Startups and small businesses in Northwest Ohio now have access to expanded support resources through JumpStart, Inc. The Cleveland-based entrepreneurial support organization has opened a Toledo office and is working closely with a host of local partners to serve both tech founders and traditional small businesses owners across the region.
“JumpStart’s goal is to be a valuable resource for entrepreneurs and a trusted partner to the many organizations who are already working to help them succeed in Northwest Ohio,” said Lamont Mackley, JumpStart’s partner of core city services and outreach. “Whether we’re advising tech startups or coaching neighborhood small businesses, we can get things done working together that none of us can accomplish alone.”
JumpStart is expanding its presence in Northwest Ohio after years of collaboration with local organizations, including Toledo-based NextTech. Both groups are members of the Ohio Third Frontier’s Entrepreneurial Services Provider (ESP) program.
In addition to launching several new initiatives to help non-tech businesses in the coming months, JumpStart will now manage NextTech’s work with Northwest Ohio tech entrepreneurs as part of ESP’s mission to help tech startups grow, thrive and transform the Ohio economy.
The ESP program’s four other local partners—ProMedica Innovations, Mercy Health, The University of Toledo and Bowling Green State University—remain engaged under this new arrangement. The Ohio Third Frontier has also awarded funding to operate the program for another year.
“NextTech and JumpStart have been working closely in recent years to advance support for technology entrepreneurs,” said Frank Calzonetti, vice president for research at The University of Toledo and chair of NextTech’s governing board. “Now, the two organizations are taking this to the next level to provide the best assistance possible to Northwest Ohiotech entrepreneurs and leverage the assets of all collaborators.”
JumpStart’s expanded work for non-tech entrepreneurs is being supported by KeyBank Foundation (through the KeyBank Business Boost & Build program), ProMedica, Toledo Lucas County Port Authority and others.
“The work of the ESP program helping tech startups is important to our region, but traditional small businesses are also a critical piece of our regional economy,” said Kathleen Krueger, senior vice president of business development at ProMedica. “We are supporting the expansion of JumpStart’s work in this area because we must do everything we can to give these businesses the assistance they need to grow, create jobs and drive future economic growth.”
JumpStart’s work with non-tech businesses in the region has two important components:
- Starting a new program (heavily informed by JumpStart’s successful Core City program) to attract and serve entrepreneurs from communities not currently well connected to the business assistance resources, with a focus on low-and moderate-income communities, rural communities and communities of color.
- Forming a strong collaborative network of existing small business assistance organizations in the community to find and fill gaps in the service continuum and work together to connect their clients to the resources they need, wherever those resources are found.
“There are so many organizations doing great work to support entrepreneurs and small business owners in Northwest Ohio,” said Jim Hoffman, KeyBank market president for Michigan and Northwest Ohio. “The KeyBank Business Boost & Build program is about helping these organizations collaborate in new and interesting ways for the benefit of the communities they serve.”
Headquarters for all this activity will be at JumpStart’s new Toledo office in the Bell Building:
- Address: 709 Madison Ave., Suite 101
- Phone: 567-218-1717
- Business Hours: Monday-Friday, 8:30am-5:00pm
Both tech entrepreneurs and non-tech business owners can learn more and apply for assistance at nwo.jumpstartinc.org/entrepreneurs/apply-now/