The CTStartup podcast has a straightforward focus – it’s all about connecting people who are passionate about the growing Connecticut startup ecosystem. CTNext and Connecticut Innovations are pleased to have signed on as CTStartup’s new lead sponsors, because we, like the entrepreneurs who host and produce the program, are also passionate about the ecosystem, and about the people and companies it serves.
Below you’ll find links to CTStartup’s most recent episodes. For a complete listing going back to Episode 1, and to learn more about the people behind it, visit ctstartup.com.
Episode 122: Variety and Vision with New Haven’s Preview Labs
The gaming world has grown by leaps and bounds, and many entreprenuers have great ideas – but lack the technical skills to implement their vision. That’s when they turn to Bernard François, founder of rapid game prototyping company Preview Labs. Bernard’s journey may have started across the Atlantic, but his entrepreneurial spirit is the sort of thing the American Dream is made of.
You can also learn more about Bernard’s efforts to unite the CT game developer community with his other project, GameDev CT.
Episode 121: Finding Your Venn with Jaime Laufer
Hiring an employee is all about humans – yet the hiring process seems to be more and more automated, and less human, all the time. Enter Jamie Laufer and her recruitment firm Venn, which is grounded in the belief that a person’s greatest potential lives at the intersection of their talent and passion. Tune in to hear how she started her business mid-pandemic, and how she is bringing a different take to the recruitment process.
Episode 120: Off the Field Marketing with Paul Guarino of PG Sports
Startups and businesses can take many different shapes – some are full-time endeavors, others are more like successful side hustles. For Paul Gaurino of PG Sports, the line has definitely blurred as the sports apparel brand has been flourishing into a beast of its own. Tune in for a discussion about sports, startups, and building a brand from a deeply held passion.
Episode 119: Bottom Up Entrepreneurship in New Haven with COLLAB
One part of a vibrant city and culture is that when people come to or move for work, for school, or an event they fall in love with it and decide to stay. This is the case for both co-directors of Collab, Caroline Tanbee Smith and Margaret Lee who came to school at Yale and decided to make New Haven home after they graduated. The Connecticut innovation ecosystem is lucky to have these two as they founded Collab to bring a Heart based approach to building companies and uplifting entrepreneurs. In this episode Eric speaks to them about the Why behind starting Collab and their upcoming accelerator that starts this spring.
Episode 118: Be Bolder with the Bolder Company 2/17/21
Dave Menard and Eric Francis sit down with the founders of The Bolder Company. Jenny Drescher and Ellen Ornato first came on CTStartup as Connect and Improv and return in their new form, as The Bolder Company. A fun conversation which highlighted how COVID-19 forced them to focus their energy into the business which they could have the most impact on. Great lessons for businesses in this episode in addition to the case being made that puppets are necessary addons to a zoom call. Check them out at theboldercompany.com.
Episode 117: The Full Potential Movement with Nick Wagner 2/9/21
Being an entrepreneur comes in a variety of shapes and sizes, and Nick Wagner highlights how you can be an entrepreneur even with 9-5. Eric Francis sat down with Nick to explore his entrepreneurial journey from his first DJ contract with his high school to selling an aftermarket car parts business to starting a nonprofit. Through his non-profit C.I.T.E, Nick launched the Full Potential Movement to share career stories, ideas, and experiences to empower people to reach their full potential. This wide ranging conversation highlights how to cultivate and harness entrepreneurial skills in your career.
Episode 116: Evolution of an Entrepreneur & Company with Michael Cocuzza of Enviro Power 2/3/21
Eric Francis talks with Michael Cocuzza, Founder and CTO of EnviroPower, in his second appearance on the podcasts about discussing the evolution of his company and his own story as an entrepreneur. Over the past couple years, Michael has created a manufacturing company that will be releasing their SmartWatt boiler in 2021. The next generation in heating technology, the SmartWatt boiler produces high efficiency heat while generating cleaner and inexpensive electricity. The SmartWatt Boiler is designed to generate significant savings on operating-cost for homeowners, landlords and grid operators and reduce the carbon footprint for millions of buildings. Check them out at https://www.enviropowertec.com/