On Friday, November 2nd, the Tippie School of Management Finance, Marketing, and Strategic Innovation Academies hosted a forum titled “I3 Forum: Transforming Tomorrow” at the Hotel Vetro in beautiful downtown Iowa City. The I to the power of three signifies integrity, innovation, and impact, for those who are uninitiated with this aspect of the branding for the college.
There were a number of very compelling speakers at the forum, including Brenda Fonseca. Ms. Fonseca currently serves as the COO of Appcore, a Des Moines, Iowa-based tech firm that specializes in cloud computing. As Chief Operating Officer, Ms. Fonseca is responsible for both strategic and operational functions at the company, along with day-to-day concerns. Among her foci, she aims to maximize the unique capabilities and potential of individual employees at the firm mainly through the streamlining of work process strategies. Naturally, these sort of responsibilities fit rather well into the Strategic Innovation Academy (of which I am a proud member) here at the Tippie School of Management.
Prior to coming to Appcore, Ms. Fonseca accumulated over 15 years of experience in the biotechnology sector, both managing and engaging neuroscience research laboratories at such institutions of higher learning as Northwestern University, the University of Washington, the University of Southern California, and last but certainly not least, the University of Iowa. (I freely admit that neuroscience research is a bit out of my realms of expertise.)
Initially when I heard the name Appcore, I errantly believed them to be an application-based firm. This is not the case. Instead, Appcore is an emerging smaller-scale player in the cloud computing space. However, “smaller-scale” does not imply that they do not directly compete (and win) against much larger players. Ms. Fonseca touched on how being a smaller player allows a company to demonstrate more agility, pivot faster, and win in a particular business segment. All and all, Ms. Fonseca’s talk was incredibly enlightening and inspiring. The industry insights were worth the price of admission alone.