Friday Five

Friday Five: May 24, 2019

Check out these five stories from across Montana that highlight entrepreneurs and other great events going on in Montana!

Little girl kayaking on Whitefish Lake

1. Figure Technologies in Helena Luring Engineers to Montana

A Helena startup company is attracting attention in the high tech world as it continues to draw eyes to Montana.

Figure Technologies was founded by Mike Cagney, a former co-founder and CEO of SoFi. Figure is focused on home equity. According to the Helena Independent Record, the company sells products that allow customers quick, low-cost access to the equity in their homes. The company’s success is due to its use of blockchain technology, which is a growing list of information that is linked using cryptography.

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Friday Five: May 3, 2019

Check out these five stories from across Montana and beyond that highlight entrepreneurship, the high tech sector, and everything else that makes Montana a great place!

Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area, Southeast Montana

1. Missoula Startup GatherBoard Launches New App, Set to Enter New Markets

GatherBoard’s new app will allow the Missoula company to venture into new markets and make the user experience more friendly.

The new app creates a targeted audience for users hosting events on the platform. It allows users to curate their own personal feed and sets preferences for different locations that use the service. Users can also integrate with other apps on their mobile device.

“Now, because there are these curated views that people can choose for their home board, and just see what they want to see but still access everything, it will make a huge city’s calendar much more personal for the end user,” said Molly Bradford, a co-founder a CEO of GatherBoard in a Missoula Current article. “It’s helping us expand our market share, and make it a more personal experience.”

To learn more about GatherBoard, click here.

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Friday Five: April 12, 2019

Check out these five stories from across Montana and beyond that highlight entrepreneurship, the high tech sector, and everything else that makes Montana a great place!

Fly Fishing in Avalanche Lake

1.  How to Build an Investor Pipeline and Raise a Seed Round— a Step-by-Step Guide

In 2016, Montana startups were able to attract $45.7 million in capital in 2016. But do you know how to attract the right investors to raise money to make your dream come true? Fletcher Richman is here to help you out.

Over the past four years, Richman has been involved in 90-plus Seed rounds. Recently, he helped raise a $2.6 million Seed round for Halp which was led by Matchstick Ventures with partnership from Next Frontier Capital, a Bozeman-based company.

Check out his list of seven tips on how to start your investor pipeline and raise a Seed round to take your dreams out of the garage today. Click here to read more.

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Friday Five: April 5, 2019

Check out these five stories from across Montana that highlight entrepreneurship, the high tech sector, and everything else that makes Montana a great place!

1. iResponse Receives American Indian Business of the Year Award

On Monday, a Rocky Boy business that helps tribes preserve and protect tribal lands received a national award.

iResponse was awarded the American Business of the Year Award from the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development, an American Indian business and economic development organization.  The award was presented Monday during the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development’s Reservation Economic Success. According to CEO Alvin Windy Boy, Sr., iResponse is an online resource tribal communities can use to identify historic and sacred lands to prevent them being damaged or destroyed by construction.

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Friday Five: March 29, 2019

Check out these five stories from across Montana that highlight entrepreneurship, the high tech sector, and everything else that makes Montana a great place!

Saint Mary Lake

Saint Mary Lake, Glacier NP

1. Outdoor Tourism and Marketing Technology Company, TOMIS, Looks to Expand Services, Hirings in Missoula

After spending several years in Silicon Valley learning about the high tech world, Evan Tipton returned to Missoula to found TOMIS (Tour Operator Marketing Intelligence Software). From the beginning, TOMIS has taken off and the company was named a High Growth Company to watch by the Montana High Tech Business Alliance. Now, it’s looking to continue its upward momentum in 2019.

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Friday Five: March 22, 2019

Check out these five stories from across Montana that highlight entrepreneurship, the high tech sector, and everything else that makes Montana a great place!

Snow Buntings in Rocky Mountains

Snow Buntings outside Three Forks, MT

 

1. 5 Things to Try at Great Falls’ New Vietnamese Restaurant Pho Vi Tai

Recently, a couple in Great Falls opened a Vietnamese restaurant called Pho Vi Tai, named after their son.  The result is located at 3212 10th Ave. South, east of Super 1 Foods. Carol Tran and Don Pham, the owners, have been in Great Falls for four months. In an article from the Great Falls Tribune, the couple said they saw possibility in Great Falls.

So what were five dishes the restaurant recommends? Click here to find out!

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Friday Five: March 15, 2019

Check out these five stories from across Montana that highlight entrepreneurship, the high tech sector, and everything else that makes Montana a great place!

Red Lodge Mountain Resort, Red Lodge

1. Sportsman’s Lodge Welcomes New Owners

When Bob Kudelski retired from professional hockey in 1996, Bob and his wife, France, made a lifestyle change and bought a guest ranch in Wyoming. Later, the Kudelski’s also owned a guest lodge in Colorado. But they always wanted to make Montana home at some point.

“We’ve been coming here for 25 years and rented a house here when our daughter was little,” said France in a story from The Madisonian. “Then this summer we were camping, and Bob saw that it was on the market. We went under contract pretty quickly.”

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Friday Five: March 8, 2019

Check out these five stories from across Montana that highlight entrepreneurship, the high tech sector, and everything else that makes Montana a great place!

Montana Dinner Yurt, Big Sky

1. Montana’s First Indoor Ax-throwing Business Set to Open

If you’re looking for a unique activity to do in Missoula, consider checking out the Lumberjaxe Throwing Co., an ax-throwing business set to open in March. The company is owned by Gentry and Megan Branz and their business partner, Steve Chasner. The business is located on Toole Avenue beneath the Toole Crossing apartments.

The business will have nine 14- and 15-food throwing lanes open to people and groups by the hour. Each lane is surrounded by chain link fencing for safety. Last spring, the couple built an ax-throwing trailer, which was a popular attraction.

To learn more about the Lumberjaxe Throwing Co., click here to read the full story.

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Friday Five: March 1, 2019

Check out these five stories from across Montana that highlight entrepreneurship, the high tech sector, and everything else that makes Montana a great place!

Belton Chalet, West Glacier

1. Carroll College Hosts ‘Shark Tank’ Competition

This year, Caroll College’s business program partnered with Silicon Valley’s longest-serving CEO, Ray Zinn, to host a  ZinnStarter program in Helena. The program will award up to $1,000 to three or four teams of student entrepreneurs for product prototype and business plan development.

Students will present their projects in the popular “shark tank” style presentation in front of a nine-person, all-student, board of directors.

Click here to watch a news video from KTVH.

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Friday Five: February 22, 2019

Check out these five stories from across Montana that highlight entrepreneurship, the high tech sector, and everything else that makes Montana a great place!
Red Ants Pants Festival, White Sulphur Springs

1. Small business brings opportunity to communities, entrepreneur says

Recently one of Montana’s best known entrepreneurs, Sarah Calhoun of Red Ants Pants in White Sulphur Springs, was the keynote speaker at the Salt Lake Chamber of  Commerce’s Small Business Summit.

Red Ants Pants is a company headquartered 76 miles east of the state capitol. The company manufacturers pants and other clothing items for women who work in outdoor occupations that require more durable clothing. Calhoun said she wanted to create a pant that would fit, function, and flatter working women.

“The potential of small business is really what we should be thinking about (including) in rural areas, not just in urban areas,” Calhoun said in a Desert News article. “They are the backbones of our communities.”

You can read more Calhoun’s insights here.

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