90 Seconds About Us
We keep inventors on the right track with weekly CIO member networking events, pro bono patent programs, CIO Inventors Academy seminars featuring industry expert guest speakers and our CIO volunteer prototyping team. The CIO is the only organization of its kind in the State of Illinois providing access to the untapped talent which is needed to fuel the engine that is driving innovation in the State of Illinois as well as creating jobs and state revenues.
More about CIO Memberships
Giving the best resources for inventors to Chicago, IL
Chicago Inventor Organization
Our History and Purpose
The Chicago Inventors Organization’s (CIO) vision includes being the premier provider of positive, affordable, credible resources to inventors whose products range across all markets including digital apps. Recognized by the US Patent and Trademark Office, our organization is the only organization of its kind in the Chicagoland area. Our previous Conferences have been attended by more than 5,000 people with presenters from Los Angeles, San Francisco, New Jersey, Philadelphia, Charlotte, Tampa, and Chicago. We are building on the tremendous energy of monthly meetings, boot camps, weekly member meetings and our new home at LACUNA LOFTS as we enhance the diversity of the investor base developed over the last ten years.
As a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based in Chicago, we provide underserved independent inventors and innovators with the required resources to bring their inventions to fruition. Inventor development is facilitated by providing foundational knowledge and entrepreneurial skillsets to help inventors learn to achieve their goals profitably. We guide and encourage each member to acquire, at the very least, a patent, copyright/trademark protection, a prototype or drawing of their concept, and a project and marketing plan. The need is vast in that the underserved inventor and entrepreneur is typically left to fend for him or herself without the financial means to accomplish his/her goals. Inventors are left to identify many items such as:
Where do I start?
Whom do I contact to start the patent process?
Do I need a patent, trademark or copyright? If so, what are the specifics of each?
How do I find a manufacturer and develop cost projections, pricing, etc? and
How do I get into the big box stores?
We keep inventors on the right track with monthly educational meetings featuring industry expert guest speakers and entrepreneurial skillset workshops. The CIO is the only organization of its kind in the State of Illinois providing access to the untapped talent which is needed to fuel the engine that is driving innovation in the state of Ilinois as well as creating jobs and state revenues.
The Importance of Having a Great Pitch
To many people, the idea of pitching is intimidating. But for you to succeed in business or clinch a leadership position, having a great pitch is not an option. A great pitch is concise, convincing and delivered in a self-assured manner. For this reason, making a great pitch is not a walk in the park but a very rewarding experience when done correctly. Securing funds for business is the main goal of a great pitch. However, people seeking leadership positions, especially in political positions require awesome pitching.
A great pitch is simply the gateway to securing funds or capital for business expansion or start-up. Financial institutions have been providing the bulk of business funding for long period. To secure the funds from banks and other financial institutions, developing a convincing, pragmatic and feasible business plan is mandatory. Currently, angel investors have become an important source of business funding. This is where a great pitch comes in.
Just like a business plan, a great pitch should be compelling and practical. For this reason, you must have a thorough and in-depth knowledge of your industry and the idea you are selling to angel investors. This includes knowledge of your target market, the particular problem that your idea is solving, anticipated revenues, the competition, rival products and uniqueness of your idea among others. In this regard, a great pitch must convince the investor that his money is in safe hands.
A great pitch is crucial for selling your brand. It essentially reflects your strategic plan for your product. For this reason, a great pitch should always be fresh and in tandem with the current trends in the market. In most cases, the success of a brand is determined by the effectiveness of the pitch. From experience, numerous brands fail not because of their inherent weakness, but because of poor pitching. This underlines the importance of having a great pitch to promote your brand.
The ultimate objective of a pitch is to impress the panel so that they can buy your idea. You should always bear in mind that the panelists are human after all, not matter how intimidating they might seem. In short, it is a business and you should never take it personally. In this regard, the importance of a great pitch in securing business funding and promoting your brand cannot be overemphasized.
Chicago Inventors Organization pitch contest presents a good opportunity for potential entrepreneurs and investors to sell their ideas to angel investors. By participating in this annual contest, investors, entrepreneurs and the larger public at large are accorded the chance to commercialize their ideas and inventions.
The annual contest provides successful contestants with appropriate and affordable resources to take their ideas to the next level. One of the most outstanding attributes of the annual contest is that it is open to a wide range of inventions and ideas. In this regard, developing a great pitch is all that separates your potential idea or invention from being the next big thing.
Importance of Inventors Organizations
Thеrе аrе professional organizations іn еvеrу field. But аrе thе yearly dues worth іt tо join? That’s thе question еvеrу thriving entrepreneur or professional asks whеn he/she contemplates аbоut joining а professional organization, еѕресіаllу inventors.
Whіlе еасh аnd еvеrу organization іѕ different, thе short answer іѕ mоѕt often: YES. Especially, іf you’re already an investor or you are planning to reinvent an existing product.
Inventors’ organizations саn аlѕо offer insight іntо hоw thе industry works аnd hоw tо navigate it, aѕ wеll as professional development courses.
How to be prepared to work with an oversea manufacturer.
Having the right mindset to grow your business.
An Exceptional Intellectual Property (IP) panel moderated by Loeb & Loeb’s Partner Adam Kelly will also address the latest issues in the Patent Reform Act and the Internet of Everything’s web of potential legal pitfalls associated with implementing IoT, including technology licensing issues and use of open-source software.
There will be presentations on Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (Drones) Business Models/Applications by Accenture’s Global Director of Legal Services Melvin Flowers and UAV Services Lead Paul Barsamian and Newovo Plastics CEO Carl Dumele speaking on 3D Printing – The Future of Manufacturing.
As part of the conference, there will also be an Innovators Market providing an opportunity for innovators to establish relationships with buyers seeking unique products for national and new emerging markets, and network with patent attorneys, prototype developers, internet technology and marketing consultants who can assist them with navigating the invention process.
An Inventor Pitch to Investors Contest will be opened to the General Public which will allow the top five (5) product submission finalists to pitch their idea to Angel Investor Judges and a live audience for a chance to win several prizes such as “Mentoring from A Heartland Angels Investor – One of Chicago’s Leading Angel Investor Groups”!
While the swift cut-and-parry of creation is the heart of an inventor’s life, there is another important component – networking. Let’s face it; no matter how great your invention may be, you can always benefit from talented professionals in your field that might be willing to lend a hand.
Maybe it’s that database programmer you’ve been scouring the earth for or that distributor you need to get your product on store shelves, or a patent attorney to make sure your intellectual property is protected.
The 2016 Chicago Inventors Conference is a must-attend if you are planning to move your business forward.