The Midwest region is a relatively untapped well of lucrative startups and forward-thinking entrepreneurs. In particular, Indianapolis is a picture of Midwestern innovation. Not only is it home to legacy companies like Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, Finish Line, and Eli Lilly and Company, it’s also a breeding ground for cutting-edge tech companies, marketing technology, agriculture innovation, and more. The city’s central location (Indiana is known as the “Crossroads of America”), strong entrepreneurial ecosystem, and affordable, accessible resources makes it appealing to both founders and investors.

“Indianapolis has a very vibrant set of generational entrepreneurs giving back by mentoring and investing in emerging startup companies,” said Ryan Ziegler, partner at east coast growth equity firm Edison Partners, to Crunchbase. “The city has one of the top five lowest rent-to-tech wage ratios. It’s a place where you can build company capital efficiently. All these factors make for pretty interesting ingredients to build great companies, particular B2B tech companies.” 

Edison Partners isn’t the only firm taking notice of the city. As Indiana Business Journal reports, more than 40 Indiana tech companies have been acquired in the last decade. In 2018 alone, 16 Indiana tech companies sold—13 of which were headquartered in the Indianapolis area. 

Unsurprisingly, Indiana’s tech scene has also made national headlines. Inc. named Indianapolis to their 2017 list of the “Top 6 Best Cities to Start a Business Right Now,” while Fast Company ranked Indianapolis among the “Next Top 10 Cities for Tech Jobs” in 2015. The publication also included the Indiana capital on their list of the best cities for women in tech in 2018. 

It goes without saying that innovative Indiana companies are on our radar as well. Below, read up on the five Indiana companies we’re watching in 2019 and beyond. 

Emplify. 

Headquarters: Fishers, Indiana.

This employee engagement measurement software company is a data-driven business with a lot of heart. CEO Santiago Jaramillo and team have helped countless business executives make informed, data-driven HR decisions for their companies, creating better, more engaged workplaces in the process. “The human work experience is a powerful lever for change,” said Jaramillo of his company. “Our employees and the companies that make up our ecosystem of customers and partners are proving that we have the potential to positively change the human experience through more engaging work.” Learn more over on the Emplify website

PERQ Marketing. 

Headquarters: Indianapolis, Indiana. 

No list of forward-thinking Indiana companies is complete without PERQ. Founded in 2001 by Andy Medley and Scott Hill, PERQ’s digital marketing and sales solutions are now used by over 1,000 businesses across the United States. Their interactive software enables businesses of all sizes to turn casual web browsers into loyal customers through the use of product fit quizzes, payment calculators, special offer reveals, appointment setups, and more. PERQ has been the recipient of countless awards, including the B2B Innovator Award, IndyStar’s Top Workplaces 2018 Award, Ventana Research’s Digital Innovation Award, and more. Most recently, PERQ closed a $6 million Series A funding round led by Endeavor mentor John Willmoth’s company, Poplar Ventures. Learn more on the PERQ website.

PactSafe. 

Headquarters: Indianapolis, Indiana.  

PactSafe acceptance platform offers a modern take on contracting. By securely powering clickwrap agreements that scale with their business, customers like Upwork, Angie’s List, BMC Software, Outbrain, Doordash, and Wayfair can improve customer service while protecting themselves from legal issues before they arise. PactSafe has raised approximately $7.7 million in funding to date, and has been featured in Venture Beat, Tech Point, Xconomy, Inside Indiana Business, Forbes, Reuters, and more. 

Canvas.

Headquarters: Indianapolis, Indiana. 

Indianapolis is home to the world’s first text-based interviewing platform. Founded in 2017 by Aman Brar, Canvas has revolutionized the recruiting industry by enabling recruiters to “better reach today’s growing millennial talent generation,” reads their website. By shifting the conversation to candidates’ preferred method of communication, HR professionals can screen candidates, maintain relationships, schedule interviews, and share brand-building company content and resources via text. Canvas was acquired by California-based Jobvite in February 2019. Brar is now CEO of Jobvite as well as Canvas, but plans to continue growing both companies in Indianapolis.

Anvl.

Headquarters: Fishers, Indiana. 

Frontline worker safety software company Anvl is actually the brainchild of Scott Dorsey’s venture studio High Alpha and Columbus-based Cummins Inc. “The idea for Anvl was originally brought to High Alpha by Cummins Inc. as a unique opportunity to enhance the safety processes within their organization,” said High Alpha partner Mike Fitzgerald to Inside Indiana Business. “After bringing on Cummins as our first pilot customer, we are thrilled to…watch Anvl continue to ensure the safety of front-line workers across the world.” Anvl, which officially launched in October 2018, is currently led by Robin Fleming, an innovator in Indiana’s tech scene and the former senior vice president of technology at Angie’s List. While Anvl is still in its early stages, it’s safe to say that the startup has a bright future.  

If you’re a high-impact entrepreneur and want to learn more about the Endeavor network, reach out to us via our application page. We’d love to hear from you!