Making Kansas City "America's Most Entrepreneurial City"

This Big 5 initiative is designed to leverage Kansas City’s entrepreneurial resources to become “America’s Most Entrepreneurial City.”
Champion:  Gerald Smith, Plexpod


August 2016

KC makes big gains in Kauffman Foundation’s annual report on startup activity:

Here’s the full report from the Kauffman Foundation


July 2016

June 2016

April 2016

Making KC America’s Most Entrepreneurial City:  Year 3

June 29, 2015

KCSourceLink releases the We Crea+e Capital report. This report shows Kansas City’s weaknesses in the financing continuum necessary to grow area start-ups, and provides concrete strategies to fill our financing holes.

February 2015

November 2014

October 8, 2013 update

Champion: Peter deSilva, UMB Financial Corporation
This Big 5 initiative is designed to leverage Kansas City’s entrepreneurial resources to become “America’s Most Entrepreneurial City.” Our community has embraced this. Many have come together to accelerate the movement and we have come a long way in creating and sustaining the entrepreneurial “movement” in Kansas City.
Since the last Big 5 Report:

March 29, 2013 update

Champion: Peter deSilva, UMB Bank
This Big 5 initiative is designed to leverage Kansas City’s entrepreneurial resources to become “America’s Most Entrepreneurial City” and, according to Peter deSilva, continued to pick up steam over the past six months. In addition to numerous published stories about Kansas City’s emerging strength in entrepreneurship, several activities (see below) have taken place to continue to build out the entrepreneurial ecosystem. A key focus area is the need to establish a mechanism to sustain the drive to be America’s hotbed of entrepreneurial activity. In that regard, discussions have begun with numerous key community stakeholders to consider how best to sustain this Big 5 effort. This will continue to be a significant area of focus over the next quarter.
Since the last Big 5 report:

February 5, 2013 update


October 25, 2012 update

The 2012 celebration of Global Entrepreneurship Week in Kansas City officially begins Monday, Nov. 12 when local entrepreneurs and those who support their efforts gather for Startup@Kauffman Demo Day at the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.

Following a morning of presentations by area startups, the lunchtime keynote address will be delivered by Christopher Schroeder, an Internet entrepreneur and early stage investor from Washington, D.C. and New York City. Schroeder will share insights gained from his series of successful entrepreneurial startups and exits, most recently HealthCentral, one of the nation’s largest social and content platforms in health and wellness. He advises and invests a series of U.S. Internet startups and venture capital funds, and is an active supporter of emerging growth markets, with particular focus on the Middle East.
Kansas City area entrepreneurs, business and civic leaders, advisers, mentors, investors and others interested in supporting growth in the local entrepreneurial community are encouraged to attend Startup@Kauffman Demo Day. Approximately 25 founders of startups in Kansas City and throughout the Midwest will present at the event, sharing their businesses’ successes and needs.

September 12, 2012 update

Vision: Kansas City is recognized globally as the premier region for launching and growing innovative, high-growth companies.
Mission: To create America’s most comprehensive and effective entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Phase 1 complete – discovery, analysis, assessment, and celebration. Read More >>

June 26, 2012 update

The June 26 Tampa Bay Rays vs. Kansas City Royals game has more recently become known as Entrepreneur Day at the K! 1500+ tickets have been sold to local area businesses, and the first pitch will be thrown by The Chamber’s 2012 Small Business of the Year award winner, John McDonald of Boulevard Brewing Company. More than 40 regional mayors are scheduled to attend the game to show their support for the Big 5 initiative to make Kansas City America’s Most Entrepreneurial City.


April 23, 2012 update

Champion: Peter deSilva, UMB Bank
Launched Executive Committee.
Peter deSilva, Champion, UMB Bank
Michael Helmstetter – MRIGlobal
Benno Schmidt – Kauffman Foundation
Cameron Cushman – Kauffman Foundation o Cliff Illig – Cerner Corporation
Leo Morton – UMKC
Jim Heeter – The Chamber
Jo Anne Gabbert – JAG Portfolio Services
Launched Steering Committee.
Peter deSilva, Champion, UMB Bank
Jo Anne Gabbert – JAG Portfolio Services, Inc. 
Cameron Cushman – Kauffman Foundation
Maria Meyers – KC SourceLink/UMKC
Sherry Turner – Women’s Employment Network
Kelly Scanlon – Thinking Bigger Business Media
Adam Coomes – Starters
Thad Langford – Open Air
Pasquale Trozzolo – Trozzolo Communications
John McGurk – City of Kansas City
John Norton – UMKC
Conducted 13 “Community Conversations” throughout the region on entrepreneurship needs. Read More >>