Digital Sandbox KC Leads the Charge for Local Economic Growth

Another win for the Kansas City startup community: Digital Sandbox KC, a Kansas City-based startup incubator, recently shared its effect on growing the local economy through funding and mentoring early-stage businesses. Launched in 2013 by entrepreneur Jeff Shackleford, Digital Sandbox KC provides proof-of-concept resources and support to early-stage companies throughout the commercialization process by granting access to technology, business and market experts as well as funding. Shackleford says their mission was to improve the quantity and quality of early-stage startups in Kansas City in order to drive new businesses and create new jobs, and a recent study proves the incubator is continuing to fulfill that mission.

According to Startland News, since its inception in 2013, the incubator has already invested $1.7 million to 85 companies which has resulted in dozens of new products, hundreds of jobs and millions in payroll. The incubator awards an average of $20,600 to each early-stage company for a specific project. Twice a year, Digital Sandbox KC surveys the companies it works with and compiles the data to evaluate the economical impact of their efforts. This year’s results were particularly impressive.

The report found that startups under the Digital Sandbox KC umbrella have gone on to raise about $38.2 million in follow-on funding, created 480 jobs in the area and boast more than $12 million in payroll for their employees. Digital Sandbox also reported the startups have generated $7.3 million in sales over the past six months and, collectively, more than $22 in sales since its launch.

Twentyseven Global has several close connections to the Digital Sandbox and the Kansas City entrepreneurial landscape. Steve Roatch, founder and chief executive officer of Twentyseven Global and active angel investor, has invested in Digital Sandbox graduates.  Furthermore, Twentyseven Global has worked with three Digital Sandbox funded startups to build their minimally viable products (MVPs), all of whom have gone on to successfully raise additional funding.

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