Is There A Future For Target + Techstars Retail Accelerator In Minneapolis?

Those who have been following along with the Target + Techstars Retail Accelerator will recall the contractual term between these two respective companies has come to a halt after three years and some ~30 startups later.

Can they renew the relationship or was this most recent class Minnesota’s last?

That’s the question we posed to both sides, including Program Managing Director Ryan Broshar.

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Thank You Sponsor: Sezzle

by The TECHdotMN Team

It is important we recognize those who financially sponsor TECHdotMN because their direct contribution advances Minnesota’s technology industry.

Thank You Sezzle!

What does Sezzle do?

Sezzle is a fintech company whose mission is to financially empower the next generation. Our first product is an alternative payment platform that enables shoppers to pay with interest-free installment plans. We help merchants increase conversion rates, basket sizes, and purchase frequency, primarily with young shoppers who lack traditional credit.

When and how did Sezzle start?

Sezzle started in January 2016 when Charlie Youakim left Passport, a transportation payments company he co-founded, to build a solution that catered to Millennial and Gen Z consumers with Paul Paradis, a friend from business school and experienced sales and marketing executive.

What is unique about working at Sezzle?

We don’t take ourselves too seriously, but we take our work very seriously. We believe there is a massive disconnect between traditional financial services companies and young adults in the US, and everyone here is energized to solve this problem.

What are some open positions Sezzle is hiring for right now?

Current open positions include: Full-Stack Engineers – Senior & Junior, Android and iOS Developers, Customer Service Representatives, Merchant Success/Development, Sales, and Data Science.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

Sezzle is growing very quickly and we are determined to become a major player in the payments industry by focusing on the customer and what they need and want.

Q&A With Duluth’s Biggest Startup: GeaCom


Hardware meets software in Duluth where founder and CEO Mat Johnson leads GeaCom — makers of Phrazer and Kitsune.

After an immersive stretch of R&D, Johnson came up for air to share the latest around the biggest tech startup in the area:

What is GeaCom’s value proposition?

We’re pioneering a method in healthcare which personalizes the patient’s experience and solutions for providers that improve performance.

There’s a lot of waiting in healthcare, staging, and limited access to resources.  Consider that the majority of the time a patient is within their healthcare system, they are alone. So we give patients an extremely personalized guide using Phrazer Spirit and new Kitsune headset products.

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Meet A Minnesota Tech CFO: Charles Wyatt, Total Expert



Thanks to local commercial real estate pros CBRE for sponsoring the Meet A Minnesota Tech CFO series.

The CFO: Charles Wyatt, Total Expert

When and how did you get started in your finance career, specifically within the tech industry?

My finance career started when I was 19 and landed a job as an Accounting Clerk at a life insurance company. Growing up, I had admired my friends dad who was stock broker which got me interested in the field of finance.

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San Francisco’s Urban Innovation Fund establishes Midwest roots in Minneapolis



Via Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal

Urban Innovation Fund, a San Francisco-based venture capital firm investing in “the future of cities,” has opened an office in Minneapolis, becoming the latest fund from the coasts to establish a presence in the heartland.

“We didn’t want to just shape Silicon Valley,” said Andrew Felbinger, a Minneapolis-based associate with Urban Innovation Fund. “Our goal is to impact urban dwellers around the world.”

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Cargill Using Blockchain To Track & Trace Turkeys



Via Star Tribune

“Cargill is expanding its traceable turkey program this holiday season so more consumers can know the name of the farmer who raised their Thanksgiving bird.

The Minnetonka-based agribusiness tested the program in Texas last year with its Honeysuckle White brand. Consumers responded so favorably the company decided to nearly quadruple the number of traceable birds available in stores this November and December.”

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Marco Expands To East Coast With Purchase Of Phillips Office Solutions



Via News Release

Marco, a leading technology services provider in the United States, announced today its acquisition of East Coast leader Phillips Office Solutions. Since starting 78 years ago, Phillips has become a leading provider of copier/printers and document management solutions. The company has 140 employees at 10 offices across Pennsylvania and Maryland.”

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