Help in short supply for entrepreneurs in Indy

Keywords Opinion

The recent letter from Jack Klemeyer about Indiana ranking 47th in startups [What does ranking say about Hoosiers, July 16] hit home for me. I understand why entrepreneurs and startup businesses are reluctant and struggle here in Indiana. It’s been just about a year since I opened my business, Record Grabber, in Indianapolis.

During this last year, the growth of my business has been significant and hard won. I started out making cold calls from my kitchen table to get my first client and now lease office space and employ five people. My business may not be a huge benefit in the eyes of the city or state, but it makes a real difference to the six people here.

In part, my success has been from guidance and help I received from the Indiana Economic Development Corp. Amisha Patel helped me obtain a Skill Enhancement Grant, which allowed me to take some chances that I otherwise would not have had in attending conferences and trade shows. I made connections there that have been important, including clients, colleagues and resources.

I looked for groups, opportunities and support to help me learn and grow as a business owner and professional. Although people were understanding and open here in Indianapolis, it was a connection to the Flagship Enterprise Center in Anderson that has been the most beneficial for me.

I joined the 30U Mastermind Group there, which has proven to be invaluable meeting after meeting. The support and resources at Flagship have been incredibly instructive, and I appreciate the opportunity to participate.

Getting back to what Mr. Klemeyer commented on, it has been disappointing to me that small-business owners, especially startups, have so few resources here in Indianapolis. I am so thankful for Flagship that I make the drive to Anderson, taking extra time away from my business because it is important to me as the owner of a growing enterprise.

I can only imagine where my company would be if practical, financial and educational support and guidance were in greater supply to entrepreneurs here in Indy.

Trent Van Emon

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