Mountain State native, tech pioneer talks ‘Education and Entrepreneurship’ at WVU

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Former president and chief executive officer of Intuit, Brad Smith offered a free “Education and Entrepreneurship” lecture at Vantage Ventures on the WVU campus Thursday.

Intuit is most identified with TurboTax and QuickBooks and is headquartered in Mountain View, California. Smith transformed the company from a software producer to a platform business model selling services in the cloud.

Smith says he has been successful by overcoming challenges and solving problems. much of what West Virginia is known for.

“The ability to adapt and overcome setbacks, that raw material is right here in West Virginia. Our people have always been our durable, competitive advantage,”Smith said,”What’s happened is, our history has proudly been in the mountains, our future is now connected in the cloud.”

Smith says up to 75 percent of people who make up the digital age don’t want to work for someone else, they want to start and build their own company.

“We’re trying to help the next generation say, build your idea, quickly have it go into a product market fit sort of prototype,”Smith said,”Have a group like Vantage help you through that process, get access to the right capital and we can help you bring that project to life, and it creates jobs right here in West Virginia.”

Additionally, he says this group of people don’t like long commutes, they want outdoor, affordable living and West Virginia meets all of those wants.

“We’re at a crossroads right now, where our historical accomplishments meet our future possibilities and you can feel the foot steps of success coming up behind us right now. The ideas are amazing, the talent is incredible, we’re underestimated no one expects see it so they aren’t keeping an eye on us and we’re about to come up with things the world hasn’t seen,” Smith said.

Smith adds all the tools needed for success are right here in the Mountain State and it’s a matter of time before a real breakthrough happens that will be felt around the world.