Hudson 1869 Group
With a nickname like "Nomad," you can guess I've seen it all. Originally from England, I've lived in Dublin, Amsterdam, Paris, Bangkok, Hong Kong, and New York. I've visited almost 60 different countries and never settled anywhere. So when I first visited Omaha in 2004, I was surprised to find it wasn't what I expected. It's not all about football, corn and cows.
Entrepreneurship, for me, is a combination of two key ingredients: passion and discipline. Both come from people, and the people in Omaha are key. They have a pioneering spirit and amazing work ethic. I was so blown away, I packed up my corporate life in Manhattan and moved to the Cornhusker State.
The landscape here might be unexciting, but it's a low-cost environment and there's a great collaborative spirit among business owners. Put those things together and you have a very powerful startup environment.
In the last five years, I've started five businesses under a holding company, Hudson 1869 Group. Perhaps the most well known by locals is Nomad Lounge, an old warehouse turned part art gallery, part upscale event venue and part nightclub in Omaha's historic and trendy Old Market district.
I'm so impressed with the entrepreneurial potential here that I'm even starting a business to help other businesses. Called Halo Creative Capital, the company is founded on the belief that Omaha can be a Silicon Valley of the future. It may always be a bit smaller, but this is a city that has the potential to generate some really great businesses. -Annalyn Censky
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