Grand Enterprise Initiative helps with 113th new job | SkyHiNews.com

Grand Enterprise Initiative helps with 113th new job

Sky-Hi News Staff Report

The Grand Enterprise Initiative, now in its fifth year in Grand County, has helped set up 53 new businesses and has announced the 113th new job its efforts have helped to create in Grand County. The grass roots economic development effort has added an estimated annual $4.7 million in annual new sales in the county while having served 245 clients since January of 2013, according to Enterprise Facilitator Patrick Brower.

Through the initiative, Brower provides free and confidential business management coaching to anyone wanting to start or expand businesses across the county. The program started in the Granby area in 2012 but expanded to a countywide program in 2013.

"We're very happy with these numbers and we feel they show how the Grand Enterprise Initiative has been working well to fulfill its mission of building strong communities by nurturing entrepreneurs in all of Grand County," said Merrit Linke, president of the Grand Enterprise Initiative's management board. The initiative is a 501©3 nonprofit and other members of the board include Marise Cipriani, owner of Granby Ranch and Wally Baird of Granby. These numbers show that we are making an impact by working with local residents who want to start new businesses or improve their existing businesses.

Brower and his management team have been trained in the principles of Enterprise Facilitation, a business coaching methodology pioneered around the world by Ernesto Sirolli, the founder of the Sirolli Institute. There are enterprise facilitation projects in place in Australia, New Zealand, across the U.S. and in Europe. The Grand Enterprise Initiative is the first and only project in Colorado.

"I work with clients in Winter Park, Fraser, Granby, Grand Lake and Kremmling," Brower said. "My goal is to help entrepreneurs with new business ideas or existing businesses understand what it takes to succeed. I facilitate basic business management."

Some recent business successes that were aided by Brower and the Initiative include the new Idlewild Spirits Distillery in Winter Park, Main Street Thrift store in Granby, Momma B's Restaurant in Hot Sulphur Springs, PINE Restaurant in Grand Lake, Fraser Electronics in Fraser, O22you (non-prescription oxygen delivery service), Stillwater Garage Doors, Lion Head Coffee, the opening of Never Summer Brewing Company in Granby and the acquisition of High Country Machine and Fabrication in Kremmling.

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The program is funded by a variety of public and private sources that include Grand County, local municipalities, and private entities such as Freeport-McMoran and Marise Cipriani. It operates under the non-profit umbrella of Kapoks, an institution founded by Cipriani that is dedicated to building strong communities by nurturing entrepreneurs.

Anyone in the county with a business idea or with a business that wants to expand or improve can call Brower at 970-531-0632 or contact him by e-mail at patrickbrower@kapoks.org.

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