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2021 IMPACT REPORT

A LOOK BACK AT AN INCREDIBLE YEAR

Here’s what you can find.

efactory in Springfield, MO

OUR STORY

Inside a former turkey processing plant in downtown Springfield, something special is happening.

We’re a business incubator, training center, support network and incredible place to be. We opened our doors in 2013 with one goal in mind: to serve as a one-stop-shop for entrepreneurs, innovators, and business owners throughout Southwest Missouri.

Today our services cover all the bases – everything from office space for growing companies to expert business consulting and training through the Missouri SBDC at MSU.

We’re proud to be part of the IDEA Commons district, Missouri State University’s vision for an urban innovation park.

CONNECTING ONE-ON-ONE WITH OUR REGION'S

JOB CREATORS

Starting and growing a business isn’t easy. Every day our programs connect with current and prospective business owners, offering no-cost, confidential, one-on-one consulting that helps businesses start and grow on solid footing.

We continue to find new and innovative ways to connect with business owners throughout the region. Consultants make scheduling easy through a simple click of a button and offer in-person and virtual consultations to meet the needs of business owners and entrepreneurs.

Offering both in-person and virtual meeting options made it easier than ever for entrepreneurs and business owners throughout Southwest Missouri to access critical services.

Business consultants with the Missouri SBDC at MSU regularly consult with clients on topics including:

SUPPORTING MISSOURI'S
CHILDCARE PROVIDERS

Childcare plays a critical role in economic development. Working parents with young children need access to childcare to obtain and retain jobs. At the same time, childcare providers create a safe, nurturing, educational environment to help build our workforce of tomorrow.

Our team moved quickly to help providers across the state navigate disaster relief funding.

Childcare providers across the state continue to face many challenges as they care for children amid the pandemic. Increased expenses, staffing concerns, absences and more put strain on these providers who are vital in our communities. In response to this, the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education announced Child Care Relief Funds, designed to support existing centers and successfully start new centers.

As part of the program, childcare centers in Missouri were eligible for relief funding as well as business assistance through the Missouri SBDC’s statewide network. Our center took a lead role in this statewide effort, meeting one-on-one with childcare centers from across the state.

Statewide childcare centers engaged with the Missouri SBDC team to learn about and apply for Child Care Relief Funds, find new ways to optimize their business practices, and more. Our team is proud of this work, which ultimately helped childcare centers stay open and provide a critical service to families across the state.

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Unique Childcare Centers Assisted by Our Team
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Hours of One-On-One Consulting Provided to Childcare Centers

ADVANCING ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

IN SOUTHWEST MISSOURI

Our programs are laser-focused on advancing economic development in Southwest Missouri.

Whether it’s meeting with a business owner for one-on-one consulting, investing directly in an early-stage startup, or anything in between, we know these are the innovators who will move our region forward. Everything we do is designed to amplify their success.

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Investment Secured by Client Companies
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New Jobs Created by Client Companies
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Jobs Retained by Client Companies
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New Business Starts Assisted by Our Team

SUPERCHARGING
SOUTHWEST MISSOURI

The launch of Supercharge Southwest Missouri in the summer of 2021 allowed our offerings to be scaled throughout the region – reaching even more entrepreneurs and business owners.

The initiative was designed to address the significant challenges facing entrepreneurs, business owners, and innovators as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and to directly support the needs of building and sustaining an entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Through the grant funded program, participants anywhere in Southwest Missouri can unlock no-cost resources including business consulting; executive level mentorship networks; on-demand training; and office hours with attorneys, accountants and other professionals.

Supercharge Southwest Missouri is funded by a Missouri Building Entrepreneurial Capacity Program (MOBEC) grant award from the Missouri Technology Corporation.

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Organizations Have Signed on as Supporters

ENHANCING SKILLS THROUGH

EXPERT-LED TRAINING

We’re passionate about equipping current and prospective business owners with the skills needed to successfully start and grow a business. We delivered in-person, virtual and hybrid training programs throughout 2021 to help entrepreneurs bring their dreams to life.

Small businesses aren’t the only ones who benefit. We also offered ongoing leadership and professional development training to help organizations of any size address workforce challenges. These timely, expert-led sessions helped regional employers develop their leaders, improve team dynamics, and promote operational excellence.

Custom training solutions put our team’s deep expertise and broad network of experts to work for organizations across the region. Our team worked closely with dozens of custom training clients, including United Way of the Ozarks. Over the course of two days in November and December, we assisted in a training program for their regional nonprofits and community investment panel to announce their new Innovation Fund.

Whether you’re starting a new business or leading a growing team, our training programs cover everything needed to start, scale and respond to today’s ever-changing business landscape.

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Training Programs Held
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Hours of Training Facilitated
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Training Participants

SUPPORTING FEMALE FOUNDERS
AND BUSINESS LEADERS

Founded in 2016, Rosie helps support, assist and serve as an advocate network for current and prospective female founders, business owners and leaders in the Springfield region. Today the network has grown to more than 1,000 Rosie members along with 300+ male advocates, known as Brosies. Members gain access to business and professional development resources, events, board training, and more.

Appointments Project Training Equips Local Women to Apply, Serve on Public Boards & Commissions

In partnership with UnitedWE and The Appointments Project, Rosie hosted a civic engagement overview to encourage women in Southwest Missouri to consider public board or commission service. This training program provided women with the tools to discover, apply for, and ultimately serve on public boards and commissions at the city, county and state level.

Springfield Region Had Highest Participation in UnitedWE's Missouri Town Hall Initiative for Women

UnitedWE hosted a series of 11 town halls representing 13 regions across Missouri. Rosie members pushed the Springfield session to have the highest participation numbers in the entire state and allowed for in-depth discussion on issues related to entrepreneurship, running for office, broadband, childcare, and more.

WISER Conversations Highlight Women Excelling in Science, Entrepreneurship & Research

Rosie partnered with Missouri Cure’s WISER (Women in Science, Entrepreneurship & Research) as part of their statewide WISER Conversation series, events designed to showcase women uplifting Missouri’s economy. The June 2021 panel featured efactory Director Rachel Anderson and highlighted ways women can build influence and become thought leaders.

CONNECTING TO

TOMORROW'S WORKFORCE

Today’s students are tomorrow’s leaders. Our programs work closely with a variety of initiatives to engage with students and connect them to real-world learning experiences. These efforts impact nearly every grade level and academic discipline.

Expanded Partnership with GO CAPS Brings Four Strands of the Career Exploration Program to the efactory

The expanded partnership means nearly 70 high school juniors and seniors come to the efactory each day to immerse themselves in the Business & Entrepreneurship, IT & Software Solutions, Engineering & Manufacturing and Teacher Education strands. Centers for Advanced Professional Studies (CAPS) programs are nationally recognized, innovative high school programs. Students fast forward into their future and are fully immersed in a professional culture, solving real-world problems, using industry standard tools, and are mentored by employers, all while receiving high school and college credit.

Course Projects Pair MSU Students with Businesses for Tangible Takeaways

Our team worked with more than a dozen Missouri State University classes in 2021, pairing hundreds of students with local business clients for hands-on projects. These projects gave businesses fresh insights while providing students with real-world experiences. Undergraduate and graduate level classes worked on projects related to accounting, human resources, marketing, management, and more.

Internship Pipeline Connects Employers to a Talented Pool of Local Students

We leverage our broad network of business clients and corporate partners to connect local students to meaningful internships and employment opportunities. We gather hiring needs, feedback on job skills, and more from local employers and in turn share and assist in matching with Missouri State University’s academic departments, career service professionals, and more.

FLEXIBLE WORKSPACE OPTIONS

Incubator Offices Remain Fully Occupied

Nearly 40 private offices remained full, leased to early-stage companies working in health sciences, logistics and supply chain management, manufacturing, and technology.

Increased Demand Prompts Coworking Expansion

A coworking expansion in June increased our capacity to serve remote workers, solopreneurs, non-profit leaders and more. An additional 1,000 square feet was outfitted and occupied across the hall from our original coworking Room.

Meeting Space Options Solve Needs for Local Businesses

Extensive A/V updates made possible through CARES funds distributed by the Missouri Dept. of Economic Development and Greene County made our meeting spaces a popular solution for local businesses. We hosted strategic offsites, board meetings, and more.

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Square Feet of Leasable Workspace,
All Fully Occupied
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Unique Coworking Members on
Monthly Plans or Day Passes
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Community Groups Served by
Meeting & Event Space Options

EXPANDING OUR FOOTPRINT

Our programs and physical footprint have continued to grow in recent years. After a successful expansion on the second floor of the Robert W. Plaster Free Enterprise Center in 2020, work got underway on the last portion of unfinished space within the building.

Renovations Wrap in June 2021 to Debut the Jay Wasson Idea Loft

The work involved dramatic renovations to the building’s previously untouched western mezzanine level. After 18 months of construction, the space was unveiled as a modern training and flexible use space known as the Jay Wasson Idea Loft.

The space has already hosted an exciting mix of in-person, hybrid and virtual training events for business owners and leaders throughout the region. The Jay Wasson Idea Loft is also available for use by members of our corporate partner program and available for rent to community members.

The 4,000+ square foot training and event space is outfitted with state-of-the-art technology and is capable of hosting groups of 200+ attendees. This exciting project was made possible through generous support from Jay Wasson, member of Missouri State University’s Board of Governors and former Missouri Representative and Senator.

BACKING ENTREPRENEURS AND

ACCELERATING GROWTH

We’re proud to be the region’s leading resource for entrepreneurs and technology startups. Our accelerator program gives startups the edge they need to reach the next level, helping companies shave years off their roadmap to customers and profitability.

Cohort 5’s Demo Day in November featured exciting announcements from three incredible companies. Founders unveiled new partnerships, expanded user bases, and more to a crowd full of community leaders and investors.

Board of Directors

Dr. Jim Baker, Missouri State University
Dan Brewer, Brewer Science
Dan Cobb, Entrepreneur
Tamara Conn, O’Reilly Auto Parts
Erin Danastasio, Hatch Foundation
Jason Gage, City of Springfield
Gary Gibson, City Utilities

Amanda Hedgpeth, CoxHealth
Sandy Howard, Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce
Brent Hubbard, Mercy
Kimberly A. Prater
Gary Schafer, BKD CPAs & Advisors
Krisi Schell, SRC Holdings Corporation
Clif Smart, Missouri State University

CORPORATE PARTNERS

Innovation Champion

Executive Partners

Supporting Partners

Affiliate Partners

Get In Touch

efactory@missouristate.edu
417-837-2600

Robert W. Plaster Free Enterprise Center
405 N. Jefferson Avenue, Springfield, MO 65806

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Missouri State University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action/Minority/Female/Veterans/Disability/Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity Employer and Institution. The Missouri SBDC at MSU is funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration and is a University of Missouri Extension partner.