Bay Valley Tech and the Modesto Chamber of Commerce have launched a partnership to host monthly meetings with an aim towards connecting and growing the area’s technology sector.

Named Tech Connect, the monthly networking meetings are scheduled for the same time on the third Thursday of each month. All local entrepreneurs and business people are welcome to attend the tech-focused discussions. Tech Connect will be meeting online through Zoom. The Chamber plans to convert these monthly meetings to in-person events once Covid has subsided.

“Technology, analytics and digital marketing are increasingly key drivers of success in a wide range of industries including agriculture, healthcare, manufacturing and retail,” said Modesto Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Officer Trish Christensen. “We are thrilled to bring this technology-focused networking opportunity to businesses in our area. Attendees will find this forum informative, supportive and effective in helping companies understand and embrace the invaluable role that technology plays in improving profitability.”

The first Tech Connect was held in November and was led by Phillip Lan, president of Modesto-based Bay Valley Tech. The conversation focused on one of Lan’s primary goals of expanding the tech workforce in the Central Valley and helping the regions businesses become more tech savvy.

“The goal of Tech Connect is to help local companies increase revenue and profit growth by leveraging new technology and digital marketing strategies,” Lan said. “Tech Connect is a networking event that will facilitate tech knowledge sharing amongst local companies and elevate our collective tech IQ through monthly expert speakers.”

Tech connect is open to the broader community of entrepreneurs and businesses, even if they are not Chamber members. Lan said it could also be particularly beneficial to those who think their business doesn’t necessarily have a need for keeping apprised of the latest technology.

“Technology is pervasive in businesses and provides a key competitive advantage that is inescapable today,” Lan said. “The most profitable companies are utilizing data-driven decision making and automated solutions to increase revenue and margins. Non-tech companies in healthcare, retail, finance, manufacturing and agriculture are hiring software engineers at a feverish pace and becoming tech companies in order to win in the marketplace. You do not want to let your competitors become more tech savvy than you in today’s competitive landscape. Digital marketing and social media can also open new channels for revenue that can help your business in the current challenging environment.”

The next Tech Connect will be from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Dec. 17 and the guest speaker will be Economic Development Manager for the City of Modesto Tim Dutter. Spots for this first Zoom are limited, so register at: (bit.ly/nextekconnect).