Startups aren't just for Silicon Valley anymore. As entrepreneurs find expected pleasures—and great quality of life—in cities like Cincinnati, a new kind of energy is building. Read about the rise of our startup sister cities, from Boston to Denver.
What do a dairy barn in Mt. Healthy and this year's TED conference have in common? A shared love of top-quality coffee from a Guatemalan village that locals know thanks to relationships nurtured with Deeper Roots, a local roasting company and coffee consultancy.
In Cincinnati, Cleveland and East Baltimore, major employers are anchoring massive new developments in a full-on effort to remake their cities. Strong partnerships and shared visions are essential elements for success.
The Cintrifuse venture capital team is already working on supporting the region's entrepreneurial ecosystem. Now, it's time to see how The Rainmaker, The Money Man, The Go Getter, The Teacher, The Connector, The Youngster and The Magician Behind the Curtain plan to get down to business.
Cincinnati native Jodi Schmidtgoesling takes on the world's top companies in her new role as branding giant Possible's chief client officer. The 35-year-old business leader also works to develop the culture of Possible as a fun, innovative and creative place to work. She talks with Soapbox about Cincinnati as a brand hub and finding inspiration in Disney characters.
Laura Chenault took an abandoned garage on Spring Grove Avenue and transformed it into a space for everything from filming indie documentaries and music videos to hosting cooking classes, dinner parties and dance parties, too. But she didn’t do it alone.
What happens when the city, neighborhood advocates and a national redevelopment firm collaborate to transform outdated and underutilized public housing in Avondale? They snag a $29.5M federal grant aimed at holistic renewal.
At Soapbox, job listings have always been popular landing pages for regular readers, browsers and job seekers. Starting today, thanks to a partnership with local startup GigitJobs.com, readers can find even more creative and techie jobs for the taking in Greater Cincinnati.
When it comes to the fast-evolving world of health care, Cincinnati's startup community is attracting fans from the White House on down, in part by focusing on fast failures as well as lasting ideas.
A growing number of ex-P&Gers are branching out from the Ivory Towers and starting their own businesses, using the training and experience they gained at the brand-creating giant while pursuing their own entrepreneurial dreams.
Cincinnati and its corporate giants attract designers from across the globe, but the minority gap still looms large. Read how local black design professionals have adjusted and adapted while working to recruit and retain their peers.
Cross the quirkiness of a Silicon Valley start-up with the genuine affection of a Midwestern community and you begin to grasp the creative forces that drive Epipheo. With an office in Portland, Oregon, and headquarters in Longworth Hall, the convention-defying company's core values—"truth, story, love"—make it as appealing to a growing number of employees as it is to high-powered clients like Google, Facebook and MTV.
What do shoe-making workshops, recycled sketch paper and Portolets have in common? They're all part of Main Street entrepreneur Alisha Budkie's sustainable world, one the UC design alum is helping build with support from longtime neighbors and a growing army of her peers in Over-the-Rhine.
They are young, high-powered, high-achieving, highly skilled professionals with their sights set on the same thing: success in Cincinnati, start-up style. Read where they are working — and why.
In the past year and a half, neighborhoods around Cincinnati have found a new tool to help turn empty storefronts into future restaurants and centers of activity with Community Entertainment District designation.
Look for Queen City Cookie's reigning royalty, founder Peggy Shannon, driving a pink, elephant-adorned "schnecken shack" starting next week. The city's newest food truck will house plenty of sweets and lots of new creations, from pig pockets to donut toast. And it will be hard to miss. Shannon gives Soapbox the scoop on truck menus and elephant art, selling to Dean and Deluca and building a new Cincinnati landmark within an historic one.
Loading up a yellow GMC Rally with luggage, goldfish crackers and a few bags of clementines for a 19-hour road trip to Austin, Texas, to spend five days at South By Southwest may not sound like a typical work week. But for Brian Penick, founder of the Counter Rhythm Group, it was the perfect example of how his work and play can go hand in hand.
Terry Chan came to Cincinnati via Hong Kong and Carnegie Mellon. His plans for the Short Vine Innovation District reflect an international perspective on successful neighborhood redevelopment. With long-term and new investors, he's helping create a technological hub of early-stage, vibrant businesses that's built to last.
From digital pros to sleep-deprived StartUp Bus riders, Cincinnatians at SXSW Interactive staked a claim at the country's premier showcase of new ideas and cool technologies destined to shape the way we live, work and play. Soapbox gives you exclusive insights from five attendees about what it was like to live the SXSW Interactive experience.
An international modeling career, a short stint as a magazine editor and owner of two small businesses sounds like a full resume after a decades-long career. But Cincinnati native Margeurite Swallow has accomplished all that, and more, at age 23. Her latest venture, a commercially-licensed community kitchen in Over-the-Rhine, continues to evolve.
As he steps in to the newly created role of general manager of The Brandery in OTR, Mike Bott, at just 30, is ready to give ambitious startups the tools they need to survive, and thrive, in Cincinnati.
In week two of her SpringBoard journey, the unseasoned entreprenuer explores her motivations, her hopes and her fears.
A bicycle built for 15 hits the streets of downtown Cincinnati next month -- Soapbox gets the scoop from Pedal Wagon pusher and Unplugged co-founder Jack Heekin.
In East Walnut Hills, shopkeepers and customers are on a first-name basis. They know that making connections, and keeping them strong, helps attract, and retain, dedicated followers. The same goes for attracting new entrepreneurs to help fill in the empty spaces in the historic, and as yet not fully settled, part of town.
This month, Delmond Montgomery moves back home to his wife and children for the first time in more than a year. As one of the first hires at Green Recycling Works, his job is to make it easy for businesses to recycle. As a graduate of the year-long Exodus Program for men in recovery, he's also working to show that sometimes, in this case with the help of social enterprise, you really can go home again.
When Venture For America's founder Andrew Yang landed in town to chat with local entrepreneurs about his nonprofit's ambitious plans to help create 100,000 jobs by 2025, Soapbox was there to meet him at the airport.
Urban school teachers have a daily impact on our most important community assets -- our children. When they succeed, we all succeed. Today marks the launch of Together We Educate, tweducate.org, a website dedicated to attracting, supporting and retaining the best and brightest teachers to work, live and grow in Greater Cincinnati.
As the "placemaking" approach to development gains momentum across the country, cities from Detroit to Pittsburgh offer strong case studies for giving local residents and stakeholders a major voice in shaping their cities' futures.
As grade-schoolers play in the "Energy Zone" filled with bright-colored balls at the Duke Energy Children's Museum, they learn about simple machines the fun way. Training teachers to guide students through field-trip science activities expands the reach, and impact, of every lesson. At Cincinnati's Social Innovation Fund, which supports a wide range of educational programs including teacher training, creating lasting learning makes for measurable successes.
From an homage to Frank Duveneck to an original C.F. Payne to the spoils of a TED prize, MuralWorks by ArtWorks brightens more than city walls.We tour of a few of the finest with Soapbox photographer Scott Beseler.
As cities realize the importance of attracting and retaining talent, smaller development projects and neighborhood investment are becoming a crucial part of some cities' revitalization efforts.
While Cincinnati may not typically be considered an enclave for Latin American emigres on par with Miami or Los Angeles, the city has its fair share of Latino ties. Latino and hispanic professionals, artists, university students, and workers are making their mark in a city that was handcrafted by waves of immigrants. This June, the City and its Latino community will celebrate this latest wave as proud hosts of the national LULAC convention.
The numbers don't lie: while most areas across the country are watching young, talented professionals move away, a new study says zip codes like downtown Cincinnati's 45202 are seeing an increase in college educated professionals seeking urban amenities and the opportunity to make a difference.
Two successful business veterans give hope to chronically unemployed workers with a company focused on building brands, creating jobs and changing lives in Cincinnati's inner-city.
Former Hamilton County Coroner, Dr. O'dell Owens, took the reigns of Cincinnati State last fall. In this month's My Soapbox, he talks about the important role technical and community colleges play in sustaining innovation, cultivating economic development, and bridging the gap for non-traditional students.
Hotels, revitalized retail and the elusive grocery store blossom in downtown. Light rail attempts a comeback. A home-grown music festival turns ten. Dogs having their day. These are just some of the things Soapbox will be watching in 2011.
The 3C passenger rail plan would link Ohio's major cities and provide connections to regional hubs in Chicago and on the East Coast, but Ohio's next governor doesn't want it. How about you Cincinnati?
Meet the creative minds behind Northern Kentucky-based ZoomEssence, a nimble research and development firm working to make over the powder flavor industry.
As many residents learned this spring, Cincinnati has a runoff problem. Enter "Project Groundwork," the first phase of a public works project designed to counter stormwater and sewer problems using innovative green solutions.
From opening restaurants and exploring the world's most hyped consumer market to forging official ties, a growing number of local ambassadors are building a strong bridge between the Queen City and China.
On Tuesday, National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) chairman Rocco Landesman is coming to Cincinnati to talk arts at the invitation of ArtsWave (the arts supporting organization formerly known as the Fine Arts Fund). Since joining the NEA in 2009, Landesman has been on the road discussing the role of arts and culture as a component of sustainable and livable communities. His trip to Cincinnati will mirror visits he has made across the country to learn how 'art works' in neighborhoods and towns. Prior to his visit to Cincinnati he took some time to answer our questions about his vision for the arts and the role public institutions have in supporting organizations, programs, and individuals who make 'art work.'
In the life of business start-ups, the great idea is only the first small step. So five lucky start-ups are getting the chance to learn from Cincinnati's master brand strategists and market research gurus as they take part in the first ever 12-week program at The Brandery, a new business accelerator that is luring promising young companies to Southwest Ohio.
The second annual Cincinnati Innovates competition is giving creative thinkers around town a chance to show what they've got. But ideas need capital to fly. As such, the need for communication between investors and those seeking funds is greater than ever. Yet, many Cincinnati innovators are unable to access the capital on tap in their own backyard. Soapbox's Jonathan DeHart talks with a few local experts on investment and innovation to learn what can be done to change the picture.
Thanks to a wealth of local talent and exceptional natural beauty Cincinnati has what it takes to attract moviemakers. The filmmaking industry is in the midst of one of the biggest transitions in its history as producers look beyond Hollywood for locations to shoot and set up studios. Aggressive tax credits from states around the country including Ohio are luring the business away from California as cities like Cincinnati roll out the red carpet to get in on the action.
From punk rocker and hip cafe owner to software maverick and internet entrepreneur, Cincinnati resident John Knodel has worn many hats. In his latest incarnation, Knodel is cofounder of Online Rewards, a one-stop online shop for incentive and customer loyalty marketing programs that is using innovative software and creative thinking to outbid long established competitors and put Cincinnati on the map in this highly competitive industry.
The College of Design, Art, Architecture, and Planning opened its doors last week to celebrate the work of its graduating seniors. The annual DAAPWorks event presents senior theses from over 400 students from the college. While some of these students will seek design jobs on the East and West coasts, many graduates are finding the opportunities here too good to pass up.
This October, Cincinnati will welcome TEDxCincy - a locally produced and independently organized event modeled after the uber-popular TEDTalks - you know the ones all over Youtube that have featured tech giants like Bill Gates and rockstars and activists like Peter Gabriel and Jane Goodall. Soapbox gets the exciting scoop on TEDxCincy from event co-chair Michael Bergman.
This week Soapbox writer Alyce Vilines continues her look at some of Greater Cincinnati's unconventional office spaces. From a former turn-of-the-century steam laundry turned video production studio (that collaborates with P.Diddy) to a humble looking art studio housed along Central Parkway that partnered with the Vatican, our region's diverse work spaces are well equipped for housing innovative, cool ideas and the people that make them a reality.
A day at the office takes on a whole new meaning for local businesses who are taking unconventional office spaces, transforming them into architectural gems, and enhancing their corporate culture along the way. This week and next, Soapbox writer Alyce Vilines spotlights six area companies that do business in the coolest spaces.
Historically, large scale European immigration to Cincinnati tapered off by the late 19th Century. But today the Queen City is attracting a new wave of euro-transplants who are plugging into the city and making it their own. Not unlike their 19th Century predecessors, they're coming for high end jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities, but staying for more than just the chili. Soapbox's Jon DeHart shares a few of their stories.
Innovation. High pay. Economic competitiveness. It will take all three to secure the economic future of Ohio, say Ohio Third Frontier supporters. The nearly decade-old economic development program is pushing Ohio forward by directing investment dollars to local companies that represent those fundamentals. Soapbox's Innovation and Job News Editor, Feoshia Henderson, takes a look at why Third Frontier is Ohio's, and Cincinnati's bright investment for the future.
People move to Cincinnati for the cost of living and the family-friendly atmosphere, right? While our cozy neighborhoods and steady real estate market continue to rate high marks nationally, that's the old story about what's bringing transplants to Cincinnati. Forward-thinking companies with an international presence are drawing in many of Cincinnati's newest residents who can't stop talking about Fountain Square, our extensive park system, the Symphony, hot independent restaurants and more once they get here. Hailing from Minnesota, Los Angeles, Florida, and even Kenya, Soapbox takes a look at four recent transplants and finds out what attracted them to their newly adopted city.
Soapdish columnist Casey Coston sits down for a couple of local brews with Christian Moerlein CEO Greg Hardman to discuss the Cincinnati beer brand's historic past and future plans. Hardman shares details about the Moerlein Lager House that is part of the Banks' development and a special new beer coming this May that celebrates the "Liberty" part of "life, liberty, & the pursuit of good beer."
Could Israel be the new economic engine that spurs business growth here in Cincinnati? That's what some Cincinnati business leaders are betting as they woo energetic entrepreneurs from Israel, a country that boasts one of the most innovative economies in the world and has more companies on the NASDAQ exchange than the entire continent of Europe.
Thirty years ago we based paint with lead and insulated our homes with toxic asbestos - and while Cincinnati's existing comprehensive plan might not be outright poisonous, thirty years after its drafting, we live in a world that it couldn't account for, and with knowledge it could only imagine at the time. Enter Plan Cincinnati, the beginning of the city's first comprehensive plan since the 70s - which seeks to answer the questions who are we as a city? and what do we want to become?
It all starts with a little seed, and like seedlings in a hothouse, young companies need the right environment to grow before being unleashed into harsher environments. Enter a group of Cincinnati area business incubators that help nurture the growth of innovative ideas and creative technology with low rent, a guiding hand, and a network of support. The result? Local job creation and small businesses that can grow as big as a tree.
Small science is becoming big business for the Queen City. The University of Cincinnati has joined forces with local innovative businesses to transfer some of today's most cutting edge science in the nanotechnology field out of the lab and into the market.
The first Downtown skyscraper in 20 years gets her crown, a contemporary theatre group creates Cincinnati's first LGBT Theatre Festival, a pioneering vegetarian eatery gets a new life and the completion of the nation's first K-12 arts school are just some of the things Soapbox will be watching in 2010.
The old model of assigned cubicles and sanctioned coffee breaks is being rejected by the next generation of talent. Two local businesses demonstrate an advanced understanding of how and where we work has a direct affect on productivity.
Two of Cincinnati's most innovative organizations, Procter & Gamble and the University of Cincinnati, have formed a unique collaboration that has twenty-something college students researching new ideas and creating products for aging baby boomers and their significant wealth. This national model for private sector and academic cooperation taps into Cincinnati's established and upcoming talent base and expands the city's reputation as a leader in product innovation.
Learn how Brazil's loss is Cincinnati's gain from Tazza Mia founder, Bob Bonder, who is opening his fourth location in Greater Cincinnati. In addition to beating out a host of other US cities to serve as the company's headquarters, the local coffeehouse/restaurant chain now has ambitious plans to grow by five locations a year and implement innovative concepts in each new spot. As Cincinnati's second largest coffee chain, Tazza Mia wants to fill that niche between the ubiquitous Starbucks and smaller, independent retailers.
Ever wonder what the little green symbol on the left side of Soapbox's homepage is? If you've been sharing content with your Facebook friends or email contacts then you're probably familiar with the 'ShareThis' symbol - but did you know its the brainchild of a Cincinnati based start-up that hopes to become the big name in online sharing?
What do you do when the economy's tough but you need answers to retaining and attracting a talented workforce? You convene the experts - and that's just what Cincinnati USA is doing next week by bringing the top minds on talent retention to town to discuss the impact of the recession and how to recruit the next generation of talent during lean times.
With a well known reputation as a premier medical research city, Cincinnati is becoming a breeding ground for health care innovation companies that are developing important products in fields from surgical instrumentation to diagnostic testing and clinical research. Soapbox highlights seven of these companies and finds out why Cincinnati is becoming a life sciences innovation hub.
What makes a city a 'music city'? Is it a homogeneous, definable sound, or something more? Could it be an attitude, or is it simply how well we value music as 'art'? And how do true musical cities nurture and develop artists in their midst? The 8th annual Midpoint Music Festival is one answer that celebrates our 'music city', and questions what it takes to sustain it.
Out of work and making a difference. That's what some unemployed and retired business people are doing, getting involved with one of the region's most unique business service organziations - a nonprofit that uses local executive talent to help other nonprofits. And there are plenty that could use the help with over 10,000 501(c) organizations in the region.
From the Minute Clinic to Job Search Boot Camp, entrepreneurship seminars to alternative co-op programs - our local university career centers are collaborating and getting innovative to help grads find jobs in a tough market. And they're building a regional talent network that can offer a helping hand to future alums along the way.
He's no cheerleader, but graphic designer Chad Reynolds' innovative internship-based approach to marketing high school spirit wear gets students fired up. Fanattik teaches high schoolers how to run a startup business, be their own boss and even provides them with a competitive edge in the college search process. Grooming the next generation of entrepreneurs is Reynolds way of giving back to the early mentors who advised his successful design career. Already in 25 local schools, Fanattik plans on going national this fall.
Do you have what it takes to start a company? InOneWeekend 2009 is the high pressure, resource constrained, blue sky environment that will test your leadership skills - from idea, to plan, to prototype, to pitch. All in plain view of the venture community. And you can keep your day job. If you choose to.
It would seem the coffee shop business is nearly recession-proof. At least that's what Tony Tausch is finding as the owner of three Cincinnati Coffee Emporium shops and a growing wholesale business for his own roasted coffee beans. Tausch is beating the recession one cup at a time while giving the big chain roasters a local lesson in coffee craftsmanship.
Fearless inventors and entrepreneurs: You have one more week to enter Cincinnati Innovates, a regional competition open to anyone who has an innovation, idea, or invention and a Greater Cincinnati connection. The competition, which has received close to 175 entries, is designed to showcase the technological, artistic, and ingenious innovations of all Cin-novators.
Soapdish columnist Casey Coston is a lover of newspapers. This week he examines the ever transforming local print media including the Enquirer's recent stunning editorial calling to table the city's streetcar project.
Cincinnati's streetcar proposal and Ohio's plan to bring back
Cleveland-Columbus-Cincinnati Amtrak are the most visible local signals
of long-simmering plans to move far more people and goods by rail.
In the last 15 years, KHI Foods in Burlington has turned a humble honey sales
operation into an innovative local foods powerhouse bringing Kentucky crops to the national market while feeding the region's manufacturing industry.
With so much attention lauded on Vine Street's recent makeover, local artists are working hard to make sure OTR's other main thoroughfare is not forgotten. Jessie Cundiff, along with a slew of other gallery and shop owners, are keeping Main Street relevant.
University of Cincinnati’s School of Design, Art, Architecture and Planning (DAAP) produces an impressive class of fashion designers each year who are ready to begin their careers at fashion heavyweights such as Vera Wang, Macy’s, Liz Claiborne and Abercrombie and Fitch.