Women 2.0's City of the Month: Chicago

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Get to know the Chicago tech scene as told by the team members of Women 2.0 City Meetup Chicago. 

By The Chicago Women 2.0 City Meetup Team

 

Each month we will be featuring one of the 20 innovative cities that our City Meetups are located. April marks the first month of this series and we're excited to kick it off with the great city of Chicago. Our teams will answer a Q&A to help us better understand the tech scene there, comment on recent tech news in that city, share what major tech companies are sourced out of the region and what makes their tech community unique.  We asked the team some questions about the Chicago tech scene, here's what they had to say:

 

1. What makes the tech scene in Chicago unique?

Chicago's tech scene is unique in that it is a community of hard-working, humble, and pragmatic individuals supported by strong tech talent from local universities. Chicago entrepreneurs are tenacious and practical builders who are looking to create sustainable businesses for the community that solve problems, rather than get enticed by multimillion sky-high valuations. Moreover, Chicago also has a culture of paying-it-forward with the token Midwestern friendliness, as successful entrepreneurs are always willing to help out and mentor upcoming founders.

2. What are some of the best co-working spaces in Chicago?
  • 1871
  • Catapult Chicago
  • Workspring, NextDoor
  • TechNexus
  • Spirtle Space
  • NextSpace
  • The Warehouse
3. What are your thoughts on Chicago 1871 opening a new family-friendly incubator?

We are thrilled that Chicago is supporting more females in entrepreneurship and technology through the new family-friendly incubator. We hope that this will encourage more women to enter the Chicago entrepreneurial scene and tap into a new pool of talent. The opening of 1871 incited entrepreneurship and innovation in the Chicago tech scene and we look forward to this incubator making a similar impact in the fem-tech community.

4. What are three tech companies that are based in Chicago that you admire and why?

1) Braintree: Braintree helped put Chicago on the tech map in the competitive payments industry. We admire Braintree as it actively seeks to promote the Chicago tech scene and is an engineering-heavy company with products catered to both developers (through its payment platform) and consumers (through Venmo).

2) GrubHub: Grubhub is a leader in the food-tech-delivery industry which was founded and built in Chicago over the past 10 years. It is the latest Chicago success story having recently merged with Seamless and filing for an IPO.

3) Basecamp: Formerly known as 37signals, the web application development company that makes collaboration easier, embodies Chicago's tech mentality through its well-respected founder, Jason Fried, and mission to keep products highly functional and simple.

RSVP to Women 2.0 City Meetup Chicago here. RSVP to Women 2.0 City Meetup in other cities here.

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JULEAH SZOPO

Team Lead, Event Moderator

jessicJESSICA BECHTEL

Marketing Lead









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RUCHI KUMAR

Speaker Coordinator

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ANUSHA STHANUNATHAN

Speaker Coordinator

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RACHEL LACONTI

Venue/Host Coordinator

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CLAIRE SCHLAFLY

Volunteer Coordinator/Moderator