In the world of start-ups where even the most savvy entrepreneurs have to always be watching their backs, competition is a constant and getting funded is just the first of many challenges to come. However, thanks to the founders of SproutBox, a young investment company from Bloomington Indiana, there may be light at the end of the tunnel. Questionable ethics and manipulative practices have tarnished the reputation of venture capitalism, giving rise to the unsavory nickname of “vulture capitalism,” but the elite crew of product developers, creatives, and business experts over at SproutBox have a fresh point of view. They believe what’s currently happening within the industry is “failing entrepreneurs,” and in response to this unfortunate reality have made a vow to change the current venture capitalism model by investing themselves- not just dollars- into their clients’ projects.
Instead of the “ATM approach” that many entrepreneurs are accustomed to with venture capitalists, the people at SproutBox work in conjunction with entrepreneurs in exchange for equity. With this support they hope to eliminate many of the obstacles that cause young business to fail or experience major set backs, leaving only the opportunity for innovation and success.
Each year, their team of experts handpicks four start-ups and gives them the tools and resources necessary to begin generating revenue. Their strongest characteristic is “a dedication to ensuring entrepreneurial success.” SproutBox describes themselves as being “not about talk.” “We are a team of coders, marketers and business experts that work with entrepreneurs full-time.” say the company.
With the help of their team, advisers, and partners SproutBox has been able to help over 10 entrepreneurs bring their dreams to reality. Two of their funded start-ups include Proposables, a web-based software for generating and tracking proposals: and ScheduleThing, an online booking and reservation software for small businesses with free and priced plans.
SproutBox’s totally fresh approach to venture capitalism goes beyond the status quo and allows them to share more with their clients helping to keep costs low and debt to a minimum. This new strategic funding model is garnering attention, and it’s helping to place entrepreneurs in the optimal environment for growth and success.
So, next time you’re feeling the competition nipping at your heals think “inside the sproutbox,” and you just might find the edge-up that you’re looking for.
Photo by: kmakice