Venture to bring B2G start-ups to D.C.
- By Dan Caterinicchia, Dan Caterinicchia
- Oct 18, 2000
DCVentureNet, which calls itself a business-to-government and e-government
accelerator, officially launched Tuesday night in Washington, D.C., with
the goal of establishing the nation's capital as a hotbed for high-tech
A wholly owned subsidiary of the government relations firm the Carmen
Group, DCVentureNet will provide selected B2G start-ups with office facilities,
financial backing and the technical support of staff and service partners,
as well as access to the parent company's government advocacy professionals.
In return, DCVentureNet receives stakes in the companies.
Stephen Goldsmith, a former mayor of Indianapolis, is managing director
of DCVentureNet. Goldsmith, whose day-to-day job is executive chairman of
NetGov.com, gained wide recognition during his two terms as mayor during
the 1990s for outsourcing many government services and helping to establish
Goldsmith said the first four businesses, which will be housed next
to the Carmen Group's offices in the Chinatown section of Washington, should
be selected in the next few weeks. He anticipates the selected companies
to have a federal slant, as opposed to a state and local focus, but that
is still being discussed.
"We're still evaluating that, as inside the B2G world needs further
refinement," Goldsmith told FCW. "We're trying to find a niche for the District..
The goal here is to give the District more of a high-tech start-up profile."
The Carmen Group has leased 18,000 square feet to serve as the permanent
home of DCVentureNet and is renovating the location to include a high-tech
infrastructure, including features such as access to dual T-1 Internet lines
and a suspended catwalk. That location will ultimately house 12 B2G and
e-government firms, and should be operational by April, 2001 Goldsmith said.
Other political heavyweights involved in DCVentureNet include Jack Kemp,
former secretary at the Department of Housing and Urban Development, who
is chairman of DCVentureNet's board of directors. H. Patrick Swygert, president
of Howard University, is also on the board. Mayor Anthony Williams was also
on hand Tuesday to welcome the new business to Washington.