Kauffman Foundation Announces Grant to Startup Genome to Grow and Study World’s Largest Maps of Local Entrepreneur Communities

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Database of start-up communities launches new website to make mapping easier and plans to recruit 1,000 local curators.

What are the fastest growing start-ups in my city? Which of them are hiring? Who are the founders and investors in my industry that I should meet given the stage I’m at in my entrepreneurial journey?

These are the questions local entrepreneurs and city leaders often ask, and finding the correct answers can be time-consuming, if not impossible. The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation today announced a grant to an organization that has a tool to help them find the answers. Startup Genome is a worldwide network of volunteer curators who create up-to-date and accurate maps of the entrepreneurial communities in which they live and work. Kauffman’s grant will support and accelerate Startup Genome’s ability to build its database and collect and evaluate data.

“Mapping local start-up ecosystems not only provides an important tool to communities, but it will create a treasure trove of rare data on local start-ups,” said Dane Stangler, director of Research and Policy at the Kauffman Foundation. “Our plans include studying how start-up communities develop and identify action steps that cities can take to grow their entrepreneurial community and measure their progress.”

“Startup Genome enables entrepreneurs and investors to plug into their city's start-up scene, which has untold benefits to them and their local economies,” said Thom Ruhe, vice president of Entrepreneurship at the Kauffman Foundation. “So everyone wins when communities gain a better understanding of their city's entrepreneurial climate.”

Startup Genome’s goal is to recruit 1,000 local curators who will populate start-up community data in their city’s maps. Currently, 332 curators are curating maps in 271 cities and 57 countries. So far they've collected data on more than 26,000 founders, 84,000 startups, 5,800 investors and more than 18,000 deals. Curators can be entrepreneurs, investors, accelerator program managers, Startup Weekend organizers, community builders, students, journalists and more.

“Working with the Kauffman Foundation will help us toward our long-term vision to build the deepest, most accurate database of start-up companies and entrepreneurs in the world,” said Shane Reiser, founder of Startup Genome. “Kauffman’s research team will enable us to leverage that data to help organizations and cities measure their impact and identify ways to grow, and to share the data openly so that anyone can use it to build useful tools for entrepreneurs.”

Startup Genome launched a new website last week at http://www.startupgenome.com with improved searches, speed, curator tools; updated statistics and industry pages; and responsive design for mobile phones. The site will continue to develop data automation tools, integrations and partnerships with other online sources such as CrunchBase, Angel List and LinkedIn.

About the Kauffman Foundation

The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation is a private, nonpartisan foundation that aims to foster economic independence by advancing educational achievement and entrepreneurial success. Founded by late entrepreneur and philanthropist Ewing Marion Kauffman, the Foundation is based in Kansas City, Mo., and has approximately $2 billion in assets. For more information, visit http://www.kauffman.org, and follow the Foundation on http://www.twitter.com/kauffmanfdn and http://www.facebook.com/kauffmanfdn.

About Startup Genome

Startup Genome is a worldwide network of volunteer curators creating the most up-to-date and accurate maps of the start-up communities in which they live and work. Startup Genome’s website is a dynamic access point that lets anyone – from aspiring entrepreneurs to universities to economic development agencies – better understand their local start-up community. All maps are embeddable and the Startup Genome dataset is accessible via an open API so that anyone can use them inside of their own projects. Visit startupgenome.com for more information and follow the conversation @StartupGenome.

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