Dana Holzer, lead designer at Montana Bones. (Photo by Alexandria Klapmeier)

Dana Holzer, lead designer at Montana Bones (Photo by Alexandria Klapmeier)

Scott Bouma grew up in Lincoln, and his wife, Rayna, grew up in New Zealand. The two met, got married, and knew they eventually wanted to move back to Montana. Three years ago, they opened their coffee roasting company, Caffeic, in Helena.

“I love Helena because it’s a great community,” Rayna said. “We’ve gotten to know so many great people. It’s small enough that you can really feel like you belong and you see people in different places and you’re like, ‘Hey, I know you!’ I really enjoy that community aspect of it. We have four kiddos, and it’s a great place to raise kids. We’ve lived in another town in Montana, but we decided Helena is an awesome place to raise a family.”

The Montana Accelerated Startups Program

The Bouma’s coffee roasting company, Caffeic, was one of the three businesses highlighted last Thursday during the Montana Accelerated Startups Demo Night at the Holter Museum of Art.

The Montana Accelerated Startups program was created by the Montana Business Assistance Connection and was sponsored by Edge Marketing + Design, Valley Bank, the Holter Museum of Art, and Social Flixx. The program, which began last spring, spanned six months and provided resources, accountability, and mentorship to the three selected startups. The three business would have monthly meetings, had access to a Slack messaging account for any questions, and set weekly goals they were accountable for.

[perfectpullquote align=”right” bordertop=”false” cite=”Dustin Stewart” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]”The startup participants received a very warm welcome to the Helena community and that is exactly what we had hoped for.”[/perfectpullquote]

“The demo night went very well; it exceeded our expectations in terms of attendance, participation, and excitement for the program,” said Dustin Stewart with Edge Marketing + Design. “The startup participants received a very warm welcome to the Helena community and that is exactly what we had hoped for.   The next round of Accelerated Startups will start in late winter/early spring.”

The three companies who were showcased were Caffeic Coffee Roasters, Montana Bones, and Spy High Mounting System.

Montana Bones

Montana Bones is a lifestyle company that offers jewelry, clothing and other Montana-made products. The company is four generations of family members working together in Helena, Bozeman, Lewistown, and Moccasin on the Mill Iron Livestock Ranch. It includes everyone from fathers, daughters, cousins, and great-grandchildren.

For Dana Holzer, the lead designer and “business wrangler” based in Helena, the program was a great experience.

“It’s been really good,” she said. “I’d say the best thing about the program is accountability. We had to say publicly in writing and also verbally what our goals were. So every single week we had to write a report on how we had or hadn’t achieved those goals. So when you do something publicly like that are held accountable you just achieve more.”

Spy High Mounting Systems

The third company featured last Thursday was Spy High, a trail camera mounting system. The idea for the company was born in 2014 when inventor/owner Steve DeMers was trying to adjust his trail cameras in the forest. Using his 32 years of professional wildlife experience, DeMers created Spy High and all of its equipment.

A mounting system from Spy High can include an extension pole, camera mounting platforms, tree attachments, a saw blade, a drill driver, and a variety of other attachments.

“Helena is such a great place,” said Brad Marten, the CEO of Spy High.”It’s centrally located in Montana, it has good shipping in and out and it’s a great place because it’s the capitol. It doesn’t have any downsides.”

The Next Startups Class

Stewart said applications for the next class will open Dec. 1 and be accepted through Jan. 15, 2019. He said the best way to stay up to date is to send a text message to 406-430-1996 or visit the Montana Business Assistance Connection website or Facebook page.

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