By Neil Johnson
The Janesville Gazette, Wis.
WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Through a new partnership between, gBeta and Irontek, companies in the early stages of the startup cycle will receive the help they need to beef up business strategies, refine products and connect with potential investors.
Willow Macy calls herself “the Swiss Army knife” of her Beloit tech startup company, Classmunity.
Macy handles sales and marketing and public relations for the company offering software to manage school fundraisers. Soon, if the company grows as planned, Macy could be in charge of training new, full-time employees, too.
A new business accelerator program, gBeta, which is partnering at Diane Hendricks’ Irontek in Beloit, is helping sharpen Macy’s skills.
Macy’s Classmunity and five other Beloit-area tech companies are enrolled in the new business accelerator program launched this spring at Irontek. It’s being run by gener8or, a Madison and Milwaukee-based business accelerator program.
The gBeta program is free to those enrolled. It runs as six weeks of daily meetings with gBeta directors at Irontek, a business incubator in Hendricks’ Ironworks complex in downtown Beloit.
Through the new program, gBeta helps local companies in early stages of startup beef up their business strategies, refine their product or service pitches and connect with potential investors that could help them grow.
Classmunity, which Macy said was founded by a UW-Whitewater professor in 2015, helps school administrators manage school and classroom fundraisers and keep the money fundraisers bring in more secure from start to finish.
The company already has 10 Wisconsin school districts as clients. Classmunity has five employees but is poised to expand its reach statewide and even regionally–potentially into Michigan, Minnesota and Illinois, Macy said.
She said that logistically her company could be on track to grow fast, but it’s trying to raise about $250,000 in investor capital to do so.