A Wisconsin-based venture capital firm and startup accelerator is launching a new program that will leverage online marketing tools to support the growth of direct-to-consumer businesses across Indiana. gener8tor says the first cohort of the gBETA Digital Marketing for Small Businesses program includes 10 companies that will participate in a virtual showcase at the end of the month.
The 10 companies represent a variety of products and services from nine different cities across the Hoosier State.
The companies are listed below:
- Derivative – Drift produces sustainable household cleaners that help consumers reduce their carbon footprint and promote a healthy home environment. Drift has expanded to four outlets and partnered with several local businesses in central Indiana.
- Panthera candles – The company manufactures eco-friendly and sustainable alternatives to the home fragrance industry, including biodegradable bamboo candle, clean-burning waxes and fragrances, and wooden wicks. Panthera has sold approximately 1,900 units locally and online and is in the process of opening its first build-your-own candle store in Columbus, Indiana.
- Cute as a cupcake – The company specializes in artisanal cupcakes made in-store or on the go. Cute as a Cupcake has been in business for seven years as a minority/women-owned business with a nonprofit division, Cutie Cares, focused on food insecurities and community wellness.
- Unabiker Dirt Bike Armor – The company manufactures protective accessories for off-road motorcycles used in extreme environments. Unabiker has manufactured and sold over $3.5 million worth of products to customers on six continents.
- Urban kitchen – The fast-casual restaurant and social space serves the Southeast Fort Wayne community and celebrates diversity through an inviting atmosphere. Urban Ktch has received up to $150,000 in grants and complementary services through the PASE Pitch Competition.
- Aim for college – The company teaches international students the college admissions process in the United States, including finding the right school, navigating the admissions process, finding scholarships, and adjusting to a new culture.
- SPICE BLOW – The company specializes in healthy homemade meals with its gluten-free seasoning mixes, which are sold in 15 retail stores and on Amazon.
- Bri dance place – The dance industry focuses on age-appropriate choreography, costumes, and music for dancers of all ages, stages, and abilities.
- Burke metal work – The company designs and manufactures metal Christmas ornaments and interior decoration. To date, Burke has manufactured and shipped over 25,000 orders to customers in Canada and the United States.
- Southern Girls’ Pop – The company specializes in fresh gourmet popcorn in over 80 flavors.
“Making sure customers can find your small business online is critical,” said David Watkins, IEDC’s vice president for small businesses. “In today’s digital age, building a brand and online presence is essential to keeping your business competitive. We are thrilled to partner with gener8tor to create
this accelerator to support Hoosier small businesses as they explore the digital marketing tools available to them.
During the seven-week program, which began last month, businesses worked with the gener8tor team to meet mentors, gain traction with customers and apply digital marketing best practices to support growth.
“Bridging the gap between small businesses and high-growth startups is critical to the growth and health of Indiana’s economy,” said Elise Young, director of gBETA Indiana. “I’m thrilled to be part of the Hoosier community that supports passionate small business owners who build sustainably
legacies in our state.
The public showcase will take place on September 27, highlighting each of the 10 companies. You can RSVP to attend the event by clicking here.