Video game enthusiasts often cite creation hubs such as Seattle, Orlando and Austin, but a state that pops up on chat screens these days is Wisconsin. Learn more about state gaming companies and even play with some of their products Wednesday, Nov. 8, to kick off the Wisconsin Early Stage Symposium at Madison’s Monona Terrace Convention Center.

Panelists for the 8:30 a.m. roundtable are Tim Gerritsen, chief operations officer of Lost Boys Interactive and formerly of Irrational Games and Bioshock Infinite; Ben Kvalo, founder and chief executive officer of Midwest Games and formerly an executive with Netflix, where he helped to build Netflix Games from the ground up; and Brian Raffel, co-founder and vice president of Raven Software, which is among one of the oldest gaming companies in Wisconsin.

Conference attendees will be able to play video games provided by the panelists throughout the day in the exhibit area.

Registration is open by clicking here.

“The video game industry is valued at $214 billion overall and global revenue is projected a $365 billion this year,” said Tom Still, president of the Wisconsin Technology Council, which produces the conference. “ recently reported Wisconsin is fifth among the 50 states for game designer opportunities. We look forward to hearing about trends and incentives that can help bring more gaming companies and designers to the state.”

The conference will also feature:

  • National keynote speakers and targeted panel discussions featuring leading entrepreneurs, investors and others tied to the tech sector making an impact nationwide.
  • The 10th annual “Excellence in Entrepreneurial Education” award presentation and luncheon.
  • Exhibit hall showcasing innovative Wisconsin companies.
  • A Nov. 8 conference reception, two luncheons, two breakfasts and other networking opportunities, including an investors-only dinner.

The Tech Council produces the conference. Sponsors thus far include: 100state, Aberdean Consulting, Advocate Aurora Health, Amazon, ATC, Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals, AT&T, Baird Capital, Baker Tilly, BDO, City of Fitchburg, CLA (CliftonLarsonAllen), Customers Bank, DeWitt, EUA, Exact Sciences, Findorff, First Business Bank, Foley & Lardner, Godfrey & Kahn, HealthX Ventures, Husch Blackwell, Idea Fund of La Crosse, In Business Magazine, Insperity, Isthmus Project, KW2, Lost Boys Interactive, Madison Development Corp., Madison Gas & Electric, Makin’ Hey! Communications, Marquette University, Michael Best, Microsoft, Morgridge Institute for Research, N29 Capital Partners, Neider & Boucher, One City Schools, ORIN Technologies, Quarles & Brady, Raven Software, Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren, RSM US, Ruder Ware, Sadoff E-Recycling & Data Destruction, State of Wisconsin Investment Board, SustainableHR PEO, TDS, Tech Council board member Susan Healy, Technology Entrepreneurship Office at UW-Madison, Technology Innovation Center – Milwaukee, UMOS One Workforce – TechStars, University Research Park, UWM Research Foundation, UW-Madison Computer Sciences, UW-Madison Office of Business Engagement, Venture Investors, Versiti, Virent, von Briesen & Roper, Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation, Wisconsin Center for Manufacturing & Productivity, Wisconsin Counties Association, Wisconsin Economic Development Corp., WIPFLi, Wisconsin Dept. of Financial Institutions, Wisconsin Historical Society, Yahara Software, and Ziegler Alternative Investments.

To learn more about sponsorship information, please reach out to Angela Schlobohm at