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Entrepreneurship Week gears up this weekend

Global Entrepreneurship Week is here again, and Albuquerque has planned a broad slate of startup-related events and activities in the Downtown Innovation District to run through next weekend.

The annual event, which takes place in cities throughout the U.S. and other countries, aims to celebrate technology, innovation and entrepreneurship with workshops, networking events, startup pitch competitions and more (see below for a listing).

It’s the second year in a row that Albuquerque is participating as a “host city,” said Albuquerque Economic Development Director Gary Oppedahl.

“We’ve been designated as one of the top cities where entrepreneurship is being celebrated with good, quality events that embrace startup innovation and provide opportunities for community involvement,” Oppedahl said. “One key to successful startup communities is to have a constant schedule of events to connect people through get-togethers, meetings and more. It allows people to become more aware of each other, learn about what others are doing, share ideas, get support and build partnerships.”

The events aim to reach a variety of aspiring and existing entrepreneurs, Oppedahl said. That includes people pursuing business ventures on their own, Main Street establishments in retail or service industries, firms looking to expand beyond New Mexico to national and international markets and businesses with high-growth potential.

“We want to focus on all types of businesses, and we want to include under-represented and disadvantaged groups as much as possible,” Oppedahl said.

The week’s activities will kick off this afternoon with InnovateHER — a pitch competition for startups promoting products and services that have a positive impact on women and families. The companies will compete for cash prizes and an opportunity to pitch at a national InnovateHER event where up to $70,000 in prizes will be awarded.

InnovateHER will be followed by Startup Weekend events that will take place simultaneously in Albuquerque, Las Cruces and Santa Fe. Those events offer a three-day boot camp for anyone with a startup idea to work with like-minded individuals to test and develop their proposed products and services with mentoring and feedback from investors and experienced entrepreneurs.

The three events will be linked together online.

“It will be the first-ever statewide event,” said Sean O’Shea, program director at the Santa Fe Business Incubator. “We’re creating a new model in New Mexico that other states could adopt and use.”

Other events include the mayor’s state of the city address and a community celebration at the Epicenter Downtown on Tuesday, a workshop on angel investment and a women entrepreneurs’ networking event on Wednesday, and a “Be Your Own Boss” workshop on Friday.

The week’s activities will build on the grassroots surge in entrepreneurship and innovation underway in Albuquerque, said Lisa Adkins, director of the FatPipe business incubator Downtown.

“The more activities we have promoting entrepreneurship the better,” Adkins said. “We’ll see more people willing and able to start companies thanks to all the support they’re receiving.”


The following is a list of events prepared by the city’s Economic Development Department:

6:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 13 – 8 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 15: Startup Weekend ABQ at FatPipe ABQ, 200 Broadway Blvd. NE, and at Epicenter @ Innovate ABQ, Broadway and Central

Startup Weekend ABQ is be part of a statewide event in partnership with Startup Weekend events in Farmington, Las Cruces and Santa Fe. To help exercise our local innovation district, this event is being conducted across two locations: It will start Friday night at the Epicenter for mixing, mingling, pitching and forming teams. Most of Saturday and Sunday will be spent at FatPipe ABQ building minimum viable products with those teams and validating assumptions. When startup pitches are ready to be shared with the world, the event will return to Epicenter for final pitches and judging.
For event details, visit albuquerque.up.coNov. 13, 8-10 a.m.: STC & UNM Innovation Academy Pitch Competition Final Round & Reception, Atrium @ 800 Bradbury Drive SE, UNM Science & Technology Park
Winners will be announced.Finalists receive caching from UNM’s Innovation Academy, and Top 5 teams win $2,500.

Nov. 13, 3:30-6 p.m.: InnovateHER ABQ Cocktail Party at Matanza Craft Beer Kitchen, 3225 Central NE

New Mexico Community Capital and CNM are partnering to search for new and “commercializable” products or services that will have a measurable impact on the lives of women and families, with a live pitch event where finalists will compete for up to $70,000 in cash prizes.

The top three finalists will show off their winning products or services at Matanza Craft Beer Kitchen on this date.
RSVP to attend to

9 a.m.-3 p.m. Nov. 13 & 10 a.m-2 p.m. Nov. 14: Discovery Festival, Albuquerque Convention Center
A variety of booths will be demonstrating STEM activities in creative and inspiring ways. This event is a fun way for local companies and organizations to introduce STEM- based careers and education paths to children. Many have an aptitude in the sciences and related fields but have not yet discovered their talents. There will also be a focus on matching STEM professionals with interested youth in a Big Brothers Big Sisters mentoring relationship. Proceeds from this event will help fund the STEM Mentoring program and will provide scholarships to youth who qualify.

Nov 17, 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m.: Mayor Richard Berry’s State of the City address, Embassy Suites, 1000 Woodward Place NE
Hosted by the Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce, networking will be from 11 a.m. to noon, with the lunch and address from noon to 1:30 p.m.
Requires ticket and registration. Visit

Nov. 17, 3-5 p.m.: Sandia Entrepreneur Office Hours, National Museum of Nuclear Science & History, 601 Eubank Blvd.

Nov. 17, 5:30-8 p.m.: Community Celebration of Entrepreneurship at Epicenter @ Innovate ABQ, Broadway and Central
Mayor’s Challenge Prize for Entrepreneurship will be announced.
Celebrate Albuquerque’s emergence as one of the top U.S. cities for entrepreneurship during this special recognition event.
Mayor’s Prize powered by the Albuquerque Community Foundation.
Tickets limited. Visit for more information.

Nov. 18, 4:30-8 p.m: Village Capital Venture Forum: Water US 2015, Epicenter @ Innovate ABQ, 199 Broadway Blvd. NE
FREE with registration at
Join Village Capital for its annual Venture Forum showcasing 12 enterprises that are addressing and solving real world water issues. The Venture Forum is the culminating event of a four-month workshop and an exciting opportunity to meet face-to-face with the next generation of entrepreneurs. The afternoon will feature pitches from the 12 early-stage ventures in the VilCap Water US 2015 program and will include an audience of investors, mentors, potential customers, and members of the greater startup community. The forum will be followed by a reception (6:30 – 8 p.m.) that includes live music, appetizers and drinks for all attendees.

Nov. 18, 9-10 a.m.: 1 Million Cups, FatPipe ABQ, 200 Broadway Blvd. NE
Special GEW edition of this weekly event, where two local entrepreneurs give presentations on their companies, receiving constructive feedback and questions from the audience.

Nov. 18, 10:30-noon: New Mexico Angels Investment Workshop, FatPipe ABQ, 200 Broadway Blvd. NE

Nov. 18, 2-3 p.m.: ABQid Speaker Series, ABQid, Verge Building, 317 Commercial St. NE
Speaker to be announced.

Nov. 18, 3-5 p.m.: Entrepreneur Office Hours, ABQid, Verge Building, 317 Commercial St. NE

Nov. 18, 3-5 p.m.: Innovation Academy Startup School, FatPipe ABQ, 200 Broadway Blvd. NE
StartUp School is designed to be an “entrepreneurial literacy program” for UNM-affiliated individuals interested in starting their own business or developing a product. The program is flexible to allow “drop-ins” for one session or all the sessions.
The topic on this day will be Team Formation, presented by Mike Silva of Rude Boy Cookies/ABQ Trolley Co.
For more information, visit

Nov. 18, 5:30-8 p.m.: Well Woman Drinks GEW Networking Event with WESST Enterprise Center, 609 Broadway Blvd. NE
A supportive social gathering for women to connect and share challenges and successes as leaders, entrepreneurs, mothers, daughters, etc. Who should attend? Women doing something innovative to make a difference in her life or in the lives of others.
For tickets:

Nov. 18, 5:30-7 p.m.: Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce presents Jingle Mingle, Exhib-it, 6207 Pan American Fwy NE
FREE; RSVP in advance required at
Annual networking event that attracts more than 250 of New Mexico’s premiere businesses and business professionals. Food catered by Garcia’s Kitchen, as well as wine, beer and other beverages.

Nov. 19, 9-11 a.m.: South Valley Economic Development Center Community Showcase, 318 Isleta Blvd.
This event will celebrate Tazo (the nation’s only Spanish version of 1 Million Cups), followed by an opportunity to learn more about SVEDC’s tenant organizations.

Nov. 19, 3-5:30 p.m.: Transforming Education: Leadership High School Launch at the National Hispanic Cultural Center, 1701 4th St. SW
Transforming Education features a screening of the award winning documentary film “Most Likely to Succeed,” an official selection in the 2015 Sundance Film Festival. It was deemed “one of the best edu-documentaries ever produced” by Education Week. The screening will be followed by a panel discussion investigating how we continue to build a bold new educational movement in New Mexico. We will re-imagine what our students and teachers are capable of achieving. This event will inspire a sense of purpose and possibility, and will engage our city in critical conversations about what school must look like to meet 21st century needs.

Nov. 20, 8:30-10 a.m.: Creative Mornings, Verge, 317 Commercial St. NE
This presentation is part of a series on “work.”
Speaker Jami Porter Lara is a contemporary artist best known for her hand-built ceramic vessels that combine the ancient techniques of pueblo pottery with the contemporary iconography of the plastic bottle. Her work  has been featured in the PBS arts series Colores! and in American Art Collector Magazine.

Nov. 20, 8:30-11 a.m.: “Be Your Own Boss” Freelancer Forum at Epicenter @ Innovate ABQ, Broadway and Central
FREE with ticket
The “Gig Economy” and occupations such as freelancers, independent professionals, and solopreneurs are creating new opportunities and transforming the future of work. Participants will talk with and learn more from experienced solo workers, build networks and get access to the resources they need to start and grow their solo ventures.
Tickets are available at no cost at: