Otherwise referred to as Silicon Valley South West, Phoenix has seen been regarded as the place for the underdog business owner to thrive in. From providing owners with small business classes to offering them small business loans, never has there been a better time for even the least experienced owner to start a business in Phoenix, AZ
As big supporters of the bold and brave underdogs ourselves, we the brave and bold folks at Bold Patents have generated a list of 23 essential resources for entrepreneurs and inventors in Phoenix.
So grab your pens, paper, and tablets everyone and let’s begin!
Rated #1 in the U.S. for Innovation by US News since 2016, Arizona State University has since been the place where Nobel laureates thrive and Pulitzer Prize winners take on the Arizona education system sky high.
Since 1885, ASU has provided its students with the tools and lessons needed to help them prepare for life after graduation. For instance, here at ASU, students can take advantage of a hands-on virtual-reality biology lab. This way, they would better understand how exactly science and technology intersect with one another as they perform virtual dissections inside.
They can also take advantage of programs such as the three-year graduate art program created in collaboration with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. In this program, students work in unison with curators and faculty while completing coursework and taking a job at either LACMA or the ASU Art Museum.
Meanwhile, for those interested in working for, ASU offers a NASA grant to all of its STEM majors.
Regardless as to which industry a student wants to go into after graduation, ASU offers strong, innovative, challenging programs for just about everyone who attends there.Contact Information:
From providing businesses with small business loans to offering free business counseling in collaboration with SCORE (Service Corps of Retired Executives) Phoenix, the Arizona District Office has since been a huge supporter of helping small businesses of all different fields and backgrounds thrive in South West Silicon Valley.
Here at the Arizona District Office, women-led businesses can take advantage of the office’s Women’s Business Ownership Representative. This way, they would know and better understand how to target their goods and/or services to the right people.
On the first Wednesday of every month, the Arizona District Office offers a small business loan clinic to owners. This way, they would know and understand which loans are right for their business and how exactly they would pay for that particular loan. This clinic is especially great for veterans looking to start their own businesses from scratch.
By the way, according to its website, the next session is on Wednesday, September 4, 2019, at 9:00 am MST.
Founded in 1973, the Arizona Small Business Association (ASBA) has since been regarded as THE VOICE for small business in Arizona.
For over 46 years, the ASBA has been providing all those who enter its facility with free to reduce cost small business classes, workshops, and mentorship programs guaranteed to give them an edge in today’s technologically competitive marketplace such as its investment partner program.
In 2010, the ASBA was recognized as one of the “Best Places to Work” in the United States and won the Alfred P. Sloan Award for Business Excellence in Workplace Flexibility.
Once a year, the ASBA offers the Arizona Small Business Con (AZBizCon). This way, business owners can interact with other business owners throughout the area while learning more about the different industries that exist throughout South West Silicon Valley.
As of now, they are located on 11811 N. Tatum Blvd., Suite P-195, Phoenix, AZ 85028.
Founded in 1988 by a group of passionate business owners, the Arizona Small Business Development Center has since been regarded as, “Arizona’s largest most comprehensive and accessible statewide source of assistance for small businesses in every stage of development.”
According to its about page, “The Network consists of two teams – the Arizona Small Business Development Center Network (AZSBDC), which provide tools, training, and one-on-one business counseling, and the Arizona Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (PTAC), which help businesses seeking federal, state and local contracting opportunities.” Together, they help to provide business owners with as much valuable information as they can to start a business.
As of now, members can take advantage of…
Free one-on-one business counseling
Long-term technical assistance
Appropriate market research
Workshops carefully tailored to every single business’s general interest
At this time, the IAA hosts two meetings per month: one on the first Wednesday of each month for members (free) and non-members ($10-$20 per person) and the other on the third Wednesday of each month for members only.
While the first Wednesday meetings and keynote speaker meetings, the third Wednesday meetings are a private lesson and feedback session that generally follow a think-tank format.
No college degree or prior technical training is necessary if you want to become a member of this organization. :)
Founded in 1987 by a group of young passionate entrepreneurs, the Entrepreneurs’ Organization Arizona (EOAZ) is a global network of more than 12,000+ influential business owners with 167 chapters in 52 countries.
Since its founding, this group has provided its members with the tools needed to help them succeed in today’s competitive business world.
Most of these tools consist of a private FORUM, one-of-a-kind chapter events, an EO marketplace, and much more!
According to its website, the EOAZ will be hosting a talk starring New York Times bestselling author and longtime Esquire writer (yes, THAT Esquire) Cal Fussman on September 26th, 2019.
Created in partnership with Google for Startups and #yesphx, StartUp Grind Phoenix is a local chapter geared to those looking to learn lifelong business lessons from fellow founders, innovators, educators, and investors who share lessons learned on the road to building great companies.
Originally, Startup Grind started in Silicon Valley. Since then, it has expanded and helped millions of entrepreneurs, “build their businesses, connect with strategic partners, and secure funding by hosting fireside chats.
According to the website, the Next fireside chat is SEPT. 25, 2019, starring Tomas Gorny, the co-founder, chairman, and CEO of Unitedweb, a holdings company, and Nextiva, a cloud communications company.
Okay, to be fair, #yesphx, isn’t exactly an entrepreneur group or any type of group specifically. However, because it focuses on helping to make Phoenix a better place for entrepreneurs and inventors to work and thrive in, we have to give this group credit someway, somehow.
According to its website, #yesphx started out as (yup, you guessed it) a hashtag. However, since 2014, it grew into a site and a network of fellow Phoenix entrepreneurs looking to learn more about Phoenix in general from accelerators to patent attorneys.
At this time, the group is getting ready for PHX Startup Week 2020 so for all of you Phoenix inventors out there, please be on the lookout!
Founded on Jun 1, 2019, the Creative Entrepreneurs of PHX has since provided individuals with a place to work on their projects and collaborate with other individuals on ways to effetely start a business from scratch.
According to its Meetup page, “This is NOT a business networking group to gain clients, customers, etc. This is NOT a class or coaching session. This is simply a safe space to let your creative juices flow and continue your entrepreneurship journey.”
Regardless as to whether you’re a fresh-out-of-college student looking to take your business skills to the next skill or a veteran entrepreneur looking to brush up on some skills, anyone can join.
WeMeet Phoenix is a diverse community of professionals, freelancers, entrepreneurs, founders, business owners, and influencers looking to network with others face-to-face through monthly networking & happy hour events while exploring Phoenix’s bar and nightlife scene at no charge whatsoever.
In the past, this group has met at The Porch, which is located near The Vig Arcadia.
According to its Meetup page, the next meeting is Thursday, September 19, 2019, at The Porch at 5:30 pm MST.
Founded on September 18, 2000, the eWomen Network is a community of working-class entrepreneurial women in Phoenix and Scottsdale looking to work and collaborate with other female entrepreneurs in order to acquire more clients and customers by hosting networking events, workshops, and business conferences throughout the area.
According to its website, this group has conducted nearly 1,500 events and hosted the #1 women’s entrepreneur Conference in North America.
Its foundation, the eWomen Network Foundation was also recognized by CNN as an “American Hero.”
On September 10th, the group will host a workshop for female business owners looking to brand themselves better.
Created in 1964 to help businesses across Phoenix succeed in today’s competitive market, SCORE is a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization that provides its members with free counseling and other inexpensive tools.
This group currently has over 60 mentors and 10,500 volunteers. According to its website, out of all the chapters that exist within the United States, the Phoenix chapter consistently ranks in the top 20.
For those looking to get free business counseling, each session will last about one hour and is available to all U.S. citizens over the age of 18 regardless of their background in entrepreneurship or preferred method of communication (in-person, email, or video).
Founded in 2011, the Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) is a group dedicated to, “growing and strengthening Arizona’s economy” by providing its members with a mentorship program that partners them with an Entrepreneur in Residence (EIR).
The Entrepreneur in Residence (EIR) coaches the company through five panels that focus on intake, marketing, finance, dry run, and final/graduation. According to the website,” in each, an entrepreneur pitches its business model to a team of CEOs and professional experts and will receive specific points of feedback that identify gaps and strategic opportunities.” This way, they would better understand how to make the most out of their business.
For those looking to succeed in Phoenix’s compeiitve market, the Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA)’s Venture Ready mentorship program is worth taking advantage of.
While most mentorship programs focus on teaching owners the general basics of starting a business, the AGIA Arizona takes that a step by hosting a series of networking mixers, hands-on workshops, and many other events to help entrepreneurs and inventors of all different backgrounds refine their ideas, business model(s), and/or inventions by utilizing design thinking tactics.
One of their most famous evens happens to be Phoenix Design Week which is an annual festival that includes a 2-day conference, plus ongoing monthly events and exhibitions throughout the year, such as its Collide Meetup, Snaps In-House Showcase, Adobe software training, and much more!
As of now, they will be hosting a hands-on workshop on designing your own icon and how to make it stand out in the most appropriate manner on Sat, Sep 14, 2019, from [2:00] PM – [5:00] PM. For those who plan on attending the event, it is highly recommended that you bring notebooks, pencils (or pens, if you prefer) and a laptop with Adobe Illustrator.
Named Inc Magazine’s Best Workplaces of 2019, Coplex is an award-winning startup accelerator that helps non-coding founding teams co-create new software companies in as little as 8-weeks using the “structured Venture Builder programs.”
In these programs, students are split into teams and are tasked to quickly test and validate critical assumptions while building the technology needed to help make a difference in the lives of others for tomorrow.
Accroding to its Facebook page, “Coplex has started over 50 tech companies since 2017 and has been featured in USA Today, The Washington Post, VentureBeat, Inc, Forbes, NPR, and Entrepreneur.”
At this time, they serve the following industries:
Media and Entertainment
For those looking to make a difference in the tech world while getting to know more about it, Complex is a highly recommended program to start off with.
While it’s one thing for today’s business owners to read Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad Poor Dad in order to learn how to become rich, it’s another for them to take what they’ve learned from Kiyosaki’s book and apply it to the real world. For Latino business owners, that is exactly what the Fuerza Local Business Accelerator program does!
For those of you who don’t know, Fuerza Local Business Accelerator program is a six-month program designed to teach underserved low-income Latino business owners to understand the basics of financial literacy and business development in order to succeed in today’s competitive market.
Every week, participants attend classes on a variety of topics including marketing, business planning, cash flow management, and many others. They also participate in a lending circle, which requires them to make on-time payments every month they are in the program.
According to the website, “These payments are reported to Experian, building a credit history for the small business owner, often for the first time. Their savings is then matched by a scholarship from the Local First Arizona Foundation. From here, each graduate is offered the opportunity to access credit at fair market rates through several partnering financial institutions in lieu of any previous credit history.” Because of this, business owners can apply what they’ve learned to real-life situations in ways that are relevant to them.
Since 2013, the accelerator has opened a lot of doors for Latino business owners, including but not limited to Ponch Custom Tees, Mig N’ Maids, and Colodos Coffee & Crepes.
A WESTMARC Best of the West 2010 Award winner, AZ TechCelerator is an affordable incubator that provides its members with all of the basic necessities from custom-tailored mentorship programs to distraction-free coworking space.
In this incubator, members can take advantage of its numerous programs such as its Lunch and Learn programs, ABCs of Starting your own Business, Grants 2.0, and many others courtesy of SCORE Phoenix and America’s SBDC Arizona.
According to its website, the next Lunch and Learn program is on September 12th, 2019 from 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm MST. The topic is reputation and listing management. For those looking to reestablish their brand and make sure that it stands out from the crowd, definitely, take advantage of this program while it’s still going on!
Located in Central Phoenix (AZ), The Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation is a full-service business incubator that houses a vibrant community of entrepreneurs who are working on industry-changing technologies from those that utilize renewable energy to those that help make homes “smarter.”
Here, members can utilize a variety of its resources from onsite rapid prototyping and 3D printing to discount programs with Amazon Web Services, HubSpot, and PADT, plus reduced-cost, in-house marketing services.
In 2019, it was awarded the INBIA Science and Technology Incubator of the Year and as such continues to remain strong and proud serving the brave and bold scientists in the area.
Arizona Tech Investors (ATI) is a seed funding group founded in 2007 by Arizona-based investors to support, “high-quality, high-growth seed and early-stage Information Technology and Life Science startups in Arizona, the southwest US, and beyond.”
In this group, members provide more than financial support. They also provide mentorship and partner referrals so that these “high-quality startups” can continue to become more than simple startups looking to become the next Tesla.
Since its founding, ATI members have invested in over 60 companies. Today, it is comprised of more than 90 individuals dedicating their time, knowledge, and resources to deliver the advantages that angel support can provide.
In order to be considered by ATI, a business must have a working prototype, beta customers, a go-to-market strategy, and a staffing plan.
Formed in 200 by a small group of Tucson-based private investors, Desert Angels is a leading angel investor group that funds “entrepreneurial ventures” after having them go through a rigorous screening process and inviting them to present to the organization’s general membership at one of its monthly dinner meetings.
According to its website, “The Desert Angels hold monthly dinner meetings from September through June.” During these meetings, members not only present what they hope to offer to their future customers, but also hear talks from nationally recognized speakers including successful entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, and many others.
Outside of investing in companies, the Desert Angels help those in the Tuscon community understand the benefits of angel investing by assisting the University of Arizona’s Eller College of Management and its McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship.
Home of the BRiC (Business Resource and Innovation Center), the Tempe Public Library provides all entrepreneurs and inventors who enter its doors with a plethora of resources from free wi-fi to access to great coffee and food from the Friends of the Tempe Public Library Connections Café.
Here, members can access books such as DK Publishing, Inc.’s How Business Works Guide and rent comfortable indoor workspaces equipped with A/V for groups or individuals.
For those looking to get extra help on refining their business skills in a public setting, SCORE Phoenix mentors often meet there free of charge.
When it comes to bringing ideas and inventions to market, there’s no question that the patent filing process can be so confusing to navigate.
That is why here at Bold Patents, we exist to help our clients through the legal processes of intellectual property in South West Silicon Valley. This way, they too can get their innovations to market as quickly, safely, and efficiently as possible.
Because they focus only on patents, they are able to find the lawyer(s) that best fit a certain company’s needs.
If you would like to know more about what a patent is and what the steps for finding the patent that’s right for your invention, then check out this article on what is a patent.
There you have it, everyone! The top 23 resources for inventors and entrepreneurs in Phoenix:
Arizona State University – America’s #1 School of Innovation
Offices for Small Businesses
Arizona District Office – A great place for business owners to learn more about how to apply and pay for a business loan
Arizona Small Business Association (ASBA) – THE VOICE for small business in Arizona since 1973
Arizona Small Business Development Center – “Arizona’s largest most comprehensive and accessible statewide source of assistance for small businesses in every stage of development”
The Inventors Association of Arizona (IAA) – A great place for those looking to learn how to become an inventor regardless of your background
Entrepreneurs’ Organization Arizona (EOAZ) – A one-of-a-kind group known for their one-of-a-kind forum
StartUp Grind Phoenix – A group known for their Silicon Valley-style fireside chats
#yesphx – A hashtag, a group, and a Phoenix entrepreneurial welcome group movement all at once
Creative Entrepreneurs of PHX – A newly-formed safe space for entrepreneurs to bounce ideas off of one another in order to build their business from scratch
WeMeet Phoenix – A diverse community of professionals, freelancers, entrepreneurs, founders, business owners, and influencers looking to network with others face-to-face through monthly networking & happy hour events
eWomen Network – Helping women-led business owners connect with other women-led business owners since the turn of the 21st century
SCORE Phoenix – A 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization that provides its members with free counseling and other inexpensive tools
Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) – A group dedicated to, “growing and strengthening Arizona’s economy” by providing its members with a mentorship program that partners them with an Entrepreneur in Residence (EIR)
AGIA Arizona – A group that heavily invests its time and money in helping businesses understand design thinking
Coplex – An award-winning tech accelerator for non-tech people
Fuerza Local Business Accelerator – For low-income Latino business owners looking to brush up on their financial literacy skills
AZ TechCelerator – An affordable incubator that provides its members with all of the basic necessities from custom-tailored mentorship programs to distraction-free coworking space
Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation – A winner of the 2019 Science and Technology Incubator of the Year Award
Arizona Tech Investors (ATI) – Dedicated to helping, “high-quality, high-growth seed and early-stage Information Technology and Life Science startups in Arizona, the southwest US, and beyond” thrive in today’s competitive market since 2007
Desert Angels – One of America’s leading angel investor groups
Tempe Public Library – Great for those looking for a free, public place to hold conferences in while checking out resources
Phoenix Patent Attorneys
Bold Patents – Your future go-to place for protecting your invention for years to come courtesy of the brave and the bold
In the meantime, tell us, what other resources would you recommend to your fellow entrepreneurs and inventors in Phoenix? Please let us know in the comments below!
Legal Note: This blog article does not constitute legal advice. Although the article was written by a licensed USPTO patent attorney there are many factors and complexities that come into patenting an idea. We recommend you consult a lawyer if you want legal advice for your particular situation. No attorney-client or confidential relationship exists by simply reading and applying the steps stated in this blog article.