|Products||Workspace for startups, small businesses, freelancers and entrepreneurs|
|Brands||Venture Café, Venture Café Global, Innovation Hall, District Hall|
|Services||Shared workspaces and related services for entrepreneurs|
Venture Café is a nonprofit organization that hosts community events and programs that support early-stage entrepreneurs.
There are eight Venture Cafés in cities across the Midwest, South, and Northeastern regions of the United States, and in Tokyo, Japan; Rotterdam, The Netherlands; and Sydney, Australia. Each Venture Café is independently managed and runs the flagship program, the Thursday Gathering. Venture Café Providence was announced through a partnership with the city of Providence , and there are plans to open another Venture Café in Warsaw, Poland .
Venture Café Boston
The Venture Café was conceived as a restaurant located in the CIC in Boston, Massachusetts. The restaurant failed to attract investment and was reimagined as a gathering for the entrepreneurial community based on the book Venture Café by Teresa Esser. Venture Café Kendall launched in 2009.
Venture Café St. Louis
In 2014, Venture Café expanded to the Cortex Innovation Community in St. Louis, Missouri, to bring together the emerging startup community. The success of the St. Louis location prompted the launch of Venture Cafés in other cities and ultimately the creation of Venture Café Global Institute, a public benefit corporation based in both St. Louis and Boston.
In 2014, the City of Boston and Venture Café Kendall opened District Hall, a free drop-in workspace for entrepreneurs, including an event venue, restaurant and coffee shop. In 2018, as part of St. Louis Cortex District's new 4220 Duncan building anchored by Microsoft, Venture Cafe launches Innovation Hall in St. Louis based upon Boston's District Hall. The St. Louis location will also be the first to launch the Education Hub, also known as EdHub STL, a program supporting and bringing together innovators in education to benefit youth access to education. EdHub STL is inspired by the Forward Through Ferguson report which calls for an innovation education hub to address the region's most entrenched educational issues.
The flagship program of Venture Café is the Thursday Gathering, a weekly event that convenes new and experienced entrepreneurs to exchange ideas and support. The Thursday Gathering includes several free educational sessions aimed at entrepreneurs to learn how to start and run a business. The Gatherings are informal, allowing opportunity to discuss creative and speculative ideas and look for collaborators, co-founders, mentors, or investors.
Venture Cafés in St. Louis, Boston, and Philadelphia offer free drop-in workspace for entrepreneurs to work and collaborate in addition to paid event and meeting rooms and restaurants and coffeeshops.
Venture Café Foundation in Boston runs the Roxbury Innovation Center and St. Louis launched EdHub STL in 2018. Both programs bring together innovators in education including students, parents, administration, and teachers to help solve inequities in education and introduce youth to entrepreneurship and STEAM activities.
Café Nights are monthly or quarterly versions of the Thursday Gathering located outside the weekly event.
- Venture Café Foundation Official Website
- Venture Café St. Louis Official Website
- Venture Café Sydney Official Website
- Venture Café The Success Story of a coworking space.
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