By Tim Ryan

Virginia Business has recently highlighted the vibrant startup scene with its Start Virginia issue.  Hampton Roads was highlighted for its innovative spirit and entrepreneurial successes that drive the region’s economic growth. The feature underscores the achievements of several local startups and key figures nurturing the ecosystem, demonstrating Hampton Roads’ position as a hub of innovation and opportunity.

Among the startups celebrated is VroomBrick, founded by Navy veteran Leland Remias. This Newport News-based real estate startup is a testament to the opportunities available to veteran entrepreneurs. Remias, leveraging his military discipline and an MBA from William & Mary, participated in the 2022 Veteran Startup Challenge, a five-week intensive boot camp, to kickstart his entrepreneurial journey.

Another standout is Magazine Jukebox, an innovative company that brings digital magazine subscriptions to waiting rooms and public spaces. This startup has garnered attention for its unique approach to delivering content, which reflects the diverse range of business ideas emerging from Hampton Roads.

The issue also highlights the contributions of Paul Nolde, managing director of 757 Collab, and Conaway Haskins, Vice President of Entrepreneur Ecosystems of Virginia Innovation Partnership Corporation (VIPC). Both leaders play pivotal roles in fostering a supportive environment for regional startups.

Paul Nolde’s work with 757 Collab, an accelerator program dedicated to nurturing early-stage companies, has provided entrepreneurs with resources, mentorship, and networking opportunities. His efforts have helped numerous startups scale and thrive, including several that have gained national recognition.

Conaway Haskins, through VIPC, focuses on connecting startups with critical funding and resources. VIPC’s initiatives aim to bridge the gap between early-stage companies and the investment community, ensuring innovative ideas have the financial backing to grow and succeed. Haskins’ leadership has been vital in strengthening the region’s innovation ecosystem.

Virginia Business’s coverage not only celebrates the individual successes of startups like VroomBrick and Magazine Jukebox but also highlights the collaborative efforts of leaders like Paul Nolde and Conaway Haskins in building a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem. Their combined efforts ensure that Hampton Roads remains a beacon of innovation, offering a supportive and resource-rich environment for startups to flourish.

As these stories illustrate, Hampton Roads’s future is bright. A growing number of entrepreneurs are transforming their ideas into successful ventures, supported by a community dedicated to fostering innovation and economic growth.

This story was inspired by Virginia Business’ articles “From Salutes to Startups” and “Ecosystem Insights.”