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New citywide startup and innovation program launches in North Las Vegas

Posted at 8:40 AM, Jul 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-23 14:04:22-04

Nationally-recognized Innovation Collective is announcing the launch of its newest startup and innovation program, Innovation Collective: North Las Vegas.

Innovation Collective: North Las Vegas is a unique economic development initiative to help diversify the city’s economy by unlocking the creativity within North Las Vegas residents, business owners and entrepreneurs and unleashing it in a way that creates shared value for all. This includes working with them to rediscover their creativity, learn new technical and soft skills, build new companies, expand current companies and matchmake startups to larger brands.

“Creating and attracting industries beyond hospitality, tourism and gaming is a key component to diversifying the economy of North Las Vegas and our entire state,” said North Las Vegas Mayor John Lee. “More new money will be made in North Las Vegas than anywhere else in the region in the next 20 years, and small businesses and startups will play a big part in that.”

The initiative aims to connect with community members of all ages to help them begin to take first steps in unlocking their full potential. Examples of projects include guiding and advising a young innovator, Alex Knoll, who had an idea for an app that helps people with disabilities find employment, services and facilities that meet specific needs for mobility, vision, hearing and cognitive impairments. Since partnering with IC, Knoll developed The Ability App, marketed it through an interview with Ellen DeGeneres and by interviewing Apple CEO Tim Cook, and began distributing his innovative app, which helps people around the world.

Other projects include the Innovation Den, a building that houses more than 60 startups, after sitting vacant for 30 years. Many of those startups are working on projects that are creating the future of the robotics and AI industry.

Innovation Collective also currently operates in communities in Idaho, New York, Florida, California and Washington.

“We have been running our program for 7 years in several communities across the country and it never ceases to amaze me that in every community, there are great companies and incredibly innovative people who have been overlooked for years or didn’t believe they were creative or innovative,” said Nick Smoot, Founder and CEO of Innovation Collective. “Those same people go on to build companies that are changing the world and doing it from the communities they love. Sometimes they just need better access, mentorship, and encouragement to rediscover their potential.”

Innovation Collective: North Las Vegas launches at a perfect time to assist businesses as they find ways to modify operations in light of COVID-19.

“We know for many it is a difficult and uncertain time in the world, but it is during these times that some of the greatest companies in the world and most creative solutions have been invented,” Smoot added. “We know that the next steps of growth for North Las Vegas are crucial as we come out of this very difficult time, and Innovative Collective is proud to help the community recover.”