Are you interested in launching an innovation-driven business in Bloomington?
Indiana University Bloomington students, faculty and staff with an interest in starting their own company can apply to participate in the 2019-20 cohort of B-Start, a pre-accelerator program, to help launch their for-profit, innovation-driven business in Bloomington.
The five-month B-Start program includes:
- Individual mentoring by local entrepreneurs, business leaders and young professionals who have experience or interest in starting and scaling companies
- Group workshops and peer meetups to guide participants through the startup process
- Demo Day, B-Start’s final event in which entrepreneurs pitch their business plans to judges
The Bloomington Economic Development Corp. will accept applications between Aug. 26 and Sept. 20 from Monroe County residents to join the fifth annual B-Start cohort. B-Start is scheduled to run from September to March. Group workshops will take place on Tuesdays from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at various co-working and startup spaces.
Ellyn Sallee, project/development manager at the Bloomington Economic Development Corp., said a wide variety of entrepreneurs and startups have participated in B-Start throughout its history.
“B-Start has graduated 27 companies since it launched in 2015. Given great demand from past program applicants, this year we have already increased our mentor capacity, allowing us to accept more entrepreneurs into our program for the 2019-20 session,” Sallee said. “We are committed to advancing our community’s innovation-driven and high-growth companies, ultimately creating new jobs and strengthening Monroe County’s entrepreneurship ecosystem.”
Haven Software, founded by then-IU student Luke Mongin, won first place and $2,500 in the 2019 Demo Day competition. The company is a cloud-based software as a service platform that centralizes and manages all core functions of a small business. Hunger Curbed, founded by then-IU student Kennedy Brown and current IU student Zach Simunic, won second place and $1,500.
Women, minorities, veterans and members of other underrepresented groups are encouraged to apply. For more information and to apply for B-Start, please visit the program’s website.