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ITA and 1871 Leverage the Power of "And"; Join Forces to Accelerate Chicago Companies

Tuesday, February 18, 2020   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Abbey Kwiat
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To our ITA Members, Partners, and Friends: 

On the heels of Valentine’s weekend, we wish to express our love and appreciation for you as we share some exciting news: the ITA and 1871 have joined forces! 

Effective immediately, we begin operations as one integrated organization. What will not change is our work for you, which we plan to continue in earnest! The ITA team (along with our members, partners, and network) will all be joining the now larger 1871 team and continue to focus on serving the needs of YOU, Chicago’s growth-stage companies. 

For over 35 years, both the ITA and the CEC (dba 1871) have been supporting, connecting, and serving the Chicago tech community. There is a natural alignment of organizational missions, as both our organizations are member-based and exist to enable success for our members by driving positive economic development in Chicago and across the region. We’re excited to officialize and deepen a relationship that has been growing for years!

“When we started ITA in 2005, our goal was to bring together the tech entrepreneurs and leaders of Chicago, to support and lift each other in building better companies,” said Terry Howerton, who founded ITA, and is CEO of TechNexus Venture Collaborative. “Under Fred Hoch's leadership -- and later Julia Kanouse -- ITA was a sparkplug to build and grow the vibrant, inter-connected tech community that Chicago now enjoys. Today there are dozens of organizations expanding that mission. I expect this 1871/ITA combination to better amplify all of Chicago."

So, you may wonder, what does this mean for you? The ITA goodness you’ve come to know and love is getting bigger and better! Leveraging the transformative power of “AND,” the new combined institution will enable collective acceleration for Chicago companies from incubation to growth to enterprise. 

“We believe this is the right answer for Chicago”, said Jeremie Bacon, Chair of the ITA Board, CEO of Imagineer Technology Group, and Co-Founder of The Forge: Lemont Quarries Adventure Park. “Our board is confident that the impact we’ve had to date will continue to expand under this new structure and 1871’s leadership. Together we can enable collective acceleration across the business lifecycle of tech companies.”

With unanimous support from both the ITA and the CEC boards, we have great momentum to make this integration a huge success. This opportunity is a perfect complement to cross-pollinate ideas, knowledge, and energy, and therefore augment and amplify support for all of our members.

From the whole team here at the ITA, we want you to know, dear members, partners, and friends: we will continue to work as tirelessly as always to deliver on the value you expect from us, while looking for ways to enhance our value proposition to you with additional benefits as we integrate our teams. We would like to express our deep appreciation for all your support of the ITA over the years and look forward to this next chapter with you! 

To read the official press release, see here.


With love and gratitude, 

Abbey, Derrick, Donna, Jessica H., Jessica P, Kaylin, Lindsey and Sydney (the ITA team) and the ITA Board of Directors

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