Kansas City Startup Foundation
1712 Main St.
Suite 426
Kansas City MO 64108
Mission Statement
The Kansas City Startup Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit dedicated to cultivating a thriving and inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem in Kansas City through storytelling, experiences, and talent development. 
 
Our Mission
To cultivate a thriving and inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem in Kansas City.
 
Our Vision
For Kansas City to be the Most Entrepreneurial Community in America (MECA).
 
Our Core Values
  • Authenticity
  • Community
  • Impact
Our Beliefs
  1. We believe that being entrepreneurial is much more than starting businesses. It is a mindset that sees challenges as opportunities, an approach which is needed in every organization and industry.
  2. We believe that the entrepreneurial spirit is a powerful force for the kind of positive change that strengthens communities. It is hopeful, collaborative, passionate, and creative.
  3. We believe that strengthening the connections between the pillars of an entrepreneurial ecosystem is as impactful to entrepreneurial success as directly helping entrepreneurs build their businesses.
  4. We believe there are seven pillars of an entrepreneurial ecosystem who all play a critical role in the success of entrepreneurs:
         - Entrepreneurs
         - Investors
         - Corporations
         - Education
         - Government
         - Storytellers
         - Startup Support & Community Builders
  5. We believe all ecosystem pillars must be actively engaged in supporting innovation if Kansas City is to reach its full potential and become the MECA. 
Leadership
CEO/Executive Director Mr. Adam Arredondo
Board Chair Mrs. Sarah Shipley
Board Chair Company Affiliation Shipley Communications
History and Background
Year of Incorporation 2014
Volunteer Opportunities
Ways to donate, support, or volunteer
Thanks for supporting our mission and vision. Together we're building a bigger and better nationally-recognized startup ecosystem right here in Kansas City.
 
There are many ways to support our organization:
  • Online donations can be made via https://kcstartupfoundation.org/donate.
  • Phone donations can be made by texting "STARTUPKC" to 44321.
  • Checks made payable to "Kansas City Startup Foundation" can be sent to our office at 1712 Main St, Ste 426, Kansas City, MO 64108.
  • Select KCSF as your Amazon Smile charity and support our organization throughout the year with all of your online shopping.
Additionally, we're always looking for volunteers to assist us with our programs and events. Please contact us if you are interested in joining our team of supporters.
Financial Summary
Revenue Expense Area Graph

Comparing revenue to expenses shows how the organizations finances fluctuate over time.

Source: IRS Form 990

 Breakdown
Net Gain/Loss:    in 
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.
Statements
Mission Statement
The Kansas City Startup Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit dedicated to cultivating a thriving and inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem in Kansas City through storytelling, experiences, and talent development. 
 
Our Mission
To cultivate a thriving and inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem in Kansas City.
 
Our Vision
For Kansas City to be the Most Entrepreneurial Community in America (MECA).
 
Our Core Values
  • Authenticity
  • Community
  • Impact
Our Beliefs
  1. We believe that being entrepreneurial is much more than starting businesses. It is a mindset that sees challenges as opportunities, an approach which is needed in every organization and industry.
  2. We believe that the entrepreneurial spirit is a powerful force for the kind of positive change that strengthens communities. It is hopeful, collaborative, passionate, and creative.
  3. We believe that strengthening the connections between the pillars of an entrepreneurial ecosystem is as impactful to entrepreneurial success as directly helping entrepreneurs build their businesses.
  4. We believe there are seven pillars of an entrepreneurial ecosystem who all play a critical role in the success of entrepreneurs:
         - Entrepreneurs
         - Investors
         - Corporations
         - Education
         - Government
         - Storytellers
         - Startup Support & Community Builders
  5. We believe all ecosystem pillars must be actively engaged in supporting innovation if Kansas City is to reach its full potential and become the MECA. 
Background Statement
In late 2012, a string of serendipitous events occurred in a small area of midtown Kansas City. Within the span of two weeks, three properties about half a block from one another in the first neighborhood in the world to get Google Fiber simultaneously began hosting tech startups and entrepreneurs. Perhaps the most amazing part of the story is that it all happened without any planning. The result of these events led to the formation of what is now known as the Kansas City Startup Village (KCSV), an entrepreneur-led community helping grow and support entrepreneurs and the Kansas City startup ecosystem.
 
Based upon the principles and guidelines set forth by Brad Feld in his book “Startup Communities,” the KCSV is led by the entrepreneurs who inhabit it. These “co-leaders” volunteer much of their time for the greater good of the community with the goal of supporting each other on the road towards entrepreneurial success. However, sometimes volunteerism isn’t enough.
 
In 2014, the most active co-leaders realized that in order for the community to survive and thrive, it would need support from other stakeholders within Kansas City’s startup ecosystem. In order to receive the necessary support, many of the stakeholders required the Kansas City Startup Village to be a legitimate business entity. However, turning the village into a business would have introduced hierarchy and red tape into the mix and potentially jeopardized the organic, grassroots nature of the KCSV. Thus, in September 2014 Kansas City Startup Foundation was founded as a nonprofit to support the village.
 
During the formation of KCSF, those involved in its creation realized the new organization could do more than just support the village. It could also support the entire Kansas City startup and entrepreneur ecosystem in new and unique ways. It could unify and champion the ecosystem. It could provide value to all of the ecosystem’s stakeholders including schools, governments, corporations, investors, other nonprofits, and of course the entrepreneurs themselves.
 
On April 27, 2015, Kansas City Startup Foundation officially received its 501(c)3 designation from the IRS. The journey towards a stronger, more prosperous and vibrant Kansas City startup ecosystem is well underway, and KCSF is right in the middle of it all.
Impact Statement
All of our annual impact reports dating back to 2016 can be viewed on our website here:

https://www.kcstartupfoundation.org/what-we-do/impact-reports/
Needs Statement
KCSF’s most pressing needs at this time are:
  • Fundraising: We’re seeking additional funds via grant opportunities and individual / group support to enhance our current programs and launch new ones, all of which strengthen KC's startup ecosystem as a whole.

  • Mentors: We’re always looking for seasoned entrepreneurs and business leaders to be mentors at our MECA Challenges hosted throughout the school year. For more information, check out http://www.mecachallenge.com

  • Stories: If you have any stories about innovation, entrepreneurship, or novel community progress, please let our Startland News team know so they can report the story and share it with the entire StartupKC community. Sending an email to news@startlandnews.com is the easiest and fastest way to share news with us.
Service Categories
Secondary & High Schools
Higher Education
Alliances & Advocacy
Areas of Service
KS - Johnson County
KS - Wyandotte County
KS - Wyandotte County Urban Core
MO - Jackson County
MO - Jackson County Urban Core
MO - Platte County
Geographic Area Served Narrative
CEO/Executive Director/Board Chair Statement
Entrepreneurship is an essential building block for the economic prosperity of any progressive city. According to the Kauffman Foundation, entrepreneurs and their new businesses account for nearly all net new job creation and almost 20 percent of gross job creation.
 
Entrepreneurship has existed in Kansas City for several years with legends like Joyce Hall, Ewing Kauffman, and Henry Bloch building historic companies that continue to make an beneficial impact for Kansas City and beyond.
 
To support the continuance of 21st century entrepreneurship, startup and entrepreneur ecosystems (like Silicon Valley) are forming in cities great and small across the globe. These ecosystems consist of six core stakeholder groups all of which must contain participating members if the ecosystem is to be vibrant and prosperous. These stakeholder groups are entrepreneurs, schools, governments, corporations, investors, and nonprofits.
 
Starting in 2011, Kansas City’s own startup ecosystem began to realize a nationally recognized upward growth trajectory. It started with the KC Chamber’s “Big 5” initiative and the decision by Google to launch its much anticipated Google Fiber service in Kansas City. The world quickly took notice, and many analysts and researchers now consider Kansas City a premier American startup ecosystem.
 
Although Kansas City’s startup ecosystem is prosperous and has several active participants, it has grown to the point of needing a grassroots organization to unify and champion it. Kansas City Startup Foundation (KCSF) is on a mission to be that organization, but were not without our challenges.
 
As a relatively young nonprofit, we’re working diligently to be the force multiplier for the collective impact and show Kansas City that our efforts will help KC’s startup ecosystem advance further and faster. However, in order for KCSF to be successful in its mission, we must have mass adoption from each stakeholder group’s participants. Furthermore, we must acquire the resources and capital to realize our mission. Doing so will allow our organization to grow, implement necessary programming, and form strategic and collaborative partnerships.
 
To address these challenges, KCSF is meeting with many ecosystem participants to determine how best to serve their needs and garner their support.
Programs
Description
KCSFedu is an education-focused program aimed at redesigning the student experience and building a more robust entrepreneurial talent pipeline in Kansas City. KCSFedu efforts include:
  • MECA Challenge - A one-day innovation competition designed to build an entrepreneurial mindset in area high school students. The event promotes collaboration across sectors as an industry partner presents a real-world problem to students who, with the guidance of entrepreneur mentors, work in teams to design and pitch solutions.
  • Innovative Schools Visits - A curated tour for area educators to visit community innovation sites including metro schools where innovation is taking place. The goal is to promote collaboration across divides and to inspire and catalyze education redesign at a faster pace and deeper level.
  • MECA Methods Educator Training Workshops - 1-day or 3-day training workshops designed to be ‘disruptive’ professional development for area educators, equipping them with a design thinking experience and methodology to utilize in their classrooms. The goal is for teachers to become curators of real-world learning experiences.
Category Education, General/Other Education, General/Other
Population Served Adolescents Only (13-19 years)
Program is linked to organization's mssion Yes
Program Frequently Assessed Yes
Examples of Program Success
  • Over 2,500 - Number of students impacted by the innovative teaching methods learned by 35 teachers from program start in July of 2018.
  • 100% - Percentage of educators who would recommend MECA Methods professional development to a colleague.
  • 100% - Percentage of educators who said MECA Methods would highly impact their instruction in the future.
  • 94% - Percentage of educators who said the Innovative Schools Visit was highly valuable to them and their school.
"I loved being able to visit the schools, see teachers acting as facilitators of student learning and providing them with opportunities to have discourse with one another. I also think it is super beneficial as a teacher to meet other teachers and school leaders to have more school-based discussions." - Innovative Schools Tours Participant
Description
Startland News is a nonprofit, digital publication telling stories of Kansas City's most innovative people and ideas from all corners of the community. Startland News' goal is to elevate a spectrum of startups, creatives and risk-takers through storytelling that explores the highs, lows and promise of the entrepreneur experience.
Category Community Development, General/Other Community Development, General/Other
Population Served General/Unspecified
Program is linked to organization's mssion Yes
Program Frequently Assessed Yes
Examples of Program Success
  • 13,414 - The number of Startland News subscribers as of December 31, 2018 (up 20% from 2017).
  • 95% - Percentage of 268 Startland News survey respondents who would be "likely or highly likely" to recommend Startland News to a friend.
  • 192 - Number of startup jobs posted on the Startland News jobs board for actively engaged job seekers and startups seeking talent.
  • 9,125 - Number of Facebook fans as of December 31, 2018 (up 27% from 2017).
  • 549,428 - Number of Startland News pages viewed by readers in 2018.
"I love that Startland actively strives to cover the whole breadth of the KC entrepreneurial community, actively including entrepreneurs of color, stories about the negative impacts of gentrification, etc. Bravo." - A Startland News Reader
Description
Startup Crawl KC is a FREE one-night tour of Kansas City's startup community. This is your chance to check out some of KC's most exciting, promising startups at some of the hottest innovation spots in town. Discover and learn about the KC startups showcasing while enjoying craft cocktails, live music, delicious snacks and some pretty incredible people along the way. As you crawl, you'll meet the founders, ask them questions and get inspired. If you've ever wondered about or wanted to get plugged into the burgeoning startup scene in Kansas City, this is your night!
Category Education, General/Other Education, General/Other
Population Served Adults
Short-Term Success
Although the event brings together many startup and entrepreneur ecosystem regulars, it also attracts many new individuals as well.
  • For the regulars, participating and attending the event results in continuous learning and growth as entrepreneurs, investors, service providers, and more. They reconnect and strengthen bonds with like-minded individuals who are each doing their part to support and grow the community. They realize renewed inspiration and energy to continue doing what they do best. 
  • For the newcomers, the event introduces them to a welcoming startup community. They meet new colleagues and make new friends. They get inspired to start a new business or support existing businesses. They find resources to help them on their new journey.
  • For the ecosystem overall, the event results in a stronger more vibrant community which in turn results in economic prosperity, job creation, and entrepreneurial satisfaction.
Long-Term Success
Startup Crawl KC has two primary goals for the participants and attendees:
  1. Grow Kansas City’s startup and entrepreneur ecosystem. The event affords new participants an opportunity to learn about and engage with the ecosystem. This includes discovering local startups, learning how to start a new business, attracting new customers to their existing business, or even simply making new friends. A community that grows together prospers together.

  2. Market and promote local startups and entrepreneurs. For participating startups, the event is an opportunity for entrepreneurs to showcase their companies, launch new products and services, and attract new customers and investors. Brand exposure and company awareness is essential for startups, especially at the local level.
Startup Crawl KC brings all the right people together for collective success.
Program Success Monitored By Quantitative and qualitative metrics are used to measure the success of this program. We track attendees and participants, and plan to increase attendance each time we host the event. Perhaps more importantly are the collisions, co-learning, and community aspects of the event. Attendee and participant testimonials have revealed the program provides them with immense value from the people they meet, lessons they learn, stories they share, and sense of oneness they feel.
Examples of Program Success
This event has occurred three times since 2013 and with great results. The first event resulted in 5 locations, 300 attendees, and 40 startups. The second event resulted in 8 locations, 700 attendees, and 65 startups. The most recent event resulted in 11 locations, 400 attendees, and 100 startups.
 
Testimonials:
  • “Thank you! What a great way to promote businesses in a such casual and fun way. Looking forward to see what's next!” Maxime Guillaume (B/E Aerospace)

  • “I had a great time and this was definitely a great way to make networking fun and exciting!” Ciyanna Grant (Weight Watchers)
  • “I had a great time and received great feedback for my startup.” Katie Gore (entrepreneur)

  • “I am the founder and CEO of a startup just about to launch and was excited for the opportunity to share my company and story on the crawl.” Kirk Lakebrink (Kliq)
Executive Director/CEO
Executive Director Mr. Adam Arredondo
Term Start May 2017
Experience
Adam Arredondo’s two passions are entrepreneurship and Kansas City. He has spent the last five years leading startup companies including Local Ruckus as CEO & Co-founder. Adam is an active leader of the Kansas City startup community and co-leader of the Kansas City Startup Village.
 
Adam is the former Director of Entrepreneurship & Co-founder of CEED (Center of Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Development), an organization focused on strengthening Kansas City’s entrepreneurial community. As a result of these efforts, he has developed strong connections in both the civic and educational sectors and is excited to help Kansas City build a reputation of innovation.
Former CEOs
NameTerm
Mr. Matthew W. MarcusApr 2016 - May 2017
Senior Staff
Title Director of Development
Experience/Biography

Computer programming for the better part of 20 years, Matthew decided in 2010 that it was time to move onto new pastures. Venturing into the startup world was his first step. His previously co-founded startups include KULA Causes, Hoopla.io and Local Ruckus. His current tech venture is 1 Minute Candidate.

As part of his community building efforts, he is Director of Operations for Kansas City Startup Foundation (KCSF), as well as, an active co-leader of the Kansas City Startup Village (KCSV).

Matthew’s goals in life include becoming a startup advisor, entrepreneurial mentor, angel investor, and ultimately a professional philanthropist. His mission in life: help make the world a better place before his days are done.

Title Director of Experiences
Title Director of Education
Title Editor-in-Chief (Startland News)
Staff
Paid Full-Time Staff 7
Retention Rate 71%
Staff Diversity (Ethnicity)
Caucasian 6
Hispanic/Latino 1
Staff Diversity (Gender)
Female 3
Male 4
Formal Evaluations
CEO Formal Evaluation Yes
CEO/Executive Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Non-Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Non-Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Plans & Policies
Organization Has a Fundraising Plan Yes
Organization Has a Strategic Plan Yes
Management Succession Plan No
Organization Policy and Procedures No
Nondiscrimination Policy No
Whistleblower Policy No
Document Destruction Policy No
Collaborations
Kansas City Startup Foundation works with many stakeholders that represent and participate in Kansas City's startup ecosystem. This includes entrepreneurs, schools, corporations, governments, investors, and other nonprofits.
 
Sponsorships and collaboration opportunities often arise throughout the year which result in synergies and mutually beneficial results for all involved.
Government Licenses
Is your organization licensed by the government? No
Board Chair
Board Chair Mrs. Sarah Shipley
Company Affiliation Shipley Communications
Term May 2017 to Nov 2019
Email shipleycommunications@gmail.com
Board Co-Chair
Board Co-Chair Mrs. Kari Keefe
Company Affiliation KC Social Innovation Center
Term May 2017 to Nov 2019
Email kari@kcsocialinnovation.org
Board Members
NameAffiliation
Mr. Adam ArredondoKansas City Startup Foundation
Mrs. Becky ColeAffinity Enterprise Group
Mrs. Adrienne HaynesSEED Law
Mrs. Darcy HoweKC Rise Fund
Mrs. Kari KeefeKC Social Innovation Center
Mr. Brad MacLaughlinEntrepreneur
Mr. Matthew W. MarcusKansas City Startup Foundation
Mrs. Anita NewtonCommunityAmerica Credit Union
Mrs. Tina PetersonSprint Accelerator
Mr. Davyeon RossShotTracker
Mrs. Sarah ShipleyShipley Communications
Mr. Tyler VanWinkleRivet Creative
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 2
Asian American/Pacific Islander 1
Caucasian 8
Hispanic/Latino 1
Native American/American Indian 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 5
Female 7
Unspecified 0
Governance
Board Term Lengths 2
Board Term Limits 2
Board Meeting Attendance % 79%
Written Board Selection Criteria? No
Written Conflict of Interest Policy? Yes
Percentage Making Monetary Contributions 50%
Percentage Making In-Kind Contributions 25%
Constituency Includes Client Representation No
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 6
Standing Committees
Executive
Financials
Fiscal Year Start Jan 01, 2020
Fiscal Year End Dec 31, 2020
Projected Revenue $771,742
Projected Expenses $694,900
Spending Policy N/A
IRS Letter of Exemption
Foundation Comments
  • FY 2018, 2017, 2016: Financial data reported using the IRS Form 900.
  • Foundation/corporate revenue line item may include contributions from individuals.
Detailed Financials
 
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201820172016
Program Expense$426,840$203,576$11,892
Administration Expense$119,005$82,261$36,799
Fundraising Expense$0$0$0
Payments to Affiliates------
Total Revenue/Total Expenses0.932.050.77
Program Expense/Total Expenses78%71%24%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue------
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201820172016
Total Assets$320,549$352,455$44,059
Current Assets$28,134$57,558$44,059
Long-Term Liabilities$0$1$0
Current Liabilities$12,250$7,603$0
Total Net Assets$308,299$344,851$44,059
Short-Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201820172016
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities2.307.57--
Long-Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201820172016
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201820172016
Top Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Campaign Purpose At the beginning of every year, we host our Annual Partnership Campaign. The purpose of this campaign is to work with organizations in Kansas City who are looking to increase their exposure to the local entrepreneurial community. We offer opportunities for them to engage and support our work.
Goal $200,000.00
Dates Sept 2019 to Mar 2020
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years Yes
Other Documents
KCSF - Impact Report2018View
KCSF - Impact Report2017View
KCSF - Impact Report2016View
Organization Name Kansas City Startup Foundation
Address 1712 Main St.
Suite 426
Kansas City, MO 64108
Primary Phone (913) 9377494
CEO/Executive Director Mr. Adam Arredondo
Board Chair Mrs. Sarah Shipley
Board Chair Company Affiliation Shipley Communications
Year of Incorporation 2014