Madison’s Eric Ross, CFP® Coaches at Flywheel Social Enterprise Hub

According to data compiled by the Kauffman Foundation, the vast majority of entrepreneurs don’t have access to startup capital from sources like venture funds and angel investors. In fact, 95% of startups are funded by personal loans, credit cards and/or family and friends. Minorities and women are disproportionally hurt by the lack of access to capital.

There are numerous entrepreneurs and startups in the Cincinnati area. Many of these companies are founded to help provide solutions to complex social and environmental challenges by offering key products and services or through the populations they employ. These startups can turn to social enterprise groups like Flywheel Social Enterprise Hub for help.

Founded in 2011, Flywheel is the only social impact accelerator in the Greater Cincinnati region. The organization operates as a hub for social entrepreneurs and an accelerator for social enterprises. Flywheel’s workshops, training programs, coaching, and technical assistance help social entrepreneurs build ventures that deliver social impact.

Madison’s Eric Ross, CFP® and senior wealth advisor, volunteers as a business coach at Flywheel. The organization requires all of its coaches to go through rigorous certification. As a professional, Eric lends his expertise and experience to rising social entrepreneurs. Social entrepreneurs looking for help to build and grow their startup can utilize spring and summer programs at Flywheel like the following.

Workshops include a total of four hours. Sessions are Business Model Basics (101); Building a Business Model for the Social Entrepreneur (201); Impact Measurement for Entrepreneurs (302); and Brand Strategy & Storytelling (303).

Opt-in Social Enterprise Coaching provides two hours of coaching for any social venture on a monthly basis.

Elevator Accelerator Program is a multi-week program for social impact startups. Elevator is designed to help entrepreneurs develop a sustainable business model, and prepare them to seek capital investments. This year, the Elevator program runs virtually for 9 weeks, from March 1 – April 28, 2021. The program culminates in Demo Day on April 28th, where cohort members pitch to an audience of community stakeholders, social impact supporters, and potential investors.

Philanthropreneur® is an educational and giving program for impact investors (at all stages). A local network of partner organizations and individuals works to connect impact investors and impactful entrepreneurs. The group is designed to strategically invest in startups, particularly for underrepresented founders.

In closing, Flywheel “understands the power of partnerships, the value of culturally competent coaching, and the importance of creating access to capital.” To learn more about Flywheel, register for Demo Day, or check out its impact in the community visit www.flywheelcincinnati.org.