• St. Louis Celebrates Startup Growth & Global Entrepreneurship Week

    Nov 10, 2016
    Nationally, the post-recession recovery has been described as weak and sluggish. This has affected new businesses attempting to grow in a slow-growth environment and facing a constrained supply of credit.[1],[2] The U.S. as a whole, and even metros such as New York, Boston, Chicago, and Silicon Valley, have seen persistent year-over-year declines in their regional share of new firms. However, the St. Louis region’s commitment to supporting and developing their entrepreneurs has allowed them to buck the trend and register significant growth in this area. In 2009, St. Louis start-ups accounted for only 6.6% of regional firms whereas by 2014, this number had risen to 9.7%.[3] The number of new firms grew from 3,582 in 2012 to 4,266 in 2013 and to 4,876 in 2014, registering growth rates of 19.1% and 14.3% respectively.[4]


    This success was recently noted in a piece in the FiveThirtyEight blog that declared St. Louis, “The New Startup Frontier.” [5] Citing St. Louis’ makerspaces, accelerators, co-working spaces, and regional commitment to expanding the startup ecosystem, Popular Mechanics named St. Louis the Number 1 startup city in America in 2015.[6] Accelerators and venture funds such as SixThirty, Prosper Women Entrepreneurs, Yield Lab, Stadia Ventures, and Arch Grants; incubators such as T-Rex and Helix Center; and a burgeoning innovation district (the Cortex Innovation Community) are all working to support the startup community. This entrepreneurial culture has yielded investments in regional startups totaling over $1 billion in the last three years.[7] St. Louis has expanded access to startup capital and extended significant resources in order to create an attractive environment for entrepreneurs.

    In the 2011-14 period, new establishments have contributed approximately 30% on average to net job creation which is fairly significant when also considering that new establishments accounted for only 9.9% of the total establishments operating in the St. Louis MSA. During this period, more than 25,000 establishments were formed which added more than 184,000 jobs to the region, with approximately 28,000 net jobs attributable to new establishments. [8] The charts below highlight growth in the number of new establishments and the consistently positive job creation stemming from these ventures. A large contribution to firm growth has come from the Health Care and Social Assistance industry, where St. Louis’s strong health infrastructure, innovation hubs, and anchor institutions have encouraged growth. In the 2012-13 period, nearly 30% of new firms were in the Health Care and Social Assistance sector, with approximately 2,048 establishments formed. [9] 



    Accelerate St. Louis, an initiative formed through the partnership of the St. Louis Regional Chamber and the St. Louis Economic Development Partnership, was created to strengthen innovation in St. Louis. The mission of Accelerate St. Louis is to accelerate the growth of regional entrepreneurship, connect and support entrepreneurs, and raise awareness of St. Louis’ innovation ecosystem. In addition to the daily entrepreneurship and innovation events happening in the region, St. Louis will be celebrating Global Entrepreneurship Week with the rest of the world. During one week each November, people in 160 countries organize events and competitions to inspire entrepreneurship. While the official celebration spans one week, it’s no surprise that St. Louis’ entrepreneurial ecosystem has planned a full month of activities. From galas and hackathons to workshops and pitch events, there’s something for everyone. Accelerate St. Louis has assembled a list of the events planned. Pick one (or all 16) to attend and discover St. Louis’ entrepreneurial community and startup companies that are stimulating economic growth and reinvigorating St. Louis.

    [1] “Seven Years Later, Recovery Remains the Weakest of the Post-World War II Era” The Wall Street Journal, Jun. 29, 2016.
    [2] “Report to the Congress on the Availability of Credit to Small Businesses” The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, September 2012.
    Defined as firms of age 0, divided by total businesses in a given region.
    “Business Dynamics Statistics – Firm Age by MSA” U.S. Census Bureau, 2014.
    “St. Louis Is The New Startup Frontier” FiveThirtyEight, Sept. 12, 2016.
    [6] “The 14 Best Startup Cities in America” Popular Mechanics, Feb. 4, 2015.
    According to St. Louis Regional Chamber’s internal venture capital database.
    [8] “Business Dynamics Statistics – Establishment Characteristics by MSA” U.S. Census Bureau, 2014.
    "Establishment Births, Deaths, Expansions, Contractions, and Constants by State, County, and NAICS sector: 2012-2013" U.S. Census Bureau.
  • St. Louis Press Pass

    Nov 04, 2016
    St. Louis experiences job growth rivaling the 1990s
    (St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 10/20/16)
    The St. Louis job market took a long time to recover from the recession, but it seems to be making up for that now. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    Cortex could seek $20 million TIF
    (St. Louis Business Journal, 11/3/16)
    Cortex officials plan to use some $20 million in tax increment financing to help pay for its planned $170 million mixed development in Midtown. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    City Foundry developer gives peek at $134.2 million Midtown project
    (St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 11/3/16)
    A day after drawing closer to winning a key public incentive, the City Foundry developer gave an early view of what St. Louis taxpayers will get for their help. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    These jobs didn't exist in St. Louis five years ago
    (KSDK, 10/31/16)
    Liz Herman had experience delivering pizzas and generally enjoyed meeting people. So her new job as an Uber driver seemed like a perfect fit. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    The Bottom Line: Is St. Louis a global player?
    (St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 10/30/16)
    St. Louis is a middleweight in the global economy, a new study says. David Nicklaus and Jim Gallagher debate what that means and how the region might improve its standing. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    Square's made $1 billion in business loans, surprising even its own executives
    (St. Louis Business Journal, 11/3/16)
    Square, the payment company co-founded by St. Louis entrepreneur Jim McKelvey, has doled out $1 billion in loans to businesses through its Square Capital program, it revealed in its earnings report this week. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    Arch Grants hands out dollars, but its bottom line is talent
    (St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 11/3/16)
    Kyle Rood and Clint Matthews won $50,000 to develop a medical device, and now they’re making waffles. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    4 Tips for Launching a Successful Midwestern Startup
    (San Antonio Express-News, 11/3/16)
    Business leaders are advising young entrepreneurs to flock elsewhere. While cities like New York and Miami are gaining popularity with startups, the most advantageous locations may actually be more centrally located. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    Tech company Sherpa plans for growth in new St. Louis headquarters
    (St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 11/3/16)
    A local tech company that has developed a platform to match people with senior housing communities has completed a new office in Midtown Alley and plans to add 50 employees by the end of 2020. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    UMSL opens optometry care center
    (St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 11/1/16)
    The doors are open at the University of Missouri-St. Louis' $17 million, two-story Patient Care Center for the College of Optometry. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    St. Louis is hot spot for ‘agtech’ companies
    (Agrinews, 11/1/16)
    Since the entrepreneurial seed was planted in 2001 in St. Louis, some experts say the city has rapidly blossomed into its own “agtech” ecosystem. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    Monsanto opens high-tech greenhouses in midst of acquisition
    (St. Louis Public Radio, 10/28/16)
    Monsanto held a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday to open 36 new greenhouses at its Chesterfield Research Center. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    Cultivation Capital launches $40 million life sciences fund
    (St. Louis Business Journal, 11/2/16)
    St. Louis-based Cultivation Capital, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, is planning a $40 million investment fund for startups in the life sciences sector. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    New startup fund part of Washington University’s plan to be ‘Stanford of the Midwest’
    (St. Louis Business Journal, 11/3/16)
    Washington University hired Emre Toker as managing director of the Skandalaris Center — the school’s hub for entrepreneurial activity — in November 2014. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    KE2 increases 2016 funding to $15 million
    (St. Louis Business Journal, 11/2/16)
    KE2 Therm Solutions, a Washington, Missouri-based developer and manufacturer of smart refrigeration controllers, has reported raising $629,988 to the Securities and Exchange Commission. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    SIUE campus growth continues on the upswing
    (St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 11/2/16)
    Southern Illinois University Edwardsville continues to experience tremendous campus growth, according to a press release. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    WUSTL elevates African and African-American Studies program to full department
    (The St. Louis American, 11/3/16)
    It started with an act of protest. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    Pruitt-Igoe, a Symbol of Government Failure, Gets a Second Chance
    (Governing, 11/2016)
    St. Louis is finally ready to do something with the site of the old Pruitt-Igoe housing complex. What goes in there may say a lot about what cities have learned from the development mistakes of the past century. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    Here’s how county officials plan to use $8 million to help East St. Louis
    (Belleville News-Democrat, 11/1/16)
    Standing in the Malcolm Martin Memorial Park, along Front Street in East St. Louis with the Gateway Arch in the background, officials broke ground on an $8.1 million Front Street reconstruction project, that is aimed to help spur economic development along the riverfront. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    Slay talks up MetroLink expansion as he takes top transit official on a St. Louis tour
    (St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 11/1/16)
    The head of the Federal Transit Administration on Tuesday toured neighborhoods where a proposed Northside-Southside MetroLink expansion would run, a top priority of Mayor Francis Slay as his tenure winds to a close. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    Hyatt Place Hotel to be built next to Hofbräuhaus
    (Belleville News-Democrat, 11/2/16)
    Construction will begin in the spring on a six-story, $28 million Hyatt Place Hotel and Convention Center next to the Hofbräuhaus under construction in Belleville off Illinois 15, according to a spokesman for the developers. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    America's 'invisible' Muslims
    (BBC, 10/30/16)
    Two decades ago, Muslim refugees fleeing Bosnia arrived in St Louis and became a crucial part of the city. Now anti-immigrant fervour might lead the Bosnians of St Louis to become more politically active. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    After 2 years: Are commitments turning into action in Ferguson?
    (St. Louis Public Radio, 11/2/16)
    Many organizations are still working to make a difference in Ferguson and North St. Louis County two years after unrest erupted in the city. That includes several foundations and other nonprofits that made promises of funding and commitments to change as part of the healing process. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    2016 Convening Perspective: Q&A with Member Betsy Cohen, St. Louis Mosaic Project 
    (WE Global Network, 11/1/16)
    Last week, Welcoming Economies Global Network (WE Global) brought together some 300 leaders in immigrant economic development for our 2016 Convening in Philadelphia. >> CLICK FOR MORE
    Black Rep celebrates 40 years with mural and musical that say ‘I’m not going’
    (St. Louis Public Radio, 10/31/16)
    In the mid-1970s, Ron Himes started a St. Louis theater company to tell the stories of African-Americans. >> CLICK FOR MORE