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  • Mike J. Walker

Episode 18: Innovation in the Buckeye State

Updated: May 15



In this episode, Mike Walker talks to Chris Berry about his organization,OhioX and how it is enabling entrepreneurs innovate in Ohio. We also talk about the impacts COVID-19 has on innovation.


🎧 Listen Here

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What we Covered

Topics and questions we dove into on the podcast.

  • What’s OhioX’s mission?

  • OhioX Key accomplishments?

  • What's the structure of the organization and offerings it provides to Ohio community

  • For those that are not familiar with Ohio, what is unique about the innovation happening in Ohio?

  • In your mind, what are some of the most notable innovations that have recently come out of Ohio?

  • Is Ohio known for innovating in any specific industries?

  • How is the innovation different from Cincinnati, Columbus, and Cleveland?

  • What other states (or even countries) inspire you?

  • What coming in months and years to come for OhioX?

  • Is OhioX doing anything specifically fort COVID-19?

  • What Ohio COVID-19 innovations have caught your eye?

  • What can Ohio do to better prepare for another pandemic?

  • What does our “New Normal” look like?



Shift from Silicon Valley to the Mid-West

Now, rather than going deep myself, this Forbes article has pulled a lot of great data together, here's the Ohio specific aspects.


Seventy-six percent of venture capital money in 2017 was concentrated in California, New York and Massachusetts, with Silicon Valley, New York City and Boston the primary beneficiaries. The tally is up from 72% in 2012 and 64% a decade ago, according to the National Venture Capital Association.


Maybe there is too much capital in Silicon Valley, maybe valuations are too high? There is not too much capital in St. Louis or Columbus. Steve Case

But the generational wealth created by Silicon Valley companies like Apple, Google and Facebook has created high prices inside and outside the startup world. Median home prices are $1.1 million in San Francisco, and business costs are 57% higher than in St. Louis and 54% greater than Atlanta, according to Moody’s Analytics (San Jose homes are $1.4 million). Some investors are looking beyond the coasts for their next score.


National Rankings (According to Forbes)


#1 Columbus, Ohio

  • Major VC Deals: Sollis Therapeutics, Root Insurance, 2Checkout

  • 3-year Deal Count: 141

  • Cost of Doing Business: 2% below the national average

Former Sequoia Capital partners Chris Olsen and Mark Kvamme left Silicon Valley in 2012 to establish Drive Capital, which now ranks as the biggest VC firm in Columbus. The number of funds per capita in Columbus rank among the highest of any city.


#6 Cincinnati (read more here)

  • Major VC Deals: Everything But The House, Aerpio Pharmaceuticals, Assurex Health

  • 3-year Deal Count: 133

  • Cost of Doing Business: 7% below the national average

The Global Institute on Innovation Districts lists Cincinnati among 27 U.S. markets at the forefront of “a new geography of innovation,” thanks to the Corridor’s1 million square feet of new space representing $1 billion of investment.


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