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Micro-Angel Startup Investing






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Cornbread Hemp’s Big Win with Equity Crowdfunding

Cornbread Hemp's Website In the last MetroStart podcast, we talked to Cornbread Hemp's Jim Higdon about their ongoing equity crowdfunding round. This week, we talk to Jim again about how they knocked it out of the park - nailing an oversubscribed $107,000 round in just 17 days! Listen to the podcast to learn how they were so successful, even in the middle of the Coronavirus shutdown. Podcast Transcript (This is machine transcribed, so please forgive the typos.) Alan (00:03): Welcome everyone...


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Louisville’s Cornbread Hemp Scores a Startup Fundraising First

Cornbread Hemp's Website Louisville's Cornbread Hemp just scored a local fundraising first. They're the first company to receive Render Capital's $20,000 investment in their WeFunder Match Fund. They're also the first local company to raise funds using Regulation CF equity crowdfunding through WeFunder, one of the nation's top equity crowdfunding portals. Equity crowdfunding is the way of the future for startup companies, and Cornbread Hemp is blazing the trail in the Louisville area. In...


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Louisville Entrepreneur Steven Plappert Back in the Startup Game

Steven Plappert and two co-founders, Andrew Busa and Chris Pierce, started an online fantasy sports company in 2013 called FantasyHub. The company saw early promise and growth, moved to Austin, TX to join the TechStars accelerator program, and even attracted $1.1 million in investments. However, due to issues in the industry as a whole, FantasyHub eventually shut down and sold parts of their operations to another fantasy sports company called DraftKings. In the world of startup companies,...


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Louisville Startup is an Implantable Healthcare Pioneer

People often cite healthcare as an area of expertise that may help propel Louisville, KY to greater startup and business prominence in the United States, and Dr. Angelique Johnson is helping us make that happen. She holds undergraduate degrees in mathematics and in computer engineering, a masters in electrical engineering, and a PhD in electrical engineering. Her doctoral work lead her to the development of technologies that she now applies in her own company called MEMStim. To quote...


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How This Louisville Company Makes Online Food Ordering Better

After years of working in the corporate world, Mo Sloan saw a need. Online ordering systems that were available to restaurants had a glaring problem. They do not integrate with the restaurant's current point-of-sale systems. This causes many restaurants to forego offering any sort of online ordering, even though the demand is very high. Mo set out to create a solution: EZ-Chow. The company found early traction and is growing fast. Entrepreneurs like Mo are a great example of how the "Third...


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How Has Y-Combinator Boosted Louisville’s WeatherCheck

What single Louisville company is part of the same fraternity as Airbnb and Dropbox? It's a company called WeatherCheck, and they now are an alumnus of the prestigious Silicon Valley accelerator Y-Combinator. They're the first and only Y-Combinator company to date from Kentucky! Demetrius Gray, Founder of WeatherCheck, and Co-Founder Jermaine Watkins recently returned from their 4-month stint with the accelerator, and it has proven to be an amazing accelerator for their company. In this...


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How to Make Raising Capital Easier

Since the very beginning, MetroStart (formerly Metro Startup Launcher) has worked to make it easier for startup companies in our area to raise capital and get started. With a lot of trial and error, we believe we have figured out a much easier way for startups to raise capital. The same method allows investors to invest smaller amounts and spread their risk, which statistically produces huge returns compared to typical stock market returns. As we have worked to build the audience for...


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Want to Know More About Patrick Henshaw, LEAP CEO?

Patrick Henshaw came to Louisville about 4 months ago to lead the Louisville Entrepreneurship Acceleration Partnership (LEAP) as CEO. If you're part of our entrepreneurial community, you've probably seen him speak at an event or two. You've probably heard some of his vision for the local startup world. However, he probably hasn't had time to talk too much about his background. It's become more and more clear with successful entrepreneurial communities around the country that startup...


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How to Help Save Lives and Build A Successful Startup

Rebah Wheeling was a successful insurance claims adjuster. One emotional day while meeting with a hurricane victim lead to the founding of her fast growing local company - Schedule It. In this podcast, Rebah talks about the emotional moment that lead her to start her company. Her description of the process of building her company is a MUST-LISTEN for any aspiring entrepreneur in our area and anyone else who would like to see our area prosper with technology startups in the "Third Wave" of...


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How to Get Capital for Your Startup

What's the most effective way to raise capital for your startup? How do most companies actually raise capital for their startup in our area? What changes in SEC law have made it easier to reach a lot more investors? What's the best way for YOUR startup to raise capital? In this video and podcast, Alan Grosheider, Director of Metro Startup Launcher, recaps his recent speech at Venture Connectors to discuss all of the above and more. Transcript Below (Machine transcribed, so please forgive the...


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Can Louisville be a Leader in the Sharing Economy?

The "Sharing Economy" has been an amazing driver of wealth and convenience for the world. Companies like Uber, Lyft, and, Airbnb have dramatically changed the way we get from one place to another, stay in one place or another, and get things done. They also have created HUGE company valuations and wealth for investors. Where does Louisville fit into this? Can we get a piece of the pie? Are we actually poised to be a leader in some areas of the sharing economy? Most people these days are...


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How to Find Success with Louisville Angel Investing?

Increasing the number of local angel investors has been the goal of Metro Startup Launcher from the very beginning. We've done a lot of blogs, emails, and podcasts, and now we've participated in two different types of crowdfunding campaigns. How's it going? Well, one of the companies just landed an investor/partner that has agreed to invest up to $10 million and is launching one final $300,000 local investor round. Learn more about this final $300,000 angel round! So what's working and...


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Cuddle Clones just made Louisville startup history!

Jennifer Williams of Cuddle Clones is making Louisville startup history! Cuddle Clones already made world history by creating the only scalable company that allows you to order online and create a lifelike replica of your pet ( Now, they just made Louisville history by becoming the first Louisville area company to sell equity in their company to the general public under the new Regulation CF crowdfunding laws. These laws allow a company like Cuddle Clones to sell...


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How to Boost Louisville’s Rise of the Rest Momentum

What a week we had recently for local entrepreneurs! I hope you had a chance to attend some of the Kentucky Startup events. With Endeavor's International Selection Panel and Steve Case's Rise of the Rest Tour making Louisville its only return city to date, we have a lot to be proud of. So how do we keep up the momentum? We're collectively doing a lot of great things, but let's see if we can crank it up a notch! At Metro Startup Launcher, we're working on a better way to increase the amount...


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How to get startups started with Alli from Wicked Sheets

Alli Truttmann just celebrated a HUGE milestone for any business: the 10-year anniversary of her company, Wicked Sheets. According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 20% of businesses fail in their 1st year, about 50% of small businesses fail by their 5th year, and only 30% survive over 10. And things are really starting to heat up now with her upcoming appearance in front of an audience of 96 million on QVC! Alli has been interviewed for a lot of Louisville area...


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Ben Reno-Weber, MobileServe, and Louisville’s Rise of the Rest!

MobileServe is a fast-growing mobile app company that helps organizations track and encourage participation in volunteer activities: tracking, managing, and reporting their social impact. They're a great example of how you can see a problem in your own workplace and then create your own solution that you and many others can use. They're also a great example of how a Louisville area company can help us participate in the Rise of the Rest of the entrepreneurial startups in the U.S. In this...


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How is John Williamson advancing healthcare artificial intelligence in Louisville?

Artificial intelligence is quickly affecting more and more of our lives, like it or not. I personally look forward to the day that lots of "bots" do all my busy work and leave me free to be much more creative. Could AI take over the world? Elon Musk thinks so. But, I tend to focus more on what it will do FOR us vs. what it will do AGAINST us. I'm a pretty optimistic guy. Well, artificial intelligence is advancing in Louisville, and local entrepreneur John Williamson is at the forefront. I...


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How are Ted Smith and Revon Systems trailblazing healthcare?

In the latest edition of the Metro Startup Launcher podcast, I interview Ted Smith, CEO of Revon Systems, Inc. Ted has been a major influencer of our startup community in many ways for quite a while. He's been a researcher, an entrepreneur, and even the Louisville Metro Director of Innovation. Now Ted is the CEO of Revon System, a leading developer of software applications for the treatment of chronic health conditions. Ted, Revon Systems, and their associated colleagues at Apellis...


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How to take advantage of the 40% Angel Tax Credit?

One thing that makes a startup investment in Kentucky extremely attractive is the Kentucky Angel Investment Tax Credit. If you're an accredited investor and a Kentucky resident, you can get an amazing tax credit (40 to 50%) on startup company investments. This is a TAX CREDIT, not a deduction. In other words, you get a dollar for dollar reduction of your tax for up to 50% of your investment in a qualified Kentucky startup company. These tax credits were designed to encourage qualified...


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How SkuVault launched from startup to skyrocket?

Local company SkuVault has won a lot of awards and made a lot of headlines lately. They're one of the local Endeavor companies, and they're a shining example of how to go from scrappy bootstrapped startup to amazing success story. On this episode of the Metro Startup Launcher podcast, we talk to Andy Eastes, co-founder and CEO of SkuVault. If you're interested in being an entrepreneur or investing in local startups, you don't want to miss this podcast. Here's what you'll learn about...