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SUCCESS STORIES

MindCraft Makerspace

“An entrepreneur is someone who jumps off a cliff and builds a plane on the way down.” — Reid Hoffman

Entrepreneurs are passionate risk-takers who make an impact on our economy, and they‘ve made Colorado a top-five state for startup activity and for innovation.

Entrepreneurs know it takes a lot more than an idea to make a business come to life. Brenda Lane is co-founder of MindCraft Makerspace knows just that. Lane has poured herself into her businesses – a digital fabrication lab developed as a collaborative studio space for creative and inventive endeavors for makers of all ages – and entrepreneurialism has become her way life.

“As a maker, I owned my first business in my hometown at the age of 18. My uncle and I teamed up to open Lane’s House of Glass in Pueblo, where I spent eight years teaching stained glass, fusing and slumping,” Lane recalls.

MindCraft Makerspace is the second business devoted to educational endeavors for Lane and her business partner Adriana Santacoloma.

Lane first opened eXL Learning in 2011. She sought the advice of consultants at Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs across the Front Range. She coupled the consulting with the SBDC’s business planning course, Leading Edge.

“I rely on the SBDC to develop myself as a better business owner and operator, and I recommend this organization to anyone thinking of opening their own business,” Lane said.

Opening MindCraft Makerspace was a way for Lane to combine her passion for education and creativity. MindCraft Makerspace offers classes, workshops, equipment rental and memberships to learn about and use all tools, equipment and machinery accessible to the users – no matter the age.

“Our combination of labs, workshops and classrooms make it easy and fun for hands-on, ‘let’s make this’ kind of learning,” Lane said.

Their space is located in the newly restored Stanley Marketplace on the border of Aurora and Stapleton. The Marketplace houses over 50 independent companies under one roof.

Alt Ethos

You may have seen their installations during Denver Startup week or read their name in 303 Magazine as “Denver Artists to Watch in 2018.” Alt Ethos is introducing a new way of capturing the attention of audiences through experiential design. By combining mixed reality (MR), augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) to create interactive light displays, people are more than just viewers – they become part of the art display. CEO Ethan Bach and

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Wong Way Veg

When Lisa Wong stepped foot into the Denver Metro Small Business Development Center in 2011, her dream of starting a food truck in Denver was just that – a dream. Wong envisioned herself running a business that would marry her love for vegetarian food with her passion for building community. Two years later, her dream became a reality. But Wong’s dream didn’t come to life without hard work. In the fall of 2012, she enrolled

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Future Fit Foods

Future Fit Foods is a woman-and-minority-owned food startup out of Boulder, Colorado, bringing people diverse plant-based foods that prioritize the wellbeing and happiness of people and communities. They are also the winners of the 2021 Trout Tank CPG Pitch Event. Paloma Lopez, founder of Future Fit Foods realized the change people were making was incremental because the business models, brands, and products had not been designed with today’s sustainability and nutrition needs in mind. After

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Transform Energy

Transform Energy utilizes a market-based approach to end poverty and climate change, creating micro franchises to generate green coal, a clean coal replacement. Worldwide there are 1 billion people living on less than $3 a day in rural villages with very limited job prospects to improve their livelihood. They buy coal to use for cooking and heating which adds to environmental hazards. Transform Energy (TE) partners with local entrepreneurs to build simple kilns which they

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Stephen and co-founder stand surrounded by microgreens. Stephen smiles holding two microgreens products.
Beyond Microgreens

Beyond Microgreens was founded with a clear mission in mind: to connect people with powerful plants and fill nutritional gaps in their diet. Although founder Stephen Cowan spent 10 years in software sales selling enterprise solutions, he felt that there was more he could do for others. “My inspiration [for Beyond Microgreens] was a trip to the jungles of Peru,” Cowan said. There, he discovered the health and vitality of plants, and how connected the

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dance2b

Jennifer Tisdale learned early in her years as a consultant that creativity and business opportunity are imperative for a successful startup. Looking for a dance studio to express her own creative outlet, she explored the Denver region to see what dance studios existed and what they offered. The more she searched, the more she realized that a true business opportunity existed. Her idea? Start a boutique fitness studio that provided daily dance classes for adults.

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