Our Ultimate Guide to MN Accelerators (in partnership with Launch Minnesota) is full of useful information, but we wanted to spotlight a few programs in particular to show off a bit of the bright entrepreneurial spirit in the state. Here’s gBETA Greater MN St. Cloud.

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St. Cloud Connections

A great idea is useless without connection. 

Precious Drew

Precious Drew

That’s exactly what gBETA Greater MN St. Cloud, the Greater St. Cloud Development Corporation, and regional players such as Great North Labs are trying to solve.

“[People] don’t have the connections necessary to really make their business prosper,” Precious Drew, Director of gBETA Greater MN St. Cloud, said. “They don’t really know where to start in order to get it off the ground and running to reach that next step.”

Larry Hosch, Business Development Director of Greater St. Cloud Development Corporation, acknowledged the organization’s role as a connector, but said the real props go to the doersdoers like Drew and the gBETA program.

“We want to make sure our entrepreneurs see those connections,” Drew said. “We’re all right here and ready to help them out.”

Even with the region’s strong university system, Drew said graduates have been unable to see the opportunities and resources right in their own backyard. With continued work, however, she sees St. Cloud emerging as a major entrepreneurship hub — one that not only retains top talent from the universities and underrepresented communities in the region but attracts it from other regions as well.

“We want to make sure our entrepreneurs see [business connections in St. Cloud],” Drew said. “We’re all right here and ready to help them out.” — Precious Drew

That said, Drew was adamant the focus of gBETA Greater MN St. Cloud, the Greater St. Cloud Development Corporation, and other regional players is growth — not competition.

“It’s absolutely not a competition,” she said. “We ultimately want to see entrepreneurship in Minnesota grow.”

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Eager to learn more about Minnesota accelerators? Check out our other accelerator spotlights!

Vodka & Vaccines — University Enterprise Labs
Igniting Entrepreneurial Potential — Red Wing Ignite