SHAKER HEIGHTS, OH— Today, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) visited LaunchHouse, a greater Cleveland business accelerator, to tour its facilities and to hold a roundtable with local entrepreneurs. Attendees discussed LaunchHouse’s success, and its new efforts to attract entrepreneurs and create jobs in Northeast Ohio. During his visit, Brown and LaunchHouse jointly announced “Entrepreneurship Week,” an initiative that will bring entrepreneurs and investors to Cleveland later in the year.
“We must continue to make Northeast Ohio attractive to entrepreneurs to strengthen its place as a hub for business innovation and job creation,” Brown said. “Business accelerators are an important component to that effort, and in just a short period, LaunchHouse has helped local businesses create jobs and grow the region’s economy. With LaunchHouse I am proud to announce ‘Cleveland Entrepreneurship Week,’ an exciting opportunity that will draw some the of most successful jobs creators from across the country to Ohio.”
“Cleveland Entrepreneurship Week” will connect entrepreneurs with the resources and knowledge needed to succeed while promoting collaboration with local leaders, investors, peers, and support organizations. Notable speakers will include Alexis Giles, VP of Business Development at MOX and former Google New Business Development team member; Paul Singh, Venture Partner at 500 Startups; and Chris Heivly, founder of MapQuest and managing director of The Startup Factory who will serve as moderator.
“LaunchHouse is engaging the public about its approach to supporting entrepreneurship in Northeast Ohio and how these programs can be applied more broadly with support from Federal funding programs like Senator Sherrod Brown's Business Incubator Promotion Act,” said LaunchHouse CEO Todd Goldstein. “This roundtable discussion with Senator Brown is an opportunity for our organizations’ leadership to demonstrate how what we do at LaunchHouse, though different than a traditional Business Incubator, has great potential to impact economic development efforts in the way that Federal funding programs typically intend. The unique programs being discussed include private investments through the LaunchHouse Accelerator program, a new High School Accelerator program operated by LightHouse Ohio, and the public-private partnership model developed with the City of Shaker Heights to provide education and a network of business support services for local entrepreneurs. In addition, we are excited to officially be announcing the first ever Cleveland Entrepreneurship week taking place November 4th-8th and featuring a weeklong series of educational workshops, nationally acclaimed speakers and showcases for Ohio based businesses. We’ve commended Senator Brown for his efforts to strengthen the entrepreneurial support network and we have invited him to take part in Cleveland Entrepreneurship Week as a speaker during one of the week’s many great public events.”
LaunchHouse provides a collaborative ecosystem designed to foster entrepreneurship through coworking spaces, educational programming and a vast resource network to help transform early-stage startups from ideas to successful businesses. Among those joining Brown at the roundtable were LaunchHouse, CEO, Todd Goldstein; Director of Economic Development for Shaker Heights, Tania Menesse; OneCommunity, COO, Brett Lindsey; and several CEOs from local Cleveland area businesses.
Brown has long supported entrepreneurialism in Northeast Ohio, and is the author of the Business Incubator Promotion Act, legislation which would make more communities in Ohio eligible to receive funds that support business incubators like LaunchHouse through the Economic Development Agency (EDA). Business incubators promote innovation and entrepreneurship, helping regions to create high-skill, high-wage jobs by providing support to existing and start-up companies.