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Nick Williams

Reporter | Business
Recent content from Nick Williams
Chanti Miller, left, Dave O’Neil and Phuong O’Neil represent the real estate group behind Mosaic, a new event venue in downtown Minneapolis that w

Downtown Minneapolis' newest venue caters to multicultural weddings and events

Mosaic is an event space in the Finnegans Brew Co. building that aims to offer customers more flexibility and control.
St. Louis Park tech company Rem5 has created a virtual universe called Simulacra.

Minnesota companies enter the metaverse

Virtual reality headsets can add a deeper component of three-dimensional communication, as it's a more natural form of engagement, experts said.
Steve Grove, commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, said the money for startups will help with job growth in

University of Minnesota to manage $34.5M in state funds for startup investments

Three years ago when DEED created Launch Minnesota, an initiative dedicated to supporting the state's startup companies, entrepreneurs told officials a state-backed venture fund could be a solution.
Sam Bankman-Fried speaks at the Crypto Bahamas conference in Nassau on April 27, 2022. He resigned Friday from FTX after the exchange filed for bankru

Fast-moving fall of FTX gives industry experts pause, including in Minnesota

The cryptocurrency exchange on Friday filed for bankruptcy and its founder, CEO Sam Bankman-Fried, resigned.
Forever Ware co-founder Natasha Gaffer, left, Chief Financial Officer Lee Sweatt and co-founders Nick Krumholz and Nolan Singroy gathered at Roots Cof

Want takeout but don't like containers? Here's an answer

Forever Ware hopes over $100,000 in government grants will help it expand — both through new users and the number of restaurants and coffee shops using their reusable takeout containers.
Vehicles on the sale lot at Fury Motors in Oak Park Heights. Auto inventory has stabilized, giving some local dealers relief as demand remains high.

As auto inventory stabilizes, shoppers still face high prices

While most dealers in Minnesota still won't have inventory in large numbers over the next year, industry reports show production is up compared to the same period last year.
Robert Kaufman, founder of ConnexPay.

Payments company started by former U.S. Bank exec raises $110M from investors

The company is now headquartered in Bonita Springs, Fla., but maintains an office in St. Paul.
Previn Solberg, president and founder of Invictus Brewing Co., left, with a beer made with honey from the hives kept by Dustin Vanasse, owner of Bare

Could solar panels be integrated into farms instead of taking acreage out of commission?

Some hope to overcome resistance in Midwest by saying solar fields and farm fields can co-exist.
Rainbow Chinese Restaurant & Bar owner Tammy Wong prepared a batch of shrimp fried rice Oct. 5, in Minneapolis.

Inflation is putting the squeeze on Minnesota's small businesses

Among the top challenges facing operations are price increases for equipment and materials and higher interest rates on loans and financing costs.
Eden Prairie-based Arctic Wolf has secured $401 million in convertible notes from existing and new investors, the company announced.

Eden Prairie's Arctic Wolf cyber defense firm secures $401M in new funding

The money will go to hiring more people and product development, the company said.
NetSpi CEO Aaron Shilts

Minneapolis cybersecurity firm NetSPI raises $410M to expand globally

In addition to personnel in Canada, NetSPI is expanding teams in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and India.
Jim Albertelli, CEO of Voxtur, which acquired Blue Water Financial Technologies.

St. Louis Park fintech company Blue Water acquired in $101M deal

The deal by Voxtur includes $30 million in cash and the remainder in shares of Voxtur's stock to Blue Water's shareholders.
There are many apps now available to help people get more value out of their smartphones — and maybe waste less time on them.

Minnesota techies suggest ways to get more value from your smartphone

The value users receive from their phones can depend on how much that person understands what's possible with that device.
Ethos founder Luke Wilcox.

Ethos ESG, a Minneapolis startup, acquired by NYC firm

The Twin Cities founder will continue to lead company, which offers an investment tool that assesses the environmental, social and governance actions of large corporations.
Stackwell will work with the Timberwolves and Lynx to hold some financial literacy events at Mayo Clinic Square, the teams’ practice center in downt

Timberwolves, Lynx partner with investment app to decrease racial wealth gap in Twin Cities

The pro basketball teams forged a multi-year partnership with Stackwell to bring financial literacy events to the area.
Entrepreneurs at Twin Cities Startup Week looking for people 'to make a difference'

Entrepreneurs at Twin Cities Startup Week looking for people 'to make a difference'

Thousands of entrepreneurs, investors, academics and corporate executives will attend events around the Twin Cities this week designed to help them grow and finance their businesses, change their work culture or simply improve the metro's tech and innovation industry.
BKB Floral Foam won the grand prize of the 2022 Minnesota Cup, a statewide innovation competition operated by the University of Minnesota. From left t

A sustainable floral foam startup wins MN Cup's $50,000 grand prize

The company makes compostable foam brick that holds flowers in place.
People who toured progress of the community tech hub inside Sabathani Community Center in south Minneapolis tested a computer-controlled robot.

A tech center near George Floyd Square? Many say it's time

Smart North is raising $500,000 to pay for equipment like 3-D printing machines, staff and food as part of a nutrition program for those who use the center.
Since 2006, 216 companies have been created based on software, therapies, machines and devices created by researchers, faculty, staff members and some

University of Minnesota's startup pipeline helps drive state's innovation economy

In fiscal year 2022, the U launched 22 companies
Colaboratory co-founders Brian Bispala and Scott Moore are hoping to automate a process that is typically driven by personal relationships and busines

Minneapolis software firm Colaboratory plays corporate matchmaker

Colaboratory is already finding users for its software that spots brand-to-brand collaboration opportunities.
Minnesota Twins chief revenue officer Meka Morris posed for a photo Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2022 at Target Field in Minneapolis.

Watch for jersey patches — and more virtual reality opportunities — from the Minnesota Twins

Last summer, the Minnesota Twins appointed Meka White Morris as chief revenue officer, a new position to drive business growth for the ballclub. We asked her about the opportunities.
Soona co-founder and CEO Liz Giorgi in one of her locations in Minneapolis.

Meet 3 young Minnesota entrepreneurs shaking up the business scene

These millennial and Gen Z entrepreneurs have been pushing the envelope since they entered the workforce. Now they are the ones making the decisions.
Georgia Fort runs Blck Press, a journalism company that uses social media platforms mainly to showcase its work.

Minnesota entrepreneurs redefining who leads and how: 'The game has changed'

Through failures and successes, Minnesota's new business leaders see path to financial freedom, work-life balance and cultural acceptance by blazing their own path.
A rendering of a proposed 1.4 million-square-foot data center in Chaska

CloudHQ planning to build $1 billion data center in Chaska

CloudHQ is projected to provide local jurisdictions hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue over the lifecycle of the building, according to the plans submitted to the city.
The Renewal By Andersen replacement windows factory in Cottage Grove is one of Minnesota’s many manufacturers of windows and doors.

How did Minnesota become a window manufacturing hub?

Minnesota's window industry is one of the most productive in the U.S.
Gabor Deli, left, and his wife, Katalin, in their Olympic Gymnastics Academy. The two also coached together at the University of Minnesota.

Longtime Minnesota gymnastics coach Gabor Deli dies at 76

Originally from Hungary, he coached hundreds of young gymnasts, some who reached All-America status and even the Olympics.
Texas-based Coinsource is having its Bitcoin ATMs installed in Kwik Trip stores across the Upper Midwest.

Despite its troubles, cryptocurrency use is growing in Minnesota

From crypto ATMs to stores accepting digital currency for payment, the unregulated cryptocurrency is opening new avenues for people.
Cryptocurrency, such as Bitcoin, is an unregulated financial system heavily influenced by mathematical models.

Cryptocurrency terms to know

If you wonder what a blockchain is, here's a guide for you.
Portrait of Joe Connolly Minneapolis,Minn., on Wednesday July 14, 2022. Joe Connolly, who started Visana Health in 2019 after watching his mother suff

Supreme Court abortion ruling brings attention to Minneapolis women's health startup

Employers and insurance companies look to Visana Health's virtual platform to bolster women's health benefits, with more interest following the Supreme Court's decision to overturn federal abortion rights.
Ryan Broshar, left, and Natty Zola, right, partners in Matchstick Ventures.

Minnesota startups see venture capital decline, though not as much as elsewhere

The deal flow is much slower, but the state's venture capitalists say they still have their eyes and wallets open.
Lynx forward Aerial Powers celebrated with fans at Target Center during the second half of a double overtime win over Phoenix on Tuesday.

Amid more wins on court, Wolves and Lynx use tech to fill seats

Teams partnered with Kraft Analytics Group to decipher data on ticket pricing, merchandise sales, events and fan engagement.
Sezzle CEO Charlie Youakim, left, and Chief Revenue Officer Paul Paradis.

Australian company's purchase of Minneapolis fintech Sezzle is off

Zip will reimburse Sezzle $11 million to cover fees associated with a failed deal that started last winter.
Two boats with eager anglers departed the dock at McArdle’s Resort on Lake Winnibigoshish early May 14 for the Minnesota Fishing Opener. Lund and Cr

Minnesota's watercraft economy is 'big business,' and still growing

In 2020, Minnesota ranked fifth in the country in total marine expenditures.
Bust Out’s chief executive, Jeff Lin — surrounded by Chief Creative Officer Jamey Erickson; Shanita John, director of operations; and Kesah Schmit

Driven by pandemic, Minneapolis tech company creates performing arts streaming platform

Pennant allows theaters groups, orchestras and artists to charge for access to live-streamed events and premium previously recorded content.
Speakers at Angel Fest, a one-day conference in Minneapolis on investing in early-stage companies, included (from left): Greg Hoyt of Gather Venture G

Have you thought of investing in a startup? Here's what you need to know

Angel investors provide capital to entrepreneurs in the early — and sometimes pre-revenue — stages of their new business.
Uponor North America, with headquarters in Apple Valley, stresses flexibility and safety.

COVID-19 policies still important as workplaces move on

From factories to offices, companies need to keep changing the playbook as the pandemic changes the workplace.
Ergotron’s products include monitor mounts, computer carts, standing desks and workstations for various industries, including health care, education

St. Paul sit-to-stand desk maker Ergotron sold for $650M

Ergotron's parent company, London-based Melrose Industries, announced an agreement to sell the company to a Houston-based private equity firm.
Amanda Heyman, left, Danielle Steer and Adam Choe launched Tundra Ventures, a $10 million venture capital fund that will fund companies run by women,

New fund aims to help businesses run by women, people of color

The fund focuses on startups focused in technology, consumer packaged goods and health care.
The city’s reconstruction plan for the intersection of 38th Street and Chicago Avenue will involve the entire public right-of-way and will include n

At George Floyd Square, 'all the businesses ... are still struggling'

A lack of parking due to concrete barricades and sculptures at 38th and Chicago in Minneapolis is hindering customer traffic, they say.
Stunning Beauty Supply owner Henrietta Smaller used grant money from Comcast to tide her business over as it built a customer base.

Small business grant allows Burnsville beauty supply store to stabilize, grow

Comcast offers $10,000 grants to businesses owned by women and people of color through a program launched after George Floyd's killing.
Elizabeth Schmidt, left, and her parents, Don Anderson and Linda Anderson, opened Fat Pants Brewing in Eden Prairie in November 2019.

For many Minnesota businesses, PPP loans were saving grace

Through PPP, more than 228,000 loans were distributed to Minnesota-based companies, totaling more than $16.6 billion in financial relief.
Jessica Waller works on making a cashew nut butter in an industrial kitchen at the Cornerstone Creek Apartments in Golden Valley. She and her husband

Thinking of starting a business in Minnesota? Here's what you should know

The nuances go on and on, so we talked with a few entrepreneurs in the Twin Cities about their journey.
Minnesota Guard members and local officials are sandbagging vulnerable areas after flash flooding on Red Lake River on Sunday. Water levels were also

Minnesota Guard sent to help after flash flooding in Crookston area

A heavy downpour and strong winds that began Saturday caused river levels to rise to just above 26 feet.
Ned Zimmerman-Bence, Brian Lukis and David Radcliffe, left to right, are co-founders of GogyUp, based in Impact Hub Minneapolis. The company provides

Mpls. tech company helps adults with low literacy with work, health care instructions

A Minneapolis startup called GogyUp is looking to address a literacy issue that impacts millions of adults living in the U.S. with its assisted reading and translation technology.
Satiya Amporful, owner of Uniquely Global, stands inside her internationally sourced store in downtown Minneapolis.

Small businesses hope downtown foot traffic returns — soon

These retailers are now facing new challenges with supply chain disruptions while not seeing the same retail traffic as before the pandemic.
Lev Mailer owned and operated Lev Mailer Actors Studio in Edina for more than a decade.

Lev Mailer, actor and acting teacher who ran a studio in Edina, dies at 88

To Janet Fogg, Lev Mailer was a unique, talented individual who helped her reach her potential as an actor. A student at Mailer's acting studio…
Allison Whalen, with her children, started Parentaly in 2019. “I started working on a business really out of anger and motivation,” Whalen said. �

Hopkins entrepreneur helps large companies – and parents – navigate parental leave

Clients include Best Buy, Zoom and social media company Snap Inc.
Dispatch helps drivers connect with companies that need help delivering items.

Bloomington company that helps drivers schedule delivery gigs raised $50M

Instead of scheduling drivers to transport people or make retail deliveries, Dispatch goes after the business-to-business market.
TurnSignl, an app that connects a lawyer with people pulled over by police, will be free in Brooklyn Center through a partnership with Blue Cross and

App for when you get pulled over by police now free in Brooklyn Center

Brooklyn Center is where Daunte Wright was fatally shot by police during a traffic stop in April 2021.
Tyrre Burks, founder and CEO of Players Health

Minneapolis company that keeps track of athletes' injuries raises $28M

Founded in 2016, the company has so far raised more than $35 million in venture capital.
Co-founders and co-CEOs of Gravie Marek Ciolko, left, and Abir Sen.

With $75M in fresh capital, Minneapolis firm plans to expand its health benefits plan

Since its creation in 2013, Gravie has received roughly $148 million in venture capital investments.
President Joe Biden speaks in the South Court Auditorium at the White House on March 18.

Minnesota companies warned that threats of Russian cyberattacks are on the rise

President Joe Biden this week emphasized the immediate danger of Russian cyberattacks in recent statement.
Al Cornish, managing partner of MSP Equity Fund

Allianz, Xcel, Allina partner in $50M equity fund focused on diverse companies

Greater MSP and Gener8r also have joined in the effort, which will make investments in venture capital funds who agree to invest in Minnesota companies led by people of color.
Rowland Paint owner and CEO Jessica Rowland, front center, with employees Hannah McNew, Haley Ryan, Katie Woodling, Mande Keir and Rachel Corradi.

Pandemic opens window of opportunity, and Minnesota business ownership now at 10-year high

Whether COVID-19 spurred life changes or career disruption, it also allowed for easier access to technology for people to start businesses, experts say.
Nice Healthcare co-founders Thompson Aderinkomi, center, Genevieve Swenson, left, and Allison Santos, right.

Minneapolis-based Nice Healthcare raises $30M to expand in-home care

In addition to expanding into new markets, the money will be used to grow geographically within in the states Nice Healthcare is currently operating.
Branch CEO Atif Siddiqi

Branch pay technology company raises another $75M in venture capital

Branch has now raised $133 million from investors since launching the platform, which allows both employees and contractors to manage payments from an employer.
Jon Sabes, CEO of Foxo Technologies, which will become a public company by merging with a blank check company.

Minneapolis' Foxo Technologies makes deal to become a public company

Foxo — which offers a biotech test to help predict people's health patterns for life insurance companies — is merging with blank check company Delwinds Insurance Acquisition Corp. in a deal expected to close sometime in the upcoming second quarter.
Sezzle founders Charlie Youakim and Paul Paradis believe a merger with Zip will be a good cultural fit for the Minneapolis-based company.

Buy-now, pay-later company Sezzle will be sold in $352M deal

The merger of Australian company Zip and Minneapolis-based Sezzle is expected to close in the third quarter.
A rendering of the completed Seven Points redevelopment project in Uptown Minneapolis.

Owner of Uptown's Seven Points moving ahead with $150M redevelopment

Northpond Partners is partnering with Minneapolis-based Doran Cos. for the design and development of 264 apartments, a grocery and entertainment center.
Luke Wilcox founded Ethos to help investors gauge how their portfolio impacts social issues that matter to them, as well as whether controversial even

Minnesota entrepreneur sees traction for platform that tracks social investing

Ethos software's value-focus on ESG data sets lets investors measure their portfolio's impact on social good.
Wellbeats Chief Executive Jason Von Bank

Toronto company buys St. Louis Park's Wellbeats for $92M

Wellbeats will operate as a standalone company in Minnesota.
The Midtown Global Center in Minneapolis has two construction projects, including the Cultural Heritage and the Indigenous Food Lab.

Midtown Global Market 'not giving up,' set to expand cultural diversity

The slate of renovation projects include a culinary center concentrating on ancient grains of Africa, a professional Indigenous kitchen and training center, a salon and barbershop.
Seagate Technology’s Bloomington campus

Seagate expanding its Bloomington campus to meet global demand for data storage

The addition would add 45 fabrication workers per shift. Construction is expected to begin next month.
James Seils and Greg Kajewski, co-creators of BettorEdge, a social media platform where people can place bets on sports events, hope to get a big bump

For these Minnesota tech companies, Super Bowl betting means big business

More than 31 million American adults are expected to bet on this weekend's matchup between the Cincinnati Bengals and Los Angeles Rams.
Zeb Anderson created a free app, LegalQ,  that aims to make matching attorneys with clients more efficient.

Former Medtronic specialist creates free app that connects people with attorneys

State of Minnesota supports entrepreneur with $24,500 grant to grow platform.
Carlos Moncayo, CEO and co-founder of Inspectorio.

Minneapolis software firm raises $50M to expand compliance platform

Last summer, Inspectorio was selected for Apple's Impact Accelerator, which is designed to help grow Black and brown-owned companies that are focused on environmental solutions.
“I don’t think we’ll ever going back to a time when corporate office were the primary space for teams to collaborate and connect,” said Ale

Twin Cities co-working spaces get new lease on life

Membership is on the rise at these spaces as remote workers seek refuge from their homes, and others search for a place to hold in-person meetings.
Liz Giorgi, right, and Hayley Anderson, founders of Soona.

On-demand product photo company Soona raises another $35M

The Minneapolis provider of photo and video services for e-commerce is quickly adding employees and expanding its systems.
When I Work’s office space in Minneapolis. The company raised $200 million from investors in 2021.

Despite pandemic, investments in Minnesota startups top $1B again in 2021

For the third consecutive year, investors committed more than $1 billion to rising and privately owned Minnesota startups.
A corporate sponsorship Toyota decal on the helmet of Victor Rask of the Minnesota Wild.

Minnesota's pro teams find new source of revenue with ad placement on uniforms

The Minnesota Timberwolves, Wild and Vikings all entered new agreements for jersey and helmet ad placements in 2021.
From left, Minnesota Women’s Soccer Team assistant coach Jen Larrick, head coach Nicole Lukic, co-founder and president Andrea Yoch and assistant co

New second-division Minnesota women's soccer team raises over $1M through crowdsourcing

The strategy, while not uncommon, also gives the team a built-in fan base.
Heaven Bekele opened Intoto Ethiopian Market & Takeout in Rosemount in August.

New Ethiopian market in Rosemount serving growing Dakota County customer base

The store sells authentic Ethiopian spices, coffee, clothing, hair products, glassware and cookware, and injera, an Ethiopian flatbread.
Toby Weiss and Jessica Blosberg tied a tree on the roof of Shaneka Kelly’s car at Krueger Christmas Tree Farm Wednesday, Dec. 8, 2021 in Lake Elmo,

Christmas trees are running low in Minnesota

Despite higher prices and lower inventories, tree farms and retailers are reporting higher sales this year.
Chris Brooks and Paul Campbell are co-founders and general partners of Brown Venture Group, which recently received a sizable investment from Bank of

Bank of America latest to invest in Minneapolis VC fund focused on inclusivity

The bank's investment brings Brown Venture Group's inaugural close to the $50 million goal. The firm plans to finalize investments in nearly a dozen startups before the end of 2021.
Tommy Kramer tested a driver during a private fitting at 2nd Swing golf store in Minnetonka. Sales companywide jumped 15% in 2020 and are on pace to i

Minnesota's golf businesses are on the upswing during tough times

Golf courses, retailers and tech companies are continuing to see significant growth after a record-breaking 2020.