Entrepreneurs flock to the Valley for CEA Innovate!

Autumn may offer up some cooler weather with the monsoons, but something even cooler that is happening in Arizona is the CEA Innovate! conference which is focused on the growing technology industry across the country.
Created by the Consumer Electronics Association to take a progressive look at the rising technology industry, CEA Innovate! is a three-day conference that mixes industry trends with some of the top minds in the field.
In an effort to aid both seasoned companies and startups, CEA Innovate! works to provide  attendees with the tools and knowledge to further advance in the technology sector.
The Phoenix event will be held from Sept. 30 to Oct. 2 at the Wigwam Resort in Litchfield, Arizona.
The conference kicks off with a mentoring hour that offers attendees one-on-one meetings with industry mentors from the CEA and firms such as Indiegogo, BDS Marketing and Caerus Ventures. The mentors will be available to help companies by offering advice and ideas, as well as giving feedback on industry trends and financial plans.
The rest of the first day is devoted to networking near the resort’s oasis pool. Events include icebreakers and an opening party that gives guests the opportunity to make new connections and catch up with old ones while dining on provided food.
Day two includes lectures on disruptive technologies, startup success stories and the conference’s highlight event — the Annual Member Meeting and Keynote Luncheon.

Atari Corporation founder Nolan Bushnell.

Keynote speaker Nolan Bushnell, founder of video game manufacturer Atari Corporation and Chuck E. Cheese Pizza Time Theater, is expected to discuss his latest book called “Finding the Next Steve Jobs,” which was designed to help companies find an industry game changer.
The tech entrepreneur, who was the one to give Apple founder Steve Jobs his first tech job, will share his thoughts and give advice on how companies can accomplish finding an outstanding employee at the conference.
Bushnell also recently launched a startup called BrainRush that incorporates his love of video games with education. Using high-velocity game-based learning, BrainRush teaches students subjects at a rate 10 times higher than the learning curve found in traditional classrooms. Along with this, the software also boasts a 90 percent retention rate, according to the CEA.
Other notable speakers throughout the conference include CNET Editor-in-Chief Lindsey Turrentine, Tech Cocktail CEO Frank Gruber and Guive Balooch, the global director of L’Oreal’s Connected Beauty Incubator.
The day closes with sessions on opportunities in 3D printing, the potential of wearable technology and a speech on raising investment for startups. Along with this, the CEA is offering more mentoring sessions as well as media training for both established companies and startups.
The CEA media training session will continue on Oct. 2 with CEA Senior Director of Communications Tyler Suiters offering insight into what reporters are looking for and how to share a company’s story effectively.
CEA Innovate! will close after two days of innovative learning and networking with a panel on the next five trends for technological innovation and a forecast of 2014 holiday sales.
The economic forecast will include insights from the CEA’s  top economists on what is currently trending and disrupting in the industry as well as the types of technology consumers are looking at this holiday season.
Interested parties can register for CEA Innovate! here.
Photos courtesy of CEA