St. Louis, MO (PRWEB) May 21, 2014
Arch Grants, the non-profit organization dedicated to creating a more robust startup culture and infrastructure in St. Louis, today announced awards totaling $1 million to 20 early-stage startup companies committed to headquartering in St. Louis at an event at the Polsinelli law firm in downtown.
Since 2012, Arch Grants has given out more than $1.9 million in grant funding to 35 companies – 32 of which are still operating, while one (Obsorb) was acquired – leading to $6.5 million in revenue, $17.7 million in addition capital raised, and 192 net new jobs.
The 2014 recipient companies hail from six different states, the United Kingdom and Colombia and will each receive $50,000 in equity- free cash, with the only requirement being they must relocate or continue to operate from St. Louis. The 2014 Arch Grants recipients are: Artifox, BetaVersity, Blue Line Security Solutions, Cast, CoMo Medical, Dabble, Ephecom, FreightGrid, greetabl, Hyde, Jolt, Less Annoying CRM, LIFEPACK, Made for Freedom, MeterGenius, Nanopore Diagnostics, Prattle Analytics Tallyfy, Tuloko and Wondermento.
“We’re excited by the vision, execution and most importantly, the leaders of this year’s class of companies,” said Jerry Schlichter, co-founder and board president of Arch Grants. “These firms will help reinforce the message that St. Louis is a globally competitive city and an attractive destination for top business talent. We look forward to continuing to assist these entrepreneurs in growing their businesses.”
Over 90 volunteers evaluated hundreds of applicants through two preliminary rounds of evaluation. Ultimately, 46 companies were invited to compete in the final round of the competition. Two separate panels of St. Louis leaders grilled the finalists on their business models during Finalist Weekend in April. The Arch Grants Board then selected 20 grant recipients based on extensive feedback from the judges, and factors such as scalability, financial viability and the progress of the concepts’ prototype or minimal product.
Along with the $50,000 Arch Grant, companies also receive free legal and accounting services, additional networking and mentoring opportunities, and direct access to St. Louis-based angel investors.
“The success metrics of the recipient companies are encouraging,” said Ginger Imster, Executive Director of Arch Grants. “Of the companies still operating today, 97 percent remain headquartered in St. Louis. Arch Grants-funded companies are helping to drive the narrative of a resurgent St. Louis.”
Funders of the Arch Grants competition in 2014 include Missouri Technology Corporation, Partnership For Downtown St. Louis, Advantage Capital Partners; Bryan Cave; Emerson; Green Street St. Louis; Husch Blackwell; Interco; Monsanto; Peabody Energy; Polsinelli; Thompson Coburn; Kemper Charitable Foundation; the Regional Business Council; Sterling Bank; Twain Financial; the St. Louis Development Corporation, and the St. Louis Economic Development Partnership. Arch Grants board members also provided substantial underwriting for this year’s competition.
About The Winners
Arch Grants is a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to creating a more robust startup culture and infrastructure in St. Louis. Each year, Arch Grants selects companies to receive $50,000 in equity-free startup capital in addition to mentoring and networking opportunities from the results of its Startup Competition. Arch Grants partners with organizations dedicated to fostering economic development including ITEN, Gateway VMS, the St. Louis Economic Development Partnership, Accelerate St. Louis, the St. Louis Regional Chamber, the Regional Business Council, Washington University in St. Louis, St. Louis University, University of Missouri at St. Louis, and BioGenerator. For more information, visit Archgrants.org.