Tech entrepreneurship organization Verge is unveiling a new brand and an online community for its more than 10,000 entrepreneurs, investors and professionals. Founder Matt Hunckler says PowderKeg will give innovators access to advisers and product-sharing opportunities as well as a forum to share stories. He says the organization is also continuing its national expansion, with chapters opening soon in Kansas City, Nashville, Raleigh and Cincinnati.
Verge made the announcement Thursday during an event at The Vogue in Indianapolis’ Broad Ripple neighborhood.
Hunckler says PowderKeg will have a three-pronged approach. The Guides section will connect tech entrepreneurs with advisers to help them grow and scale. He says artificial intelligence technology will help pair users with advisers "at the right time." The Product Share platform allows entrepreneurs to share new products with the rest of the community and receive feedback. The Stories section gives users the chance to share experiences as an entrepreneur, investor as well as lessons they have learned.
In addition to Indianapolis, Verge has communities in Muncie, Terre Haute, Bloomington and West Lafayette as well as Chicago, Louisville and St. Louis. Hunckler says PowderKeg will help connect all of those communities and give startups access to resources outside of their communities.
He also tells Inside INdiana Business the online community will complement the organization’s regular pitch and networking events.
"(We’ve) created these connections between the community members, whether they’re the founders or the investors," says Hunckler. "What we want to do with technology is scale that, so in between events, every day, you can be connecting with the right resources, whether that’s a company or a person."