🎉 TechChicago Week at Drive Capital

AND Google’s Next Bet on the Midwest

In partnership with

64th Edition

📍 This Week’s Lineup:

🎉 TechChicago Week at Drive Capital

🔁 Google’s Next Bet on the Midwest

📊 Chart of the Week

📆 Events Around the City

🔙 Previous Editions of the Driver’s Seat

Before we dive in:

🔙 Highlights from Last Week

We hosted our ninth AI Tinkerers Chicago meetup at the Drive Chicago office. This AI community is now 500 members strong in 10 months. 👇🏽

I had an opportunity to speak at UChicago’s Polsky Deep Tech Ventures Summit. The event had over 350 attendees, 23 speakers, and a demo day with 22 startups in AI, quantum, and life sciences. 👇🏽

We partnered with Autonoma to host a Latin Builders in AI event, which took place entirely in Spanish. 👇🏽

🎉 TechChicago Week at Drive Capital

Here is the official lineup of events taking place at Drive Capital during TechChicago Week 2024

5 events:

1️⃣ Pre-Seed Between the Coasts

Join us on Monday July 22nd as early-stage founders and investors discuss the pre-seed funding landscape in non-coastal regions. 👇🏽

2️⃣ AI Tinkerers Chicago #10

On Tuesday July 23rd, we’re hosting the city’s most popular monthly AI meetup. Join us if you’re an AI engineer, researcher, or founder. 👇🏽

3️⃣ TechChicago Week Deep Tech Happy Hour

On Wednesday July 24th, we’re bringing together deep tech builders in AI, quantum computing, robotics, and biotech. And this event is a kickoff for the Deep Tech Hackathon that’s happening the day afterwards. 👇🏽

4️⃣ Product Invitational Chicago

On Thursday July 25th, we’re bringing together the top Product Managers in the Windy City for a collaborative roundtable.

5️⃣ TechChicago Week Healthcare Innovation Breakfast Panel

On Friday morning July 26th, we’re partnering with Architect Health and Lightbank to host a breakfast and fireside chat featuring Rushil Desai, CEO of Aetna Better Health of Illinois, and Ryan Fukushima, COO of Tempus. 👇🏽

🔄 Google’s Next Bet on the Midwest

Chicago happens to be the second city that Google expanded to. However, Google’s ambitions in the Midwest don't stop there.

Google recently broke ground on their upgraded Chicago office, which will house their employees.

And they’ve now set their sights on a new data center in our region, further solidifying their commitment to expanding technological infrastructure in the Midwest.

Midwest Hyperscalers

  • Google is building a $1B data center at the 2,500-acre Hunt Midwest Business Center in Kansas City.

  • This center is almost double their $575m project in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

  • Google’s current largest data center, located in Council Bluffs, Iowa, has seen nearly $5B in investments since 2007.

  • Meta, Facebook's parent company, is also constructing an $800m, 1 million-square-foot data center in Kansas City’s Golden Plains Technology Park.

Sustainable Compute in the Midwest

  • In Q4 2023, Google invested $11B in servers and data centers, majority of which are in the Midwest.

  • According to JLL, data generation by consumers and businesses is expected to double in the next five years compared to the past decade, driving the need for more data centers and energy-efficient designs.

  • Google's Kansas City project aims to draw power from the Beavertail Solar farm in Missouri, aligning with Google’s 2030 goal to run all its data centers and campuses on carbon-free energy.

Why Does This Matter

  • The Midwest has the energy infrastructure to support the rise of data center activity.

  • For this specific project, Google will need 400 megawatts of carbon-free energy to support the Kansas City data center. This same capacity could fuel 750 homes simultaneously.

  • The central location of Kansas City within the US will help reduce latency and push for better connectivity across the country.

📊 Chart of the Week

WSJ shared a blog on the top colleges and universities in the Midwest.

The schools were ranked on student outcomes — including measures of graduation rates and post-grad salaries, the learning environments, and the diversity of a school’s student and faculty.

The Midwest has access to many of the top colleges in the US, making it an attractive hub for innovation and technologists.

And a significant number of these graduates are opting to move to Chicago after graduation, establishing it as a thriving hub for talent.

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🗺️ Events Around The City

2024 Chicago AI Conference

  • Hosted by AI2030

  • Tuesday

  • RSVP

Early-Stage B2B SaaS VC/Founder Coffee Meetup

  • Hosted by Forum Events

  • Tuesday

  • RSVP

Summer Send Off

  • Hosted by Chicago Seed Off

  • Tuesday

  • RSVP

Chicago EdTech Happy Hour

  • Hosted by Chicago EdTech

  • Thursday

  • RSVP

AI Innovation Summit

  • Hosted by 1871

  • Thursday

  • RSVP

  • Free directly to this email if you’re interested in a complimentary ticket.

Chicago Web3Con

  • Hosted by AI203

  • Friday

  • RSVP

🗞 Latest Editions:

#60 - Water Innovation in Chicago

👋 See you next week!

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