Written by Allison Way, writer and videographer for Think Big Partners.
There are a lot of entrepreneurial resources out there, even in Kansas City alone. In order to help you narrow down the most important resources, Think Big Partners has developed a list of 10 Kansas City Entrepreneurial Resources that are Worth Checking Out. Some of these resources are located near Kansas City, while others are located in the heart of downtown. No matter where these entrepreneurial resources are located, however, one thing is for sure: they were all created to help entrepreneurs launch successful businesses. So if you’re a serious entrepreneur looking for small business help, check out one (or all) of these resources to determine which one is right for you and your percolating ideas.
1. The Kauffman Foundation
http://www.kauffman.org/ | 816.932.1000
The Kauffman Foundation provides Kansas City with entrepreneurship education and training efforts and also promotes entrepreneurship-friendly policies to better facilitate the commercialization of new technologies. With programs such as FastTrac and the Entrepreneur Fellows Program, The Kauffman Foundation uses practical hands-on lessons in business development to help entrepreneurs become a success.
http://www.bizperc.com/ | 816.842.5244
bizperc is Kansas City’s newest entrepreneurial resource located in the thriving Crossroads District of downtown Kansas City. As a collaborative, rentable workspace, bizperc provides serious entrepreneurs with all of their startup needs; from a vast rolodex of networking resources to an inspirational and creative environment, from beneficial core services to entrepreneur education and events, bizperc has exactly what the modern, yet Midwestern, entrepreneur needs.
3. Missouri Enterprise
www.missourienterprise.org | 800.956.2682
The Missouri Enterprise helps small- and medium-sized businesses in the United States with manufacturing productivity improvement, ISO/quality management systems, and growth and business strategies. The Missouri Enterprise offers a variety of seminars, events, and core services.
4. Hispanic Economic Development Corporation of KC
http://www.kchedc.org/ | 816.221.3442
The Hispanic Economic Development Corporation of Kansas City helps aspiring and current entrepreneurs to start, sustain and grow their own businesses. This service comes complete with bilingual information, education, services, and assistance to develop business plans and feasibility plans to increase the probability for success and minimize the risk of failure in business.
5. Ozark Foothills Business Incubator
www.ofrpc.org | 573.785.6402
The Ozark Foothills Business Incubator may be further away from Kansas City than most (located in Poplar Bluff, Missouri), but that doesn’t mean that it cannot provide entrepreneurs with an innovative facility to enhance business startup and expansion. With six industrial spaces, a wide variety of business services (such as seminars, tenant placement assistance, financial planning, and conference rooms), as well as discounts on many of its services, this business incubator has been professionally administered by the Ozark Foothills Regional Planning Commission.
http://www.famee.org/ | 785.554.3050
Located in Topeka, Kansas, the Foundation for the Advancement of Marketing Excellence in Entrepreneurs provides entrepreneurs with free resources, training programs, and guidance to help small businesses address key marketing and development challenges and to, of course, help grow their firms.
7. First Step Fund
www.firststepfund.org | 816.235.6116
First Step Fund of Kansas City offers general business courses, childcare business courses, as well as on-going support after the entrepreneurial company has been launched. First Step Fund is a 36-hour program with a full feasibility plan for business or business concepts. It is taught by an experienced team of facilitators, coaches, and small business professionals.
8. Kansas and Missouri Universities and Colleges
Many entrepreneurial resources can be found in the universities and colleges of Kansas as Missouri. Check out the following schools to improve your entrepreneurial knowledge:
Kansas City Kansas Community College, Entrepreneurship Program
Johnson County Community College, Entrepreneurship Program
Missouri Western State College, Dept. of Business
Small Business Development Center at JCCC
Small Business Development Center at KU
Small Business Development Center at Northwest Missouri State (Extension)
Small Business & Technology Development Center at UMKC
Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies and Development
9. Women’s Business Center
http://www.kansaswbc.com/ | 913.492.5922
The Kansas City Women’s Business Center, located in Lenexa, Kansas, offers mentoring, resources, and counseling to women who wish to become an entrepreneur or who are currently operating their own business. The center provides business counseling, seminars, classes, workshops, networking, and peer mentoring.
10. Ennovation Center
www.ennovationcenter.com | 816.463.3532
Located in Independence, Missouri, Ennovation Center focuses on three core areas for the development of new business: bio-tech, kitchen, and finally, business & technology. Ennovation Center provides professional facilities, administrative services, business & financing assistance, as well as a vast list of resources such as receptionist & message services, janitorial services, conferences & training rooms, and copy and fax machines.
More entrepreneurial resources can be found by browsing KCSourceLink.
We would like to thank all of the above Kansas City resources for Thinking Big and providing help for all of our entrepreneurs.