We’ve talked with enough small businesses and emerging companies to know that it is hard to get funding. Traditional loans are often difficult to obtain, and the other resources are scarce, non-existent, or as one entrepreneur said “not worth the time and effort for the potential payoff.” That leaves our best and brightest to move away from the region to chase their dreams. That leaves St. Louis with fewer entrepreneurs, fewer companies, and a stagnant environment in which to build a career.
We want that to stop.
By providing a place to showcase the talented entrepreneurs we have here in St. Louis and providing an alternative to receive funding, mentoring, and access to resources, we think we can help start to reverse that trend. And with more businesses creating more jobs, how can we not create a more dynamic St. Louis? With more companies doing progressive things that not only retain talent, but get national notice and brings new people to the region, how can we not make St. Louis a vibrant hub for emerging small business?
We also strive to do something else. It’s our belief that it takes a culture that accepts and nurtures budding small businesses. It takes a support group beyond finances to help someone take that big leap and chase their dream. Right now, the culture in St. Louis is starting to change. You once had to work for one of the big-name employers in town in you were to go anywhere in St. Louis. But now, we see the opportunity to provide another outlet. A place where small business entrepreneurship doesn’t scare your family, friends and neighbors to worry for you, but to celebrate you! To be genuinely excited by what you are doing and want to help in any way they can.
If everyone on your street ran a thriving small business that contributed and gave back to the community, think of how exciting that would be. Think of how much more dynamic St. Louis would be to live. So, with humble beginnings and tremendous aspirations, Fund St. Louis is creating a more dynamic St. Louis. One opportunity at a time.