We’re pleased to announce that the LaunchKC initiative recently won an Excellence in Economic Development award from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC). The global grants competition for tech startups was awarded a Bronze Award in the Entrepreneurship, Population 200,000 – 500,000 category. Representatives will be recognized at IEDC’s annual conference in Atlanta, GA, September 30-October 3.
We are especially excited about the IEDC’s Excellence in Economic Development Award, as the awards recognize the world’s best economic development programs, partnerships, marketing materials and leaders. The 34 awards honor organizations and individuals for their efforts in positively impacting economies in communities both small and large. The Entrepreneur category recognizes programs, policies or initiatives that help emerging small businesses develop their ideas, products and/or services into substantial and sustainable businesses.
Now in its fourth year, LaunchKC attracts hundreds of entrepreneurs each year to apply and compete for $500,000 in grants and the opportunity to build their businesses in Kansas City. The top 20 finalists were revealed on September 4 and will pitch their business plans to a panel of judges on Friday morning, Oct. 12 at Techweek Kansas City, the city’s premier tech event. More than 6,000 people took part in last year’s weeklong celebration of technology and innovation. From the conference and expo to music and startup competitions to parties and receptions, Techweek offers a variety of opportunities to network, learn and explore with our local tech community.
Since 2015, LaunchKC has awarded $1.5 million in cash grants to 20 startup businesses who have made Kansas City home. It is a joint initiative of the Downtown Council of Kansas City and the Economic Development Corporation of Kansas City.
Congratulations to all who created, implemented and continue to promote and grow this award-winning program.