Supporting Startups in Southwest Missouri
Our accelerator program is a critical piece of our efforts to support entrepreneurship and innovation in southwest Missouri. The companies in Cohort 5 were selected from hundreds of applicants to receive a $30,000 investment along with customized training to position themselves for rapid growth.
The teams have been busy since the program kicked off in mid-July. Pitch practice, expert sessions, office hours and more have led to this. They’re ready to take things to the next level and we can’t wait to watch it happen.
Their success is Springfield’s success. At the efactory, we believe Springfield is the place where dreams really do come true. We believe in hard work, determination, collaboration, and good ideas. Community is who we are. Forward is where we’re going.
Agriculture is the heart of rural communities across the U.S. And like any other industry, farmers and ranchers have found themselves facing serious workforce challenges in recent years. AgButler is a mobile application that brings agriculture labor into the modern-day gig economy. Similar to ride sharing, the platform allows farmers to connect with available laborers filtered by location, experience, ratings and availability. The entire experience – from posting available work to being paid for completed labor – all lives within a secure structure organized in the app.
The platform has taken off, with active users in more than 40 states. At Demo Day the team announced the release of new tools to make life easier for users, including in-app messaging and a built-in calendar feature. In recent weeks AgButler has seen 113% user growth and has nearly 2,000 active users on the app.
New industry partnerships will drive continued growth on the platform. AgButler announced new partnerships in place with local agricultural leaders including Hammons Black Walnuts, S&H Farm Supply and Farm Journal. The team has partnered with universities, too. The launch of AgButler’s Agbassador program includes ten college students at universities across the United States who will help spread the word about AgButler while also receiving a scholarship.
Founder Kevin Johansen also shared an exciting look into what’s next for AgButler, including a premium membership subscription that will launch in the new year, the Edwin Rewards Program to incentivize repeat use of the app, and their long-term vision to create the Butler’s Pantry – a Netflix-style suite of educational content designed for agricultural producers and laborers.
Is your workplace prepared for an emergency? Every day businesses face emergency situations that can result in devastating loss. Few workplaces have thorough emergency response plans in place and even fewer keep those plans updated.
MiddleCoast Solutions is building HeroHub, a sophisticated emergency response software that allows organizations to quickly and efficiently respond to natural or man-made disasters. Their AI-powered technology allows response plans to be tailored to employee’s natural strengths while gathering important data to improve future responses.
While HeroHub can be designed for virtually any business, the team is focusing on healthcare and educational settings for their initial rollout. Director of Development Nic Lamphear announced an exciting partnership with CoxHealth, which will allow HeroHub’s technology to be piloted in CoxHealth’s satellite medical clinics across southwest Missouri.
MiddleCoast Solutions also announced that they are in active conversations with investors to raise a Series A round of funding. This critical investment would accelerate the development of HeroHub’s software and have it ready for business owners as early as June 2022.
Vendux is the winning sales strategy for growth-minded startups and SMBs. Founder Henning Schwinum has built the nation’s largest network of vetted and experienced sales leaders – all of whom are available to contract on an interim or fractional basis. The depth of the roster means Vendux is prepared to help companies in virtually any space find the right interim sales leader.
Vendux’s client list continues to grow, including Springfield-based Penguin Tech. Clients like Penguin Tech are matched with a vetted sales leader with the industry connections and expertise needed to help scaling businesses reach the next level. Since the sales leaders are contracted on an interim basis, the startup company pays only for the sales leadership they need and avoids the expense of a full-time hire.
Vendux is leveraging new partnerships and startup multipliers across the world to continue to grow. By forming partnerships with incubators and accelerators such as the efactory, Vendux extends its reach and gets directly in front of companies looking to scale. Founder Henning Schwinum announced additional new partnerships at Demo Day, including agreements with TriSearch, LHH and efactory accelerator Cohort 2 company Apt Crowd.