Bad Girl Ventures
will hold a graduation event
for its first “Launch” class
at New Riff Distilling on Wednesday, June 15. The eight graduating businesses have just completed the “Launch” segment of BGV’s revamped “Explore, Launch, Grow” program, meaning they’re women entrepreneurs already somewhat established in their businesses and ready to take them to the next level.
BGV Executive Director Nancy Aichholz explains that the new format of Launch classes provide participants with a smaller, more intimate and more focused experience than they would have gotten in BGV’s previous class formats.
“We saw extreme growth from the day they started in Launch,” Aichholz says. “We were so impressed. This group was very supportive of each other, but they were all business. There was no messing around — these women were serious.”
The graduation event will give attendees a chance to learn about the companies, both through conversational networking and short 30-second pitches given by each business. The event will also feature tours of New Riff Distillery in Bellevue, refreshments and the presentation of a $25,000 investment loan award to the winning participant’s company.
Although BGV doesn’t directly fund all the participants of its classes, it does set them up to fundraise for capital on their own. The organization is also trying a new peer-to-peer fundraising platform on its Facebook page
to encourage individuals to fundraise and become funders.
In addition to the pitches and awards, the event’s keynote speaker will be Kenton County Judge Executive Kris Knochelmann, speaking about the innovation and entrepreneurship boom in Northern Kentucky. The choice of speaker is particularly appropriate as BGV is preparing to move into its new permanent facility
in downtown Covington in about a month.
“We really want it to be a resource center for all female entrepreneurs,” Aichholz says of the new Pike Street space. “I think it’s going to be very exciting.”
Aichholz says the space will allow BGV to continue to expand, including fully kick-starting its “Grow” workshops in the fall. Those workshops, the final puzzle piece of the “Explore, Launch, Grow” system, will offer la carte classes and discussions of issues of interest to women entrepreneurs but, unlike most of BGV programming, will also be open to men.