From Humble Beginnings
Endeavor was founded in 1997 with a simple thesis…That there are great entrepreneurs and great companies everywhere, but often times lack the same access points to talent, markets, and capital that are afforded to those based in Austin, Boston, New York, or Silicon Valley.
For 20 plus years, Endeavor has been working in underserved and overlooked markets around the world to provide entrepreneurs access to talent, markets, and capital so they may ultimately scale up, go big, and give back in their respective markets. Today, Endeavor operates in 33 countries and 6 U.S. markets. In 2017, Endeavor Entrepreneur-led businesses generated over $15 billion in revenue and employed over 1.5 million people across the globe. That is no small feat.
In March of 2015, Endeavor launched its third U.S. office, headquartered in Louisville, Kentucky. Today, we are a regional hub for high-growth entrepreneurs, supporting founders across Kentucky, Indiana, and Ohio.
Following the launch, we set out to find the foundational Endeavor Entrepreneurs in our region that would set the tone for all the growth opportunities we see today. These efforts have resulted in our region participating in 15 International Selection Panels, which are the culmination of Endeavor’s rigorous selection process. In fact, Endeavor’s selection rate into the global network is 2.5%; lower than the admission rate of Harvard.
Fostering a Global Community
Spanning these 15 International Selection Panels, where in the world have Endeavor Entrepreneurs been? The short answer, everywhere: Latin America, Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and all across the United States. Endeavor Entrepreneurs from our region are engaging in the global economy with the very best business leaders, investors, and peer entrepreneurs.
Not only that, Endeavor has brought this wonderful global community to our market. In 2016, we hosted a global Food & Beverage Industry Tour, bringing entrepreneurs from 10 countries to Louisville. In 2018, we hosted an Endeavor International Selection Panel with over 150 attendees spanning 15 countries and numerous U.S. cities. Endeavor has quite literally put our region on the map for high-growth entrepreneurship!
Our Entrepreneurs are the heart and soul of all that we do at Endeavor. Once a new entrepreneur is selected into the network, we get to work removing barriers and providing curated access to talent, markets, and capital. A few ways we’ve provided growth & leadership support include:
- Attending Harvard Business School & Stanford Business School
- Working with our partners, both regionally and globally, at EY to solve a critical business needs
- Individually tapping into the vast Endeavor Mentor Network when & as needed
- Forming Endeavor Advisory Board’s with executives and entrepreneurs from companies such as Coca-Cola, LinkedIn, Humana, Rubicon Global, etc…
- Access to markets geographically and via partner opportunities
- Capital guidance via our Mentor Capital Program
- Reaching into our robust Endeavor Investor Network, a venerable group with some of the best venture capital and growth stage investors in the world
- Having Endeavor co-invest via our venture capital fund, Catalyst
With Catalyst, Endeavor is always pre-committed to co-invest in any and all Endeavor Entrepreneur led businesses raising $5 million in equity or greater with a lead institutional investor. Thus, Endeavor is always aligned with the Entrepreneur to support them as they grow.
The Power of the Few
What is the net result of all of this? The multiplier effect. As these companies scale, their collective impact exponentially grows. They are driving job creation, value creation, and, most importantly, they have an ever-growing capacity to give back. They are reinvesting in their home markets and the next generation of entrepreneurs.
We are very proud that 100% of the Endeavor Entrepreneurs from our market are giving back, not just financially, but also with their time. They are sharing their lessons learned and mentoring new entrepreneurs, even as they continue to scale and grow their enterprises. By paying it forward, this activity begins to build and create dense and thriving entrepreneurial ecosystems where little existed before.
We are bound by nothing and as we reflect on the past, we envision the future. Our vision for future impact is big and unbound; Endeavor Entrepreneurs are scaling up, going big, and giving back!
Enjoy our ‘Impact Report: Volume I’. It marks only the beginning.
Job creation, wealth creation, inspiration! Endeavor.
– Jackson M. Andrews, Managing Director