The Colorado Springs startup group is closing down company

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Peak Startup, which offered entrepreneurs a variety of events to help their startups grow, closed the remaining fortune and transferred it to a group that helps start-up companies with social impact.

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The nonprofit’s board members decided to cease operations last month after a 13-month planning and evaluation process that began with the departure of the former executive director, said Jacob Eichengreen, chief executive officer of Peak Startup. Almost all of Peak Startup’s program was offered through in-person events that the group was unable to host during the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to a press release from Peak Startup, the planning and evaluation process involved around 50 interviews and “stakeholder” discussions, led by Cari Hanrahan, who Peak Startup hired a year ago as a part-time executive consultant, “to develop the group’s vision and programs refine “then. This process led to a discussion on “Could (Peak Startup’s) resources have a greater impact if invested in another organization?”

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The board found that other organizations were better positioned to help entrepreneurs and that their “six figure” resources could be better used by another organization. The Colorado Institute for Social Impact was founded in 2016 by Jonathan Liebert, CEO of the Better Business Bureau in Southern Colorado, to help entrepreneurs who are starting or planning to start businesses with a social or charitable impact.

Colorado Springs Business Wake finds its merit in failure

“It was a tough decision to make, but we also see it as a positive indicator of local entrepreneurial power in Colorado Springs,” Eichengreen said in a press release on Monday. “With multiple accelerators, increased interest, and even a unicorn startup worth over $ 1 billion in our city (Quantum Metric), this move recognizes that our ecosystem is fundamentally stronger than it was when the Peak startup started. This step positions it our resources to achieve more impact than we could do alone. “

Peak Startup was known for its Startup Week, a five-day menu of workshops and seminars on business topics. Startup Weekend, where entrepreneurs gathered for two days to create a business plan to turn a business idea into a company; and monthly pitch nights where entrepreneurs could present their business ideas to a jury in order to refine their pitches to potential investors. The group also hosted a “wake” for failed business ideas.

Peak Startup conducts a survey of local startup companies

The Colorado Institute for Social Impact plans to host a pitch event for social impact businesses this year and provide information on how to run the events previously sponsored by Peak Startup, Eichengreen said. Peak Startup will also have information on its website that directs entrepreneurs creating businesses that don’t focus on social impact to Exponential Impact, an accelerator for technology startups. Catalyst Campus for Technology and Innovation, an accelerator for aerospace and defense companies; and among others the Pikes Peak Small Business Development Center.

Peak Startup was founded in 2014 through the merger of Peak Venture Group and Startup Colorado Springs. Peak Venture Group started in 2000 and sponsored Pitch Night, an annual program of technology awards and other events. The Colorado Springs startup was founded in 2011 and hosted a monthly breakfast program and startup weekend. The first event of the combined group was the first local startup week.

Entrepreneurs will showcase ideas at Pitch Night in Colorado Springs

“This is not related to a pandemic – the pandemic gave us the time to complete that process,” Eichengreen said of the recent change. “The board and I thank the business community for an organization that has been operating in one form or another for more than a decade, and we are grateful for those who have been involved.”

Two startup groups from Colorado Springs are merged




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