This spring, 11 Florence and Lincoln County startups participated in the inaugural RAIN Coastal Pre-Accelerator program. And last month, they took the stage in impressive fashion at the RAIN Coastal Demo Day.
At the showcase and graduation event, held on June 21 at the Florence Events Center, each entrepreneur delivered a five-minute pitch on their business, talked about how RAIN has helped them and shared what they need to scale to the next level. The event also featured networking time, and a keynote address by coastal entrepreneur and Chef Mels’ cofounder, Sam Gross.
[View the entire RAIN Coastal Demo Day photo gallery here. Thanks to Robert Scherle!]
RAIN Coastal Venture Catalyst David Youngentob said, “RAIN helps startup ventures that are being founded here on the coast launch and grow their businesses faster so they can reach customers all over the country, and potentially the world. With our partners, we’ve been administering a three-month boot camp for startup founders. These people are your neighbors that you probably already know. These are folks that are trying to launch a company from scratch.”
The pre-accelerators, which began in March, were offered as 12-week, boot camp style programs for the best and brightest startup companies on the Central Oregon Coast. The company cohorts covered a range of topics including marketing and sales, financials and business modeling, and pitching and fundraising. They addressed these topics through seminars and workshops, group and 1-on-1 mentoring, one-page business plans, and more.
In October 2015, RAIN began hosting educational and networking events for entrepreneurs along the Central Oregon Coast, but this was its first multi-week, in-person program designed to help take an early stage startup from concept stage to launch stage, or from selling product to scaling the company. No other organization has ever offered such a program.
The Florence pre-accelerator cohort included:
Dragon Art: A publishing company that produces lesson plans for teaching arts, crafts, and illustration. kassykeppol.com
Jayne Smoley Design: A kiln-formed glass studio that both functional and sculptural glass art. jaynesmoleydesign.com
LocalGrange: A farm to table app that allows customers to purchase fruits, veggies, and eggs directly from local farmers. LoFoodal.com
Meant Manufacturing: Designers and creators of one-of-a-kind handbags and accessories, handcrafted in the Pacific Northwest using authentic materials, including Pendleton® Wool. www.meantmfg.com
Rose & Crown Apothecary: The medicinal formulary for AmpuCare products organically solving the unique skincare needs of amputees. roseandcrownapothecary.com
Stoney River Sinkers: Makers of lead-free and non-toxic fishing sinkers. Stoneyriversinkers.com
The Lincoln County cohort included:
Nelscott Reef Big Wave Challenge: A live webcast of this local surf competition that has featured world champions and some of the world’s biggest waves.
Oregon Truffle Tryst Farm: Produces aquaponics root pods made from sustainable and compostable design composed of organic and natural materials.
Providence House Manufacturing: Manufacturer and marketer of the patented (US & Canada) Smart Cat Box. And, a patent pending (US) on new non-absorbent cat litter pellets made from AG waste ‘wheat straw’.
Riley Invents: Makers of the Trezur Bag, a clip-on micro bag for truffle hunters, foragers, no-trace hikers, and agate hunters to stash their discoveries.
Sailstream: A metrics-driven eSports advertising platform that puts advertisements on your stream when you go live, removing the need for complicated negotiations, contracts, and networking.
The RAIN Coastal Demo Day was sponsored by Oregon Pacific Bank and Palo Alto Software. The Coastal program is supported by the Ford Family Foundation, the cities of Florence, Lincoln City, Newport, and Toledo; Lane and Lincoln counties, Economic Development Alliance of Lincoln County; Lane Community College/SBDC and Oregon Coast Community College/SBDC.