston Energy Transition Initiative, and Center for Houston's Future will host a dynamic three-day conference focusing on the role community engagement, innovation and technology, workforce, and funding play in implementing Houston's energy transition strategy.

The event is Wednesday, June 7, to Friday, June 9. The event is hybrid at various locations in Houston. Click here to register.

June 8 — Out in Tech Houston | Monthly Mixer

Out in Tech provides an inclusive networking space for LGBTQ+ people and allies working in tech. Join this relaxed, social-mixer event, hosted on the second Thursday of every month.

The event is Thursday, June 8, at 6:30 to 8:30 pm at Avant Garden. Click here to register.

June 9 — The Future of Global Energy Conference: Luncheon

The Future of Global Energy conference concludes with a gathering of experts and thought leaders, exploring the roadmap for Houston to lead the transition to an energy-abundant, low-carbon future. Panelists include:

  • Jim Gable, President, Chevron Technology Ventures
  • John Hall, President & CEO, Houston Advanced Research Center (HARC)
  • Dr. Ramanan Krishnamoorti, Chief Energy Officer, University of Houston
  • MODERATOR: Jane Stricker, Senior Vice President, Energy Transition & Executive Director, Houston Energy Transition Initiative, Greater Houston Partnership

The event is Friday, June 9, from 10 am to 3 pm, at Hilton Americas. Click here to register.

June 9-10 — Mission Innovate - Reimagining Space Technology to Solve Today’s Challenges

This summer, innovators from around the greater Houston area will convene for a two-day event to innovate, disrupt, and help design innovative solutions that can address gaps in numerous key areas. Entrepreneurs will work with licensable intellectual property from NASA’s IP portfolio to solve some of the largest problems facing the industry. Experienced and first-time founders will form teams, ideate, and pitch their ideas to renown technology entrepreneurs, including members of the innovation teams at NASA. As part of the event, teams will be taught critical startup methodologies, advised by experienced business leaders, and network with an entire community that dreams of shaping key areas in emerging technology.

The event is Thursday, June 9, to Friday, June 10, at the Cannon West Houston. Click here to register.

June 12-14 — Energy Drone & Robotics Summit

The most influential gathering of over 1,500 industrial, energy, and engineering leaders from around the globe where the key challenges and solutions are addressed for operating robotics, drones, satellites, and remote systems successfully and managing AI/data, from the stars to the sea floor.

The event is Monday, June 12, to Wednesday, June 14, at Woodlands Waterway Marriott & Convention Center. Click here to register.

June 13 — Investor Studio Series: VC Due Diligence Best Practices

During this event, Golden Section, a venture capital fund and founders studio obsessed with B2B SaaS product development, will discuss how VCs approach investing and conduct due diligence, and why this matters for founders. The presentation will cover:

  • Market changes that effect how VCs approach investing
  • What founders need to prepare for this new environment
  • How Golden Section approaches due diligence

The event is Tuesday, June 13, from 4 to 6 pm, at the Ion. Click here to register.

June 13 — Using ChatGPT to Grow Your Business

Learn how to harness the power of artificial intelligence and use ChatGPT to not only stay ahead of the game but to redefine it. Whether it's handling queries, managing customer relationships, or generating leads, AI can automate and enhance many aspects of your work. This session will guide attendees through the fascinating world of AI and show them how to leverage it for maximum results.

The event is Tuesday, June 13, from 11 am to 1 pm, at Amcap Mortgage. Click here to register.

June 15 — Female Founders and Funders Meetup

Monthly, every third Thursday, Softeq Venture Studio and Sesh Coworking invite all rockstar female founders and funders in the Houston area to network and empower each other.

The event is Thursday, June 15, from 9 to 10 am, at Sesh Coworking. Click here to register.

June 20 — Bayou City Startups June Happy Hour

Unwind and reconnect with your favorite (or soon to be) Houston startup founders, funders, operators, and supporters. This month, InnovationMap and the newly launched EnergyCapitalHTX are partnering with Bayou City Startups as a co-host of the event.

The event is Tuesday, June 20, from 5 to 7 pm, location TBD. Click to register.

June 20 — Co-Creating the Future: An African Startup Symposium on Collaboration

This physical symposium explores opportunities for cross-border entrepreneurial collaboration between the US/Houston and Africa. From Idea to Impact, delving into the African startup ecosystem, highlighting growth and potential for cross-border collaboration, key sectors driving innovation and growth, and legal, regulatory, and cultural considerations and challenges for cross-border collaborations. Startups and investment opportunities will be showcased.

The Agenda:

6:00 pm - 6:10 pm - Introduction to the event and The Beta Collective
6:15 pm - 6:20 pm - Sponsors Highlight
6:20 pm - 6:35 pm - Startup showcase
6:35 pm - 6:40 pm - Panel Introduction
6:40 pm- 7:30 pm - Panel
7:30 - 7:50 pm - Q&A
7:50 - 8:00 pm- Closing and Thanks
8:00 - 8:30 pm - Strategic Networking

The event is Tuesday, June 20, from 6 to 8:30 pm, at The Ion. Click to register.

June 22 — Ultrasound. Integrated. Everywhere.

Pump & Pipes is hosting an event focused on thin-film ultrasound technologies from energy applications into aerospace, health, and medtech sectors.

In collaboration with NASA Tech Talks, and the Mingle Monday Health & MedTech series at The Ion, join Pumps & Pipes as they venture into a discussion on the use of ultrasound technologies from both terrestrial and space medicine perspectives.

The event is Thursday, June 22, from 6 to 9 pm, at the Ion. Click here to register.

June 28 — June Transition On Tap

Transition On Tap is Greentown Labs' monthly networking event devoted to fostering conversations and connections among the climate and energy transition ecosystem in Houston and beyond. Entrepreneurs, investors, students, and friends of climatetech are invited to attend, meet colleagues, discuss solutions, and engage with our growing community. If you’re looking for a job in climatetech or energy, trying to expand your network, or perhaps thinking about starting your own energy-related company, this is the event for you.

The event is Wednesday, June 28, from 5:30 to 7:30 pm, at the Ion. Click here to register.

Check out this curated list of innovation events in Houston for February. Photo via Getty Images

10 can't-miss Houston business and innovation events for February

where to be

It's time to look at what's on the agenda for February for Houston innovators — from pitch competitions to networking events.

Here's a roundup of events not to miss this month. Mark your calendars and register accordingly.

Note: This post might be updated to add more events.

Feb. 8 — Digital Marketing Luncheon

Join Insperity, a partner of The Cannon, and digital marketing expert, Danny Gavin, at The Cannon Downtown for a lunch and learn.

The event is Wednesday, February 8, at noon, at The Cannon Downtown. Click here to register.

Feb. 9 — Innovation on Tap: Fred Higgs, Engineering at Rice University

Discuss research in the speaker’s engineering lab at Rice University on key Industry 4.0 technologies, namely additive manufacturing.

The event is Thursday, February 9, at 4 pm, at the Ion. Click here to register.

February 10 — Women in Leadership Conference 

The 23rd annual Women in Leadership Conference will be held in-person at Rice University. The conference has been a beacon of inspiration in the Houston community, empowering women to accomplish their career goals. In panel discussions and interactive workshops, attendees hear from leaders across different industries, explore various approaches to leadership, and discuss future opportunities for success.

The event is Friday, February 10, at 8 am, at McNair Hall at Rice University. Click here to register.

Feb. 15 — Real Talk from Real VCs

Join this event for a candid fireside chat on venture capital and its role in supporting and growing innovative startups.

The event is Wednesday, February 15, at 5:30 pm, at the Ion. Click here to register.

Feb. 16 — Engage VC: Lerer Hippeau

Lerer Hippeau is an early-stage venture capital firm founded and operated in New York City. Since 2010, they have invested in entrepreneurs who embody audacity, endurance, and winning mindset – good people with great ideas who aren't afraid to do hard things. Join the HX Venture Fund to hear Caitlin Strandberg, Partner at Lerer Hippeau discuss her perspective on how to build and scale a great company, what early-stage investors are looking for, why Houston, and market trends among other topics.

The event is Thursday, February 16, at 8:30 am, at the Ion. Click here to register.

Feb. 16 — Female Founders and Funders

Calling all rockstar female founders and investors in the Houston area. Mark your calendars for this month's Female Founders and Funders meetup. Coffee and breakfast is provided and the event is free to attend.

The event is Thursday, February 16, at 9 am, at Sesh Coworking. Click here to register.

Feb. 21 — Web3 & HOU: Demystifying the Web3 Space Panel I

Join us to learn more about Web3 and its numerous applications.

The event is Tuesday, February 21, at 6 pm, at the Ion. Click here to register.

Feb. 22 — The Trailblazer’s Guide to Cultivating Authenticity

In this fun and interactive workshop presented by Erica D’Eramo of Two Peirs Consulting, we’ll look at how to foster a leadership style that works for you, even in the absence of role models.

The event is Wednesday, February 22, at 2 pm, at Sesh Coworking. Click here to register.

Feb. 22 — Houston Startup Showcase

The Houston Startup Showcase is a year-long series of monthly pitch competitions. Founders will pitch at the Ion and compete for the grand prize package. Watch the startups pitch their company and see who the judges will name the champion of the Houston Startup Showcase 2023.

The event is Wednesday, February 22, at 6 pm, at the Ion. Click here to register.

Feb. 23 — Navigating Innovation in the Corporate World

Join us for a fireside chat with leaders from Houston's largest employers, including Microsoft and Chevron to discuss how they have navigated successful careers in technology and innovation.

The event is Thursday, February 23, at 11:30 am, at the Ion. Click here to register.

Feb. 27-March 2 — Houston Tech Rodeo

The Houston Tech Rodeo is a conference showcasing the best and brightest of the Houston startup community in the region and beyond by putting investors, entrepreneurs, industry leaders, and creative minds in a room to talk about the biggest innovations and the future of tech sandwiched by some happy hours and friendly competition.

The events run Monday, February 27, through Thursday, March 2, at various locations in Houston. Click here to register.

Note: This post might be updated to add more events.


Check out these conferences, pitch competitions, networking, and more in the month of November. Photo via Getty Images

10+ can't-miss Houston business and innovation events for November

Where to be

Hold onto your hats, Houston. If you thought October was a busy month for business events, November even more exciting and full of pitches, conferences, summits, and more. Here's a rundown of what all to throw on your calendar for November when it comes to innovation-related events.

This article will be updated as more business and tech events are announced.

FEATURED: November 9 — Houston Innovation Awards Gala

Find out what Houston startups and innovators go home with the big win at InnovationMap and Houston Exponential's gala. Learn more about this year's finalists by clicking here.

The event is Wednesday, November 9, at 6 pm, at the Ion. Click here to register.

November 1-3 — Urban Manufacturing Alliance's Houston Gathering

Learn about the unique challenges and opportunities within manufacturing in the current economy, as well as network with Houston manufacturing professionals.

The event is Tuesday, November 1, to Wednesday, November 3, at West Houston Institute. Click here to register.

November 2 — Greentown Labs Climatetech Summit

Hear from the climatetech industry's leaders at Greentown Labs' annual event. The morning features panels and pitches, followed by lunch, networking, and an expo. The summit continues on November 3 in Boston, and both days will be streamed for viewers.

The event is Wednesday, November 2, at 8 am, at Greentown Houston and streaming online. Click here to register.

November 4 — Enventure's 10-Year Anniversary

Join Enventure as we celebrate its 10th Anniversary — from the organization's accomplishments to a look toward what the future brings to Enventure.

The event is Friday, November 4, at 7 pm, at III by Wolfgang Puck. Click here to register.

November 5 — Tech Fest Live in-person Experience at the Ion

The Ion as partnered with Tech Fest Live to bring your family to an engaging Family Tech Day experience, designed with middle and high school students in mind.

The event is Saturday, November 5, at 9:30 am, at the Ion. Click here to register.

November 8 — Texas Life Science Forum

The Texas Life Science Forum, co-hosted by BioHouston and Rice Alliance, is the premier life science and healthtech event in Texas that brings together members from industry, emerging life science companies, academic and investors. Hear pitches from innovative and early stage life science companies, network and enjoy exciting panels, keynotes and speakers.

The event is Tuesday, November 8, at 8:30 am, at Rice University. Click here to register.

November 9 — The Future of Industrial Automation Lunch & Learn with Yokogawa

In this Lunch & Learn, Elbert van der Bijl (Director of Marketing & Solutions Consulting for Yokogawa North America), will talk about the journey from industrial automation to industrial autonomy (IA2IA). He will also speak about how new technologies are being embraced to be able to make this transition. The presentation will highlight some key developments like Open Process Automation (OPA), Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML), and mobile Robotics and how they will play a role in the future of Industrial Automation.

The event is Wednesday, November 9, at 11:30 am, at The Cannon-West Houston. Click here to register.

November 10 — Greater Houston Partnership's State of the Port

Join the Greater Houston Partnership at the annual State of the Port featuring Ric Campo, Chairman of the Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority. Campo will discuss innovations taking place at Port Houston and Project 11. The highly anticipated Project 11 will deepen and widen the Houston Ship Channel and increase economic impact, jobs and address supply chain challenges.

The event is Thursday, November 10, at 10:30 am, at The Omni Riverway. Click here to register.

November 10 — BGV Pitch Tour Houston

The BGV Pitch Tour is coming to Houston November 10th in partnership with Omaze and the aid of our amazing 6 Change Agents to throw a BGV Pitch Competition. Thee BGV Change Agents are amazing Black and/or Brown women-identifying founders who are actively working to uplift and grow the city's ecosystem for Black and Brown founders in their area.

The event is Thursday, November 10, at 6 pm, at The Cannon-West Houston. Click here to register.

November 15 — Lilie's Community Celebration

Celebrate the end of the semester and take a peek into what all the Liu Idea Lab for Innovation and Entrepreneurship community has going on.

The event is Tuesday, November 15, at 6 pm, at the Lilie offices at Rice University. Click here to register.

November 17 — Rice Alliance Clean Energy Accelerator 2022 Demo Day

Rice Alliance Clean Energy Accelerator is hosting a Demo Day to showcase its Class 2 startups who are ready for investment, pilots and accelerating the energy transition.

The event is Thursday, November 17, at 1:30 pm, at the Ion. Click here to register.

November 19 — Pearland Innovation Hub Pitch Competition

Come attend this event open to the community to hear pitches from local small business owners, network, and learn about the Pearland Innovation Hub.

The event is Tuesday, November 17, at 4 pm, at Pearland City Hall. Click here to register.

November 30 — Commercial ZEV Event

This event by Houston-based Evolve is your chance to drive zero-emissions commercial vehicles and learn how you can convert your fleet to save on costs.

The event is Wednesday, November 30, at 8:30 am to 5 pm, at NRG Park. Click here to register.

Here's your one-stop shop for innovation events in Houston this month. Photo via Getty Images

10+ can't-miss Houston business and innovation events for February

where to be

It's a new month, which calls for a new round up of must-attend events. In this batch of in-person and online innovation events, you can check out details on a women-focused conference at Rice University, a pitch competition, educational workshops, and more.

This article will be updated as more business and tech events are announced.

Feb. 3 — The Realities of Raising Capital

WeWork and Republic will host an interactive panel discussion that's event is open to the public and features a discussion with local entrepreneurs and Mikaela Giani, senior investment associate at Republic on their experiences raising capital. This event is part of the newly launched “Let’s Talk Deals” event series from WeWork and Republic focusing on a 2-way conversation between start-up Founders and Venture Capital Investors to understand founders' funding experience, investors' expectations, and what areas need to be improved for both sides to capture foregone opportunities.

The event is on Thursday, February 3, at 4:30 pm. It's free and happening at WeWork (708 Main St, 10th Floor). Click here to register.

Feb. 8 — TEDxBaylorCollegeofMedicine: Reboot, Reframe, ReImagine

The Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy will host Baylor College of Medicine’s first ever TEDx event. TEDxBaylorCollegeofMedicine is dedicated to bringing together leading thinkers and doers to share ideas across many disciplines – technology, entertainment, design, science, humanities, business and development. Our aim is to build a meaningful connection between the work at Baylor and the people we serve in the community and share inspirational stories of how our community is improving health through science, scholarship and innovation.

The event is on Tuesday, February 8, at 7 pm. It's free and happening online. Click here to register.

Feb. 9 — Code for Houston's Open Project Night: Reduced Inequalities Edition

Impact Hub Houston invites you to connect and collaborate with passionate people who are working on projects, ventures, and collaborations to improve the City of Houston. Open Project Night has been hosted across the Impact Hub global network for a few years, and we are carrying the torch locally to support problem solvers, connectors, and leaders in their efforts to create the change they wish to see in the world.

The event is on Thursday, February 9, at 5:30 pm. It's free and happening online. Click here to register.

Feb. 10 — Digitization of Industrial Diagrams through AI & Computer Vision

DataSeer will introduce the problem of extracting data trapped in legacy technical diagrams and explain how recent technologies in computer vision and machine learning can help automate and accelerate manual effort that’s currently done today.

The event is on Thursday, February 10, at 9 am. It's free and happening online. Click here to register.

Feb. 10 — IDDD Round Table Workshop: Developing Therapeutics for Neurodegenerative Diseases

This workshop will feature presentations from Jim Ray, PhD, MD Anderson Cancer Center and Zachary Sweeney, PhD, CEO, Interline Therapeutics. You will have the opportunity on the registration site to submit questions in advance that may be addressed in the 30-minute round table discussion portion of the workshop. There is a virtual registration option if you prefer to join by zoom.

The event is on Thursday, February 10, at 3:30 pm. It's free and happening at Rice (6500 Main St, Room 1003). Click here to register.

Feb. 11 — Women in Leadership Conference

The 22nd annual conference has been a beacon of inspiration in the Houston community, empowering women to accomplish their career goals. In panel discussions and interactive workshops, attendees hear from leaders across different industries, explore various approaches to leadership, and discuss future opportunities for success.

The event is on Friday, February 11, from 8:15 am to 5 pm. Registration is $120 (code HOU22 for 10 percent off). It's happening at McNair Hall at Rice University. Click here to register.

Feb. 16 — Engage VC: Greycroft

Managing nearly $2B across 400 portfolio companies, including 25 unicorns, Greycroft is viewed as a top VC in the nation. And they are coming to Houston. Join HX Venture Fund at the Ion to hear Brentt Baltimore, principal at Greycroft, and Andrea Course, venture principal at Shell Ventures, discuss Greycroft's perspective on ESG, circular economy, sustainability, and how Houston fits in.

The event is on Wednesday, February 16, from 8:30 to 11 am. It's free and happening at The Ion (4501 Main St.). Click here to register.

Feb. 17 — Microsoft Excel Training with Docmo

Lee Gilley, founder of Docmo and member of The Cannon, is hosting an excel training in the classroom at The Cannon West Houston. Anyone can drop in at any time. In the first half of the event, Lee will cover a few Excel topics, and in the second half there will be a Q&A format so please bring a problem you’re currently working on.

The event is on Thursday, February 17, at 3:30 pm. It's free and happening at The Cannon West Houston Event Space (1334 Brittmoore Rd). Click here to register.

Feb. 17 — Transition on Tap: Reflections and Lessons From the Texas Freeze

In this year’s first Transition On Tap, Greentown Labs will sit down with Houston energy industry experts as they talk about their firsthand experience with the freeze, what steps have been taken in the last year to strengthen the grid, and the role climatetech innovation can play to create more resilient energy infrastructure.

The event is on Thursday, February 17, at 5 pm. It's free and happening online. Click here to register.

Feb. 23 — Houston Startup Showcase

The Houston Startup Showcase is a year-long series of monthly pitch competitions. Founders will pitch and compete for the grand prize package. Watch the startups pitch their company and see who the judges will name the champion of Houston Startup Showcase 2022.

The event is on Wednesday, February 23, at 6 pm. It's free and happening at Ion Houston (4201 Main St). Click here to register.

Feb. 24 — Texas Life Science Forum

Join Rice Alliance and BioHouston for the 10th Annual Texas Life Science Forum on to hear from luminaries in the life science innovation, commercialization, and entrepreneurship community. The day-long conference is an opportunity to see promising life science companies, meet investors and venture capitalists, learn about the latest developments in the Texas life science entrepreneurial ecosystem and research institutions, attend the educational symposium, and network with the community.

The event is on Thursday, February 24, from 8:30 am to 5 pm. Registration is $225, and the event happening at Rice University (6100 Main St). Click here to register.

Feb. 24 — EnergyTech University Prize Collegiate Competition

Sponsored by the Office of Technology Transitions at the U.S. Department of Energy, the EnergyTech University Prize is a collegiate competition challenging multidisciplinary student teams to develop and present a business plan that leverages lab-developed and other high-potential energy technologies. Student teams compete for a total of $250,000 in cash prizes as they explore business opportunities for lab-developed or other high-potential energy technologies, assess commercialization opportunities through market analysis, and present a viable business plan to industry judges. Throughout the competition, they receive mentorship and materials to help them succeed.

The event is on Thursday, February 24, at 3 pm. It's free and happening at Greentown Labs (4200 San Jacinto St). Click here to register.

Feb. 27 to March 5 — Houston Tech Rodeo Roadshow

Houston Tech Rodeo is back — and this time it's a roadshow. The week of events will set up saloons down Main Street and each day will host two 3-4 hour sessions on various innovation topics, as well as coffee networking in the mornings and evening happy hours for further connecting opportunities.

The week of events begins Sunday, February 27, and goes through Saturday, March 5. It's free and happening in downtown Houston. Click here to register.

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Annual student startup competition in Houston names teams for 2024

ready to pitch

The Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship announced the 42 student-led teams worldwide that will compete in the highly competitive Rice Business Plan Competition this spring.

The annual competition, known as one of the world’s largest and richest intercollegiate student startup competitions, will take place April 4 to 6 in Houston. Teams in this year's competition represent 35 universities from four countries, including two teams from Houston and four others from Texas.

Teams, made up of graduate students from a college or university anywhere in the world, will present their plans before 350 angel, venture capital, and corporate investors to compete for more than $1 million in prizes. Last year, teams were awarded $3.4 million in investment and in-kind prizes, the largest total awarded thus far in the decades-old competition after some investors doubled — or even tripled — down on investment awards.

The 2024 RBPC will focus on five categories: Energy, Cleantech and Sustainability; Hard Tech; Life Sciences and Healthcare Solutions; Digital Enterprise; Consumer Products and Services.

Invitees include:

  • AIRS ML, Imperial College London (United Kingdom)
  • Blaze Power, UCLA
  • ChiChi Foods, Washington University in St. Louis
  • CureWave Sciences, Rutgers University
  • CurveAssure, Johns Hopkins University
  • D.Sole, Carnegie Mellon University
  • Dendritic Health AI, Northwestern University
  • Dialysis Innovations, University of Michigan
  • FlowCellutions, University of Pittsburgh
  • HEXAspec, Rice University
  • HydroPhos Solutions, University of New Hampshire
  • Icorium Engineering Company, University of Kansas
  • Informuta, Tulane University
  • Kiwi Charge, York University (Canada)
  • Korion Health, University of Maryland, College Park
  • Limitless Aeronautics, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University
  • LiQuidium, University of Houston
  • Malleous, University of Pittsburgh
  • MesaQuantum, Harvard University
  • MineMe, University of Pennsylvania
  • NaviAI, Cornell University
  • NutriAI, Tufts University
  • OSPHIM, RWTH Aachen University (Germany)
  • Overture Games, Northwestern University
  • OX SOX, University of Georgia
  • Oxylus Energy, Yale University
  • Palanquin Power, University of Texas at Austin
  • Paradigm Robotics, University of Texas at Austin
  • Particle-N, University of Connecticut
  • Poka Labs, Harvard University
  • Power2Polymer, RWTH Aachen University (Germany)
  • ProPika, University of Arkansas
  • Protein Pints, Michigan State University
  • Samtracs, Oklahoma State University
  • Sancorda Medical, University of Texas at Dallas
  • Side Coach Sports, Baylor University
  • Socian AI, Rochester Institute of Technology
  • Somnair, Johns Hopkins University
  • TouchStone, University of California, Berkeley
  • Vita Innovations, Stanford University
  • WattShift, University of Chicago
  • ZebraMD, UCLA

The companies join more than 700 RBPC alumns that have collectively raised more than $5.5 billion in funding. More than 269 RBPC companies are in business or have made successful exits, according to the Rice Alliance's website.

Last year, Texas A&M-based team FluxWorks took home $350,000 and won the competition based on judges scores. The company's technology includes magnetic gears that are four times quieter than standard with 99 percent efficiency.

Sygne Solutions and TierraClimate, two Rice-led teams, won second and fourth places, respectively. Zaymo, from Brigham Young University, took home the most in investment dollars. Click here to see the full list of 2023 teams.

Texas is the No. 1 destination for Gen Zers on the move, study says

by the numbers

A new population analysis by real estate marketplace Zillow has pegged the Lone Star State as the No. 1 destination for adults born between 1996 and 2004 – also known as Gen Z.

Using data from the 2022 U.S. Census Bureau, the report identifies the Top 10 states to which Gen Zers are moving, and Texas was the runaway winner – far outranking No. 2 destination, California, with 76,805 Gen Z movers, versus California's 43,913.

Reasons for moving vary, but the report says young adults from 18 to 24 years old may prefer to live in states with high performing job markets, especially in a place like San Antonio where one of the nation's top employers resides. San Antonio is also a great place for remote work, according to estimations by Forbes.

Favorable weather also may play a factor in the high migration of Gen Z'ers, the report suggests. Texas' mostly year-round sunshine makes it more attractive to younger crowds who are looking for fun activities around the state, not to mention the advantageous impact on dating opportunities.

Other top states with high influx of Gen Z movers include Washington (No. 5), which added over 33,500 Gen Z movers in 2022, and Colorado (No. 6) with less than 31,000 new Gen Z residents.

Their least favorite destination was Michigan, and the Northeast also ranked poorly, with four New England states – Vermont, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, and Maine – all in the bottom 10.

State with a high cost-of-living like Washington, Colorado, and Virginia (No. 7) are places where young adults are more likely to have a bachelor's degree, work in tech, or serve in the military, according to Zillow principal population scientist Edward Berchick.

However, becoming a homeowner is much more difficult, as the report found 77 percent of the Gen Z workers in these states are renters.

"Gen Z movers are likely drawn to the job opportunities in these states, despite the higher costs of housing," Berchick explains. "They may also be in a stage of life where they're willing and able to be flexible in their standards of living while starting their careers."

The top 10 states for Gen Z movers are:

  • No. 1 – Texas
  • No. 2 – California
  • No. 3 – Florida
  • No. 4 – North Carolina
  • No. 5 – Washington
  • No. 6 – Colorado
  • No. 7 – Virginia
  • No. 8 – Illinois
  • No. 9 – Georgia
  • No. 10 – Arizona

The full report can be found on zillow.mediaroom.com.

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This article originally ran on CultureMap.

Op-Ed: Black-owned businesses are making history in Texas, across America

guest column

In recent years, our small business community has weathered a global pandemic, persistent supply chain issues, sometimes volatile prices, and a tight labor market—and Black-owned businesses in our state have faced disproportionate impacts from these pandemic challenges.

Despite those headwinds, Black-owned businesses across Texas are fueling one of the largest and most diverse waves of new business creation America has ever seen—what President Biden calls America’s Small Business Boom.

As we mark America’s 48th national celebration of Black History Month, the SBA is highlighting Black-owned businesses’ achievements here in Texas and throughout the nation. The past three years have been the three strongest years of new business formation in American history.

The 16 million new business applications filed during this period show Americans starting businesses at nearly twice the rate—86 percent faster—compared to the pre-2021 average. During that time, U.S. small businesses have created more than 7.2 million net new jobs. And Black-owned businesses are responsible for some of the most significant gains.

The Invest in America agenda is powering the Biden Small Business Boom, and unlike many economic recoveries of the past, this one includes entrepreneurs of color. One of the reasons for that is the SBA’s Community Navigator Pilot Program (CNPP). This innovative hub-and-spoke partnership connected hundreds of community organizations around the country - like the U.S. Black Chambers of Commerce and the National Urban League - with entrepreneurs, helping them make the most of SBA resources. “The SBA CNPP allowed the

Houston Area Urban League Entrepreneurship Center to leverage existing partnerships with organizations that offered services to socially and economically disadvantaged business owners and women-owned businesses,” states Eric Goodie, Executive Vice President of the Houston Area Urban League. “Through the CNPP we provided comprehensive business planning and support, e-commerce technical assistance, financial and credit education, opportunities for business networking, access to capital and procurement opportunities,while providing assistance with obtaining various business certifications. We also found theSBA Lender match portal to be a critical resource in the capital acquisition process."

Under Administrator Isabel Guzman, the SBA has also delivered record-breaking government contracting for small businesses—including the most federal contracting dollars going to Black-owned businesses in history. And we’re addressing longstanding gaps in access to capital for Black entrepreneurs, more than doubling our small business loans toBlack-owned businesses since 2020.

These investments are making a big impact. Black business ownership is growing at the fastest pace in 30 years. The share of Black households owning a business doubled between 2019 and 2022. In 2023 alone, Census data showed Americans filed 5.5 million new business applications across the country, including over 500,000 here in Texas. That success is creating a rising tide. Black wealth is up a record 60 percent from before the pandemic, and Black unemployment has reached historic lows since 2021.

The SBA also understands that the work must continue. Black entrepreneurs and other historically underserved communities still face obstacles accessing capital. That's why President Biden and the SBA are committed to ensuring that anyone with a good idea can pursue that opportunity, and the Small Business Boom speaks to that success. We're helping more Americans than ever access the funds they need to realize their dreams of small business ownership – and that means more jobs, more goods and services, and more resilient communities, no matter the zip code.

To learn more about SBA resources, entrepreneurs are invited to join the SBA Houston District Office as it teams up with the Emancipation Economic Development Council and dynamic community organizations to celebrate Black History Month. The organizations will host the Resources to Empower Entrepreneurs event at the Emancipation Cultural Center on Wednesday, February 28, and will feature discussions surrounding resources, funding, and training available for small business owners.

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Mark Winchester is the SBA Houston District Office's acting district director.