Kauffman Foundation brings Startup Weekend into affiliate fold
A pair of nonprofit organizations that play a prominent role in promoting entrepreneurship on the Silicon Prairie — and across the globe — will now do so in even closer conjunction.
The Kansas City, Mo.-based Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation today announced that Startup Weekend is now an affiliate of the foundation. Seattle-based Startup Weekend, which runs a global series of events for entrepreneurs, aspiring founders and startup supporters, will continue to operate autonomously. But the affiliation with the Kauffman Foundation is expected to allow Startup Weekend to increase its geographic reach, conduct more frequent events and build long-term sustainability.
“Startup Weekend has had phenomenal growth and impact," Startup Weekend CEO Mark Nager said in a release, "but as a Kauffman affiliate, we will now be able to scale that progress and expand our capabilities.”
Previously, Startup Weekend has received grant money from the Kauffman Foundation. Now, the foundation will also provide Startup Weekend and its 15-person core team services like back-office support, meaning Startup Weekend can shift its focus to its core mission.
"Now with affiliate status, they're helping … to free us up to do what we do best," Maris McEdward, Startup Weekend's community manager, said today by phone.
Startup Weekend aims to provide experiential entrepreneurial education and help build communities, both of which are aligned with the Kauffman Foundation’s mission to advance entrepreneurship. Startup Weekend also complements the array of programs that Kauffman is associated with in the entrepreneur ecosystem.
“We are pleased to bring Startup Weekend even closer inside the Kauffman Foundation family,” Nick Seguin, the Kauffman Foundation's manager of entrepreneurship, said in the release. “The support and services we are able to provide through this relationship will serve to strengthen the operational base of one of the most effective grassroots entrepreneurship initiatives in the world.”
Today's is the second announcement this fall that signals a continued strengthening of the bond between the Kauffman Foundation and Startup Weekend. As we reported in September, Startup Weekend named a board of directors to oversee it and the Startup Foundation, and Seguin and Kauffman Foundation president and CEO Carl Schramm were among the eight-person board.