Inside Scoop: Entrepreneurs Look Forward to Year Ahead

inside-scoop--entrepreneurs-look-forward-to-year-ahead

Check out what these Ohio entrepreneurs are most anticipating in 2019

Whether you’re a firm believer in setting New Year’s resolutions or you’d rather dive into your plans headfirst, we asked some of Ohio’s very own movers and shakers how they prepare for a new year of goal setting, challenges and exciting opportunities. Here’s a look at the future of Ohio’s startup community from the entrepreneurs who shape it.

Dawn Dickson, CEO PopCom - Columbus, OH
Dawn Dickson, CEO
PopCom – Columbus, OH

What are some changes in your industry you’d like to see in 2019? More adoption of new and innovative hardware. More IoT connectivity, decrease the barrier of entry for small business to get into vending.

What are some new initiatives you’re looking to introduce in your company / you’d like to see in the startup community in general?
New initiatives we are introducing are blockchain for regulated retail products and our XPop security token. We are raising money through Start Engine on a Title III Reg D 506(c) and Reg CF campaign that allows us to solicit from the general public and take funds from both accredited and non-accredited investors in the form of a secure token offering (STO). I would like to see more founders take advantage of this new way to raise capital in 2019.

Your best advice for an entrepreneur in 2019:
Look into non-traditional ways to raise capital, raise from your network, acquire customers first, and raise institutional capital once you have traction.

Your New Year’s (entrepreneur) resolution for 2019:
Only go to conferences and events that will result in customer acquisition.

What you’re most looking forward to in 2019:
Finally launching our PopShop vending machine.


Arielle JordanArielle Jordan, Founder & CEO
Curafied – Dayton, OH

What are some changes in your industry you’d like to see in 2019?
Less junk in social media news feeds for more helpful, organized content

What are some new initiatives you’re looking to introduce in your company / you’d like to see in the startup community in general?
Leveraging other local startups and businesses as pilot users – we help them engage their digital audience, they help us gain traction. As startups coming out of the Midwest and competing with the coasts, we have to help and lean on each other.

Your best advice for an entrepreneur in 2019
Keep on keeping on! You’re one year closer to the Dream!


Francie Ruppert and Laura Borsky, Co-Founders SaferSit - Cincinnati, OHFrancie Ruppert and Laura Borsky, Co-Founders
SaferSit – Cincinnati, OH

What are some changes in your industry you’d like to see in 2019?
We are hoping more people choose to use small babysitting apps like SaferSit instead of the larger corporations.

What are some new initiatives you’re looking to introduce in your company / you’d like to see in the startup community in general?
We are all about women-owned businesses! We are excited to see even more females join the startup community in 2019. SaferSit would love to eventually get to a place where we could sponsor a women’s business scholarship.

Your best advice for an entrepreneur in 2019.
Use your mistakes to push you forward, not hold you back! There will be days where you want to give up but do your best to focus on the small wins which eventually add up to a big success.

Your New Year’s (entrepreneur) resolution for 2019.
SaferSit’s 2019 resolution is to expand into other markets similar to Cincinnati

What you’re most looking forward to in 2019.
We are so excited for the launch of our mobile web app! We have been waiting for what feels like forever!


Jeff SchumannJeff Schumann, CEO
Wiretap, Columbus OH

What are some changes in your industry you’d like to see in 2019?
In 2018, we saw the exposure of the many critical issues businesses face from lackluster privacy protection to the manifestation of toxic cultures that encourage the mistreatment of employees. In 2019, I’d love to see a much larger enterprise movement in making the appropriate investments to control their data, protect their people and safeguard their reputation

What are some new initiatives you’re looking to introduce in your company / you’d like to see in the startup community in general?
I’d love to see the creation of a more formal network that helps better connect students looking to learn more about startups and their opportunities with awesome employees who are eager to inspire and mentor tomorrow’s leaders.

Your best advice for an entrepreneur in 2019.
The best investment in your business is prioritizing an investment in yourself.

Your New Year’s (entrepreneur) resolution for 2019.
Spend more time understanding and investing in the micro adjustments we can make that will create macro-level value in the end.

What you’re most looking forward to in 2019.
One hell of a ride with one hell of a group of people.


Eric AllenEric Allen, CEO
LISNR – Cincinnati, OH

What are some changes in your industry you’d like to see in 2019?I don’t think LISNR is defined by a single industry as our technology scales across several.  With that being said, an area of focus for us and an area of change I’d like to see is in the payment space.  We need to move to a complete digital & frictionless shopping experience.

What are some new initiatives you’re looking to introduce in your company / you’d like to see in the startup community in general?
It’s less about new initiatives are more about areas of focus. For us its Value Creation, and while this is a focus of every business entity, I think it’s really important for a B2B2C company like us to understand more clearly where our initiatives are located within the various value chains we are a part of. Ultimately, every company needs to understand this if they want long term success. The scale doesn’t always offer value and many companies find that out once they try to monetize that value.

Your best advice for an entrepreneur in 2019
The capital markets are uncertain, I think entrepreneurs have to be fiscally sound as we’ve gone through a period of cheap capital that might not be so easy to come by in 2019.

Your New Year’s (entrepreneur) resolution for 2019
Focus

What you’re most looking forward to in 2019
We have some amazing customer launches and announcements that will start to fundamentally change how people shop. I’m really excited by this.


Michael Morgan, CEOMichael Morgan, CEO
Updox – Columbus, OH

What are some changes in your industry you’d like to see in 2019?
In 2019, more people will seek care outside of hospitals. Those community providers need to be ready. They have to manage their practices and pharmacies like businesses and treat patients as customers. They’ll need to use technology to offer the same conveniences that consumers expect from other businesses – like self-scheduling, online forms, electronic payments, text messaging options and faster test results. Out-of-hospital providers must take advantage of clear, secure, easy-to-use channels to connect with patients and each other for better care coordination, transitions of care and healthcare adherence – in ways that lower costs and improve outcomes. 

Your best advice for an entrepreneur in 2019
For most businesses – sales signify success. This is especially true for entrepreneurial companies, where those first sales really matter. But it’s also important to focus on the distribution side and ensure you are not simply selling by accident. The process has to be something you can replicate if you want to grow the business and increase your market. You can only do that by adding customers and ensuring a predictable sales process. It won’t matter that you have a wonderful product if you haven’t determined the best sales channels and strategies for getting your product into people’s hands. That predictability also allows entrepreneurs to better forecast sales and know the ideal time to invest back into their business.

What you’re most looking forward to in 2019
We’re on a hiring blitz at Updox and I’m excited by our continued growth and the opportunity to evolve our culture. We solve a big problem in healthcare and we look for specific strengths, talents and character when hiring new staff. Being developers, thought-leaders and innovators means we’re committed to changing how healthcare is delivered.

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