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January 10, 2019 Newsletter
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Montana High Tech News

Figure’s first year:

$50 million California FinTech startup brings new tech, dozens of jobs to Helena and Bozeman

Figure’s Bozeman team shares a moment in their temporary office space in August 2018. Photos by Katy Spence/MHTBA

By Katy Spence

2018 was a big year for Figure.

Not only did the company raise about $50 million in a Series A round, but it introduced two new products and grew to 103 employees nationwide — 19 of whom are in Helena and 11 of whom are in Bozeman — with plans to further expand their Montana team.

Oh, and the company was founded.

It doesn’t look like things are slowing down anytime soon for the new FinTech company, which also has locations in Reno and San Francisco, and has continued plans for hiring and expanding offered services.
 

What they’re about: Figure leverages new technology and AI to make home equity financing faster, more secure

In February 2018, Mike Cagney, the founder and former CEO of SoFi, co-founded Figure in San Francisco with a team of entrepreneurs and finance experts including Alana Ackerson, Cynthia Chen, June Ou, and Sara Priola. Figure uses artificial intelligence, advanced analytics, and other technology to provide home equity solutions for their clients. One component ensures that when an asset, such as a loan or debt, is transferred, it’s exactly what it appears to be.

Matt Conroy, senior VP of engineering for Figure, compares buying an asset through Figure to buying a house: If the house is advertised as fully clean and furnished, that’s what you should expect to find. On top of that, you’ll have access to all the information about the house, such as previous owners and maintenance history.

Nate Lampert, people operations for Figure in Bozeman, said the company aims to be able to originate, trade, and secure loans and assets, as well as improve liquidity for clients and reduce some of the costs that come with traditional lending.

Figure’s flagship product, the Figure Home Equity Loan Plus, can be used for a variety of purposes, including home improvement projects, debt consolidation, or major purchases. Figure originated their first loan at the end of July. Since then, Figure has received more than 10,000 applications for home equity loans.

Read More

Member News:

Cognizant is 'All-In Missoula,' announces consultant trainee program 

ATG Consultant Trainees will make $14/hour during their 12-week training session. Photo via ATG.
Advanced Technology Group (ATG) has announces a new training opportunity with their parent company, Cognizant. 

ATG Consultant Trainees will completing a 12-week specialized training program with areas of focus in Business Essentials, Consulting, Systems Analysis and Design, Data Analytics, Project Management, Information Infrastructures, and more! This training program will also focus on cloud and IT basics with an emphasis on the Salesforce Platform.

Upon successful completion of the training program, trainees will be guaranteed a job interview where they could be placed within various roles and projects in Missoula, MT.

Learn more and apply now.

Apply to be Montana's 2018 Exporter of the Year

The Montana District Export Council (MDEC) is seeking nominations for the 2018 State of Montana Exporter of the Year Award. This award recognizes a Montana firm that has made a significant contribution to the economic growth and prosperity of the state through its international marketing activities. All Montana firms that sell products or services in foreign markets are encouraged to apply.  You may apply on behalf of your own company or nominate another company you feel is worthy of the award.

Download the official Montana Exporter of the Year nomination form here and submit to Angelyn DeYoung at ADeYoung@mt.gov by February 15, 2019.

If you have any questions about the nomination process, please contact one of the DEC officers below:

The Montana DEC will support Montana exporters and provide a collective Montana exporter voice to advise on export education needs and disseminate education opportunities to its collective networks.  The Montana DEC will also advise policy makers on export policies under consideration and provide suggestions for future legislation.

Apply Now

Register for the 2019 Economic Outlook Seminar

Registration is now open for 44th Annual Economic Outlook Seminar: Facing the Challenge of Affordable Housing. This half-day seminar features national and state economic outlooks, industry presentations, and a roundtable discussion on housing.  Outlook sectors will include health care, tourism, real estate, forest industry and energy. For the first time, EOS 2019 will include the outlook for high-tech industries and start-ups.

The Missoula program will be introduced by UM President Seth Bodnar and will feature a discussion of the outlook for tech industries with Tom Stergios (ATG, a Cognizant company) and Startups with Paul Gladen (Blackstone Launchpad).

Regular tickets include the half-day seminar, the 2019 Montana Economic Report, lunch and a one-year subscription to Montana Business Quarterly. Discounts available for university faculty, staff, and students.
 

Schedule:

HELENA
January 29, 2019
Great Northern Hotel

GREAT FALLS
January 30, 2019
Hilton Garden Inn

MISSOULA
February 1, 2019
Hilton Garden Inn

BILLINGS
February 5, 2019
Doubletree

BOZEMAN
February 6, 2019
The Commons
(Live webcast available)
BUTTE
February 7, 2019
NorthWestern Energy General Office

KALISPELL
February 12, 2019
Hilton Garden Inn

SIDNEY
March 12, 2019
USDA Agricultural Research Services

MILES CITY
March 13, 2019
Sleep Inn & Suites

BIG SKY
March 14, 2019
Warren Miller Performing Arts Center
Learn more and register to attend.

Big Sky Dev Con 2019 Request For Proposals

Rollie Goodman, a data scientist at Workiva, spoke at Big Sky Dev Con 2018 about how machine learning techniques have been used to solve problems in the domain of technology transfer at MSU TechLink, and broader lessons that may be gleaned from that experience. Photo by Troy Carter/TechLink.

It's time to submit presentation proposals for Big Sky Dev Con. This year's conference will be on Saturday, June 8 at The Commons in Bozeman, MT. To submit your presentation idea, please fill out this form

The deadline for proposal submission is Feb 8. If you have questions, please  reach out to one of the BSDC Organizers at organizer@bigskydevcon.org

More details about this year's conference to follow soon.

Montana High Tech Business Alliance, ATG, onX: Business Group Upbeat on Montana Tech Industry's Future (US News, Flathead Beacon, AP, Idaho Business Review, Washington Times, Connecticut Post, Lewistown Tribune, Idaho Statesmen, The News Tribune, Fox 28 Spokane)
Montana High Tech Business Alliance, ATG, onX, Next Frontier Capital, Orbital Shift, Clearas Water Recovery: Tech growth: Missoula, state gain ground in attracting venture capital investments (Missoula Current)
Montana High Tech Business Alliance, ATG, onX, Inimmune Analysis: Montana high-tech industry on pace for record year (Missoulian)
Montana High Tech Business Alliance, ATG: Under Cognizant, ATG of Missoula sees big year in 2019, “aggressive” job growth (Missoula Current)
TechLink: Hottest technology opportunities from the Department of Defense (TechLink)
ATG, Missoula Economic Partnership: Housing, jobs and development: Engen sees bright year ahead for Missoula (Missoula Current)
KOA, Audience Awards: Can Do: Meet Five Of Montana's Outstanding Women Entrepreneurs (MTPR)
LMG Security: Helena, Lewis and Clark County IT department to get cybersecurity assessment (KTVH)
Missoula Economic Partnership: MEP announces new director of economic development Julie Lacey (MEP), MEP names Lacey as new director of economic development (Missoula Current)
Montana World Trade Center: Can Do: Montana World Trade Center Opening A Worldwide Audience For Montana Businesses (MTPR)
Next Frontier Capital: Netflix hunting show opens headquarters in Bozeman (Bozeman Daily Chronicle)
Zinovo: Entrepreneur opening RV rental at Bozeman airport (Bozeman Daily Chronicle)
Bozeman airport: JetBlue Lands in Big Sky Country with New Flights between Bozeman, Mont. And Southern California (OA online)

Upcoming Events: 

Business Transition and Succession Planning - Bozeman. Jan. 17, 8:30 - 12:30. MMEC, 2310 University Way, Bldg 2-2, Bozeman. This ½ day workshop is designed to help business owners begin creating their own specific paths to higher valuation. Business owners, consider: where you are going in the next 12-18 months, and how you will get there; what risks threaten the outcome(s) you seek, and how you will manage them; what agile strategies will you implement to take you and your business to your desired outcome(s); and how your team is doing, and what will improve its function. Learn more and register.
1 Million Cups Bi-Weekly Meeting - Missoula. Jan 23. Meets the first and third Wednesday each month at 9:00 am at The Loft, Missoula. 1 Hour Free Parking across the street in the city parking garage. Start your morning with coffee and start your business with 1MC Missoula, a place to percolate your startup. Entrepreneurship runs through it. For more information visit the website or Facebook page.
Women's Ascent Retreat 2019 - Whitefish. Jan 23 – Jan 25. Ascent Retreat 2019 is for female entrepreneurs and business leaders who need consultations around start-up strategy (scaling, exiting, pitching), organizational culture development (HR, people development), personal & leadership coaching, and health and wellness coaching. Gain insights from women who have worked in esteemed positions in Nike, Patagonia, and BlogHer. In addition, connect with other women who have been in your position from starting up to CEO-ing. Learn more.
Hellgate Venture Network meeting - Missoula. Jan. 24, 4:30pm, Stockman Bank, 6th Floor 321 W. Broadway, Missoula MT 59802. HVN facilitates informal networking among entrepreneurs and advisers engaged in building growth businesses in Montana. Learn more on the HVN Facebook page.
2019 Economic Outlook Seminars - Statewide. Seminars begin Jan. 29 and run through March 24. This year’s Economic Outlook examines the challenges of affordable housing. EOS 2019 will travel to ten cities across the state and provide a live webcast for other regions. This year, the seminar will visit Helena, Great Falls, Missoula, Billings, Bozeman, Butte, Kalispell, Sidney, Miles City and Big Sky, Montana. Find registration information and the full meeting schedule on the website.
Montana Code School Full-Time Course - Missoula & Bozeman. Full-time class dates: Feb. 4, 2019 – April 26, 2019; May 20, 2019 – Aug. 9, 2019; Sept. 16, 2019 – Dece. 6, 2019, Monday-Friday, 9 am - 5 pm. Part-time class dates: April 9, 2019 – Sept. 24, 2019; Oct. 8, 2019 – April 14, 2020; Location: Missoula & Bozeman, Tuesday & Thursday for 6 months, 6pm – 9pm + 1 immersive weekend a month. Financing available. Montana Code School’s full-time immersive program gives you the skills and fundamentals you need to land a job as a full-stack Jr. Web Developer. Contact 406-219-1392 or talk@montanacodeschool.com. Learn more here.
UM Involvement Fair - Missoula. Feb. 6. 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., University of Montana, University Center Ballroom. Find interested and qualified UM students for: Internships, Volunteer Opportunities, Independent Study, and Research Assistantships. Every year, nearly 50% of UM students participate in pre-professional experiences such as internships, engage in service learning and volunteering, go abroad, and contribute to research. Attending the UM Involvement Fair is free and gives your organization the opportunity to connect to these students. Learn more and register to attend as a student or an employer.
1 Million Cups Bi-Weekly Meeting - Missoula. Feb. 6. Meets the first and third Wednesday each month at 9:00 am at The Loft, Missoula. 1 Hour Free Parking across the street in the city parking garage. Start your morning with coffee and start your business with 1MC Missoula, a place to percolate your startup. Entrepreneurship runs through it. For more information visit the website or Facebook page.
1 Million Cups Monthly Meeting - Bozeman. Feb. 6. Meets the first Wednesday of the month at 7:30 am at Red Tractor Pizza, Bozeman. Creating conversation around Bozeman startups, business development, and economic growth in the most entrepreneurial state in the nation (plus, coffee). For more information and application to present, visit the website.
2019 GRIT High School Trades Workshops - Missoula. Registration forms for Welding are due Feb. 25, 2019; Registration forms for Auto Mechanics are due April 1, 2019. This winter and spring, the GRIT (Girls* Representing in Trades) program is offering three 20-hour workshops for high school students in Missoula and western Montana! These in-depth workshops will cover carpentry, welding, and auto mechanics! In each workshop you’ll gain tangible skills through hours of hands-on practice, work as a team to complete projects and solve problems, build confidence and leadership skills, make new friends, and have lots of fun!  For more information and registration, visit this website.
Big Sky Dev Con - Bozeman. June 8, The Commons, Bozeman. A Montana state-wide tech conference for developers hosted by Montana Programmers. More information will be released on the website as it is made available.
Past Newsletters: 
12/27/2018 - 2018 Year in Review- 5 Trends Indicate Rosy Outlook for Montana's Tech Scene in 2019; Next Frontier Capital invests in new Bozeman company
12/13/2018 - High Tech Companies Partner with UM; New member directory; MWTC supports GDPR compliance; ChickTech inspires girls to pursue tech careers
11/29/2018 - Photos: FIB Missoula reception; CTA celebrates 80 years; Zoot on Can-Do podcast; Volunteer with ChickTech; Last day regular price on Digital Forensics
11/15/2018 - Montana CEOs discuss K-12 computer science education; Perficient acquires Elixiter; atgSHE and onX host inclusivity event; ChickTech to host Dec event
Click to view more past newsletters.
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Montana High Tech Business Alliance
1121 E Broadway St, Suite 108
Missoula, MT 59802
 
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Montana High Tech Business Alliance · 1121 E Broadway St, Suite 108 · Missoula, MT 59802 · USA