Stakeholders to showcase 2020’s increased Idaho capital flow | Boise Startup Week

Stakeholders to showcase 2020’s increased Idaho capital flow

Idaho’s business ecosystem is continuing to grow, with new startups launching and merges of equally driven companies totaling $800 million in new capital flow brought in over the past year. Who invested in who and what was acquired through these transactions is available annually in the 2020 Idaho Deal Flow Report, and it will be shared mid-May with the community. The report, now in its seventh year, is produced in partnership by Alturas Capital and Idaho Technology Council. 

The Capital Connect event, noon to 1 p.m. May 18, will be virtual, and tickets are available through eventbrite.com. Guest speakers are from the recently acquired Kount (now an Equifax Company) — Jim Gasaway, Rich Stuppy and Brad Wiskirchen — and will share their perspectives “on how the company overcame such adversity during 2020 despite all the obstacles,” event organizers described.

“This is one way we ring the bell and celebrate what’s going on in Idaho,” said Blake Hansen, founder of Alturas Capital. “I think a lot of people gauge ‘top of funnel activity,’ (companies starting and their early growth); you can kind of track some of the up-and-coming businesses, and they represent some of the more promising growing businesses in the state.”

This year the state saw about the same number of deals (157), and those deals totaled $5.2 billion in capital flow; 2019 saw $4.4 billion. 

One of the biggest deals last year was Albertsons’ Initial Public Offering, Hansen shared, describing it as a new chapter in the Idaho-grown company and one of the state’s largest employers. On a smaller scale, Hansen also highlighted Gather’s explosive growth while meeting new community needs as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Gather is a local startup that was accelerated in part through the Y Combinator. 

“While we can all agree it has been a challenging year, Idaho has still found itself expanding both in deals and especially revenue,” Idaho Technology Council states on the event page. “We are looking forward to celebrating such business success and growth from 2020.”

A user’s guide to the report

Following Idaho Technology Council’s Capital Connect event showcasing the 2020 Idaho Deal Flow Report, the latest report will join the reports of years past on Idaho Technology Council’s website

These reports are valuable, in part, by establishing credibility for companies and the ecosystem, Hansen explained, to local investors, business leaders and companies looking to enter the Idaho market. Further, this is attractive for new talent, both on small and large scales.

Idaho is known for its agriculture, mining and forestry industries, but recent years highlight an even bigger successful ecosystem for software, among other industries. The Idaho Deal Flow report also serves as a benchmark showing how Idaho compares to other states in the U.S. in terms of one metric of the business environment.

“The stable blue chip companies in Idaho, they’re the launch pad of innovation, and they attract talent to Idaho and the region,” Hansen said. “We won’t have an ecosystem without (Idaho and outside) money flowing to Idaho companies. The deal flow report is our way of showing our narrative.”

One of the challenges over the years has been perception of opportunity within the ecosystem, especially for incoming talent; today, the Idaho Deal Flow Report helps show talent is staying, and there is mobility available through choice or necessity. This may also attract reentry of Idaho residents looking to return to their home state. 

Capital flow is key in helping facilitate growth, and the Idaho Deal Flow Report can help facilitate that. 

“This has been like my labor of love to my community,” Hansen said, giving shared credit to Idaho Technology Council. “It’s been a great collaboration; (we) came together asking ‘What can we do to help our state?’ This shows what happens when industry and business get together to solve problems … and that is the Idaho way.”

This article was created as a collaboration between Built In Idaho, Boise Startup Week and Trailhead.

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