Growing Prosperity

Jun 25, 2013 | Business & Economy, Business-Friendly Environment, Economy, Talent

How much control do we have as a community to create a vibrant local economy? As I noted before, there is a long list of issues and trends that can impact us that are beyond our control.

Fortunately, through the deliberate process of economic development, we can do a great deal to influence private sector investment in our area. We outline many of those actions at

One of the things we can do in our smart university town is ‘grow our own,’ meaning foster start-up companies. All cities can do this, of course, but we have a strong set of attributes and assets that makes it more likely in a place like Fort Collins.

One of those assets is the Rocky Mountain Innosphere, which is located on Vine Drive. The Innosphere is a business incubator. Its mission is to “accelerate the success of high-impact scientific and technology startup companies and promote the development of a regional entrepreneurial ecosystem in Northern Colorado.” Fancy words for ‘grow our own.’

While challenging to do, the simple concept is to identify promising start-up companies and provide the support they need through their early days. Not all of them make it and not all of the companies that do survive will become the next Apple. However, the support through the Innosphere improves their chances.

At this time, there are 34 companies in the Innosphere.

The Chamber’s Red Carpet Committee just held an event at the Innosphere this morning to honor them as Business of the Month. It was a reminder to me about what a great asset the Innosphere is for Northern Colorado. The Innosphere doesn’t guarantee that we’ll have a vibrant economy in the years ahead but it does let us focus on our own assets and the things we can control.

To learn more about the Rocky Mountain Innosphere go to