Weinstein roams India; builds Chicago bridges
November 28, 2005
BY MICHAEL KRAUSS
'Hello from Bangalore,"
says David Weinstein, president of the Chicagoland Entrepreneurial
Center. Weinstein is one high-energy guy. He's always out advocating
for Chicago's entrepreneurs. He's a Lane Tech grad who's willing
to travel to the other side of the globe to make a contact for
Chicago. He's not stuck in the neighborhoods. He knows our economic
future is all about making Chicago a global gateway.
I just finished
reading The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the 21st Century
by Thomas L. Friedman (Farrar, Strauss, $27.50, 488 pages). The
book is a must read for anyone in Chicago who wants to understand
how technology is changing our global competitive landscape, and
is impacting all of us.
As if on cue,
on my computer screen is a note from Weinstein, the kid from Lake
View who is trying to build global bridges.
finished a series of excellent meetings with India's pioneers
in the technology world that were inspirational," he says.
He met Pradeep
Kar, president-elect of TiE in Bangalore. TiE is a global entrepreneurial
support group with a strong Chicago chapter headed by Lisle Technology
Partners CEO Adarsh Arora.
Weinstein meet Kar, a six-time entrepreneur who runs Microland
Limited. He also arranged meetings with Ashok Soota, managing
director of Mindtree Consulting and co-founder of Wipro.
great to get the word out about Chicago," Weinstein says.
"They see Chicago as the capital of the Midwest, and an untapped
market for India's entrepreneurial businesses. They like the diversity
of Chicago's entrepreneurial base as a source for products and
services to sell in India."
laid the foundation to help Chicago companies set up shop in India.
has cranes and glass-clad buildings going up everywhere,"
writesWeinstein, who describes cows still walking in the roads.
He sees stark contradictions, but remarkable growth.
investment and the potential Wal-Martization of India are controversial,
according to Weinstein. "Malls are going up everywhere,"
he says, but there's still room for growth if an intrepid Chicago
developer wants to step up. With the direct flight on American
Airlines between Chicago and New Delhi, that seems a real possibility.
Chamber of Commerce President Jerry Roper, who went to India as
well, "This trip was instrumental in building relationships
with the key business organizations in New Delhi and Bangalore
on behalf of Chicago's emerging entrepreneurs."
I started reading Chicago journalist Ted Fishman's book China,
Inc. How the Rise of the Next Superpower Challenges America and
the World (Scribner, $26, 342 pages). If you want to know
where the jobs are going and how we can capture more here in Chicago,
it's another good read.
Center goes seamless
a $600,000 grant to Northwestern University last week to promote
collaboration and technology commercialization. The company christened
the Motorola Center for Seamless Communications at the Robert
R. McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. Motorola
will fund 10 research projects by Northwestern graduate students
Data Processing Association hosts its first annual Student Empowerment
Retreat Saturday at the Embassy Suites in Lombard. The event is
designed for college and graduate students and college-bound 11th-
and 12th-graders seeking technology careers.
goal is to empower students and build skills for success,"
says Robert Blackwell Sr., founder of Blackwell Consulting. Topics
include leadership tutorials, insight on gaining financial independence
and tips on negotiating that first job offer. For more information
go to www.bdpa-chicago.org.
Park biotech startup QuadraSpec Inc. raised $3.9
million in a series A round. Spring Mill Venture Partners led
the round with Village Ventures as a co-investor. QuadraSpec's
CEO Chad Barden credits the Indiana Economic Development Corporation
for assisting the company in gaining funding.
Public Library spokesperson Maggie Killackey says, "Chicagoans
have an option for free Wi-Fi in every neighborhood." All
79 Chicago Public Library locations provide free computers and
free Internet access.
Krauss is a Chicago area tech writer and consultant.