Entering its second year, the Entrepreneur Connector Initiative pairs up-and-coming St. Louis entrepreneurs with experienced CEOs for a year of guidance. Drawing from a diverse body of member businesses, the Regional Business Council has matched fifteen member organizations with fifteen entrepreneurs. To help with identifying and selecting promising start-up leaders, the Entrepreneur Connector Initiative teamed up with Arch Grants, Brazen St. Louis, and Cultivation Capital.
The Initiative’s partners selected a variety of start-ups, ranging from new clean-energy technologies to fashionable swimwear designers. For example, start-up Fit Flavors provides healthy, pre-made meals, designed by a team of chefs and dieticians. Fit Flavors was selected by Brazen St. Louis, who focuses their efforts on promoting the growth of women-led businesses.
“With the Entrepreneur Connector Initiative, we really want to continue to contribute to St. Louis’s growing reputation for being a nurturing environment for start-ups,” said RBC President and CEO Kathy Osborn. To help identify quality start-up candidates, the Initiative has partnered with other St. Louis based organizations, who are “all committed to advancing St. Louis’s new, forward-looking economy,” she added.
To kick off the second year of the program, selected participants and their mentor counterparts will gather for the Initiative’s Opening Reception at Washington University’s Knight Center on June 21, from 3 to 5 pm. Participating entrepreneurs will benefit not only from direct coaching with highly-successful CEOs but also from the chance to grow their professional networks among RBC’s business community. Zach Winkler, founder of the SafeTrek app and an entrepreneur from last year’s Initiative, shared, “the Connector Initiative provided me with the necessary resources and expertise to build a strong foundation for my company.”