Investing in Entrepreneurship
Starting a business is one of the most challenging things most people never experience. Since Bright Agrotech was founded in 2010, we've learned a lot about building a business, both through our successes and our failures.
The fact is that taking the plunge into entrepreneurship is much less terrifying if you have some help. Luckily, we've had some incredible support from our local business incubator which has provided us with both space to work and meet, and mentoring through the typical start-up struggles.
Last week, Dr. Nate went to speak to a group of entrepreneurs in Sheridan, Wyoming at an event hosted by the Wyoming Technology and Business Center.
He spoke about the birth of ZipGrow technology and the unique way that it fits into small farming businesses, giving them an advantage that supports their success.
"[ZipGrow technology] allows people to sell their produce in a variety of different ways. We like to think of it as not necessarily selling people equipment, but selling people opportunity."
By designing technology to help beginning farmers, we hope to help one of the the most crucial groups of entrepreneurs in the world: small farmers.
Chris Michael, Marketing Director and Co-Owner of Bright Agrotech, explains how we help these entrepreneurs succeed in what they do.
"Entrepreneurship is core to our understanding of what local, ground-up farmers look like. We encourage people to find a need in their community, assess those needs carefully and strategically, and then we help them get everything they need to to launch their farm and fill that need, including support from the Upstart Farmers community.
"Just like anything in entrepreneurship or business, there's not a clear road map, so there's a big crisis of confidence, especially in farming, which is a lonely pursuit to begin with. Having a community there to help you is so powerful when you're starting out.
"I'd say that [the crisis of confidence] is one of the biggest obstacles that small farmers face starting out. Funding is obviously another big one, but that just comes from people not understanding where you can funding from. There's a lot of mystery about starting a business- let alone starting and agriculture business.
Part of our business model and our company culture is that we don't just sell them equipment then wait for them to figure it out. Our support, training and empowerment process begins before you know what you're doing.
We train you, we help you figure out best practices and what mistakes to avoid. As soon as you come into the ZipGrow community you gain that support and empowerment."
This is how we support entrepreneurs. We hope that our help for small farmers means as much as the support given to Bright Agrotech in it's infancy.