Emerging Companies can meet with major firms at April 7 Tech Summit. Emerging companies can apply through Feb. 24 to meet with major firms and explore likely business relationships around technology needs and innovation as part of the first annual Wisconsin Tech Summit. The day-long event will be held Monday, April 7, 2014. More information, including an application form, can be found at www.wistechsummit.com. The Tech Summit, produced by the Wisconsin Technology Council and partners that include the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp., is based on the assumption that large and small companies travel in different “orbits,” even if they’re in the same business sectors, and rarely collide except by chance. The summit will include a series of brief meetings, similar to a “speed-dating” exercise, that will foster communication and partnership. Major companies will be able to hear from emerging firms with innovative products or services tied to areas such as “big data,” connected devices and data analytics in sectors ranging from health care to information systems, and from power electronics to telecommunications. “The evolving information needs of major companies may require strategic partnerships with innovative young companies,” said Tom Still, president of the Wisconsin Technology Council. “Potential business relationships might include contracting for research and development, becoming part of a larger supply chain, and pursuing investment or acquisition strategies.” Participating major companies thus far are Rockwell Automation, GE Healthcare, American Family Insurance, HP Enterprise Services, Aurora Healthcare, AT&T, IBM, Faith Technologies and TASC (Total Administrative Services Corp). Others are being invited. Emerging companies can apply to participate at www.wistechsummit.com. The deadline is Monday, Feb. 24. A selection process involving major companies and the Tech Council will follow. Selected companies may meet with more than one company, depending on mutual interest. There is no cost to apply. If selected, a company registration fee will be charged; registration discounts will be available at that time for Wisconsin Innovation Network corporate members. Attendance at the event is limited to representatives of participating major companies, selected emerging companies and event sponsors. The “speed dating” meetings on April 7 will run about 15 minutes each. Other features of the event will include: • “Office Hours” meetings and presentations, which will be available to all participants during those times in which they are not scheduled for individual meetings. • Addresses by major speakers who will bring perspectives that will be helpful for major companies as well as emerging firms. • An opening panel discussion that will help set the stage by affording major companies an opportunity to talk generally about their goals, needs and emerging markets. Sponsors thus far include American Family Insurance, Baird Capital, BMO Harris Bank, GE Healthcare, Madison Gas & Electric, Mortenson Construction, Rockwell Automation, UW-Madison Office of Corporate Relations, UW-Milwaukee, Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. and Wisconsin Health and Education Facilities Authority. Visit www.wistechsummit.com for more information on the event, the application process and sponsorship opportunities.