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Creative Startups Transitions its “Libraries as Launchpads” Program Online, Free for Entrepreneurs Impacted by COVID19

Group of people working at laptops

Launchpads participants will be connected to a digital community and resources

Photo of a woman working on cash flow on a white sheet of paper

Launchpads curriculum is designed with Creative Startups Lead Faculty, Dr. Lena Ramfelt

The redesigned program will continue at no cost through end of May to support New Mexico's creative entrepreneurs impacted by coronavirus

We are making the resource widely available so businesses across the state can learn what they need to adapt, and also to connect with other owners who face similar uphill battles.”
— Alice Loy, CEO & Co-Founder

SANTA FE, NEW MEXICO, UNITED STATES, March 24, 2020 / -- Creative Startups today announced it will be offering its Libraries as Launchpads program online at no cost to creative entrepreneurs through the end of May. Re-designed to meet the urgent challenges business owners face due to coronavirus, the four-week program helps entrepreneurs navigate the current economic downturn.

“New Mexico business owners in hospitality, entertainment, and especially, restaurants, are facing daunting challenges as this crisis expands. Our primary concern is their survival” says Alice Loy, CEO of Creative Startups. “We are making the resource widely available so businesses across the state can learn what they need to adapt, and also to connect with other owners who face similar uphill battles.”

Creative Startups’ acceleration programs have been a hybrid of online and in-person learning since the organization launched accelerators in 2013. “We knew online tools would be helpful for entrepreneurs across the state, but in this moment of crisis we now know online accessibility is absolutely essential,” says Axie Navas, Director of the Outdoor Recreation Department for the State of New Mexico. The Outdoor Recreation Office, launched by Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham in 2019, is leading the state’s efforts to support small businesses in the growing outdoor recreation industry. The Launchpads program is presented in partnership with the New Mexico State Library and the Office of Outdoor Recreation to support the growth of businesses in the outdoor recreation industry.

While Creative Startups had planned to host Libraries as Launchpads as in-person classes in New Mexico public libraries this spring and fall, it has spent the past weeks moving the program to be 100% accessible online in response to the needs of small businesses during the coronavirus crisis. Creative Startups Lead Faculty Lena Ramfelt said, “While we can’t get together, we can still support our local businesses. We’ve adapted all elements of the program -- the Launchpads’ workbook, online modules, and faculty engagement with founders -- to be immediately accessible to entrepreneurs and to help them map out a plan of action.” Creative Startups hopes to be able to offer the in-person program in the fall in Libraries across New Mexico.

“Libraries are often the first places people go to find new information or get help on a particular challenge. We are still that place - just online for the foreseeable future”, says Eli Guinnee, New Mexico’s State Librarian. “And we know in tough economic times, people need their libraries even more,” he concluded.

Creative Startups opens the Launchpads today at Interested businesses can click on the link and will be invited to a self-guided, go at their own pace course. The course includes four modules, case studies, worksheets and readings.

Additionally, Creative Startups’ Faculty will begin hosting free webinars through mid-May to support business owners as they overcome current challenges including diminishing cash flows, moving to online sales, pivoting to new products and sale channels. The webinars will be hosted on Mondays, beginning March 30th.

Creative Startups was founded in Santa Fe in 2007 and since 2013 has accelerated 230 companies and now operates on four continents. Their alumni companies (including notable New Mexico companies like Meow Wolf, Native Realities / Indigenous PopX, and Etkie) have generated nearly $80 million in new revenue and created 670 jobs. Creative Startups is committed to investing in founders whose uncompromising commitment to their creative vision leads to impactful companies and a better future for us all.

Julia Youngs
Creative Startups
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