Three Northern Kentucky-based companies received grants from Main Street Ventures during the organization’s third quarter round of funding.
Main Street Ventures is an entrepreneur support organization that helps people with business ideas through grant funding and other assistance.
Businesses can apply for two different types of grants through the company.
The first is the “Launch Grant,” with $5,000 to $10,000 in funds; it is intended for pre-revenue companies. These companies must show direct customer engagement to legitimize the business model.
The second grant is called the “Leap Grant,” which gives $10,000 to $30,000 in funding to revenue-generating businesses. This grant focuses on the business’s community impact and long-term survival. This grant is typically awarded to companies that show continued growth in creating regional jobs.
The three companies that received funding from the current cycle are:
Toot Suite Press is an online wedding stationery studio offering modern, customizable designs made on traditional printing presses. Toot Suite Press was one of the companies from this cycle to receive Launch Grant funding.
In the Curious Kitchen is a female-owned and founded brand creating things like cocktail kits and gourmet treats inspired by bluegrass country. In the Curious Kitchen received Leap Grant funding from quarter three.
Find In the Curious Kitchen at the Tower Park Mess Hall in Fort Thomas on Oct. 2, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Cutman Barbershop, located at 5 W. Pike St. in Covington, is a barbershop providing traditional men’s grooming services with a mission to build communities through the art of barbering and acts of service. The barbershop received Leap Grant funding from quarter three.
In a July interview with LINK nky, Main Street Ventures Executive Lead Brianna Dzuricsko said around 50 to 60 companies typically apply per grant cycle, and the company normally accepts five to seven applicants. She noted that they do make exceptions. In quarter two of their funding, they approved 10 companies and had up to 13 companies accepted in the past.
Dzuricsko said that number has continued to expand since they started in 2018, making it a competitive program.
This time around, in quarter three, 15 companies were accepted from around the Greater Cincinnati area and provided with over $240,000 in funding.
Director of Community Engagement and Entrepreneur Support Abby Ober told LINK nky in a July interview that after a company receives the grant, they go through a needs assessment to address specific needs. Once they go through the evaluation, those targeted areas can be discussed, such as if the company needs help with marketing, they would be connected to a marketing mentor.
Ober also helps businesses with something called a learning plan. The plan is designed through Main Street Venture’s online course content, workshops, and connections to mentors or investors.
“We want to make sure it’s not just here’s the check; see you later,” Ober said in a July interview. “We want to make sure we grow our community and continue that relationship with them as long as they like it.”