To the St. Louis innovation community,
After nine remarkable years of activating the innovation ecosystem in St. Louis, Venture Café St. Louis bids farewell to its current format at the end of December. This decision comes at a time of change in the market where the needs of our innovation community are evolving.
Nine years driving the local innovation community
As this era comes to an end, we would be remiss not to celebrate the impact we’ve had. Since 2014, Venture Café St. Louis has acted as a beacon for purpose driven individuals and organizations wanting to; collaborate on world leading research, discover the latest technology and to build new ventures together.
At this time we reflect on you, the individuals who made this journey so special – one where countless friendships, partnerships, startups and ideas were formed along the way.
We can proudly say that Venture Café St. Louis has been a driving force in building the local innovation ecosystem. Just some ways include:
- Hosting 463 Thursday Gatherings
- Facilitating more than 399,000 connections for more than 133,000 attendees
- Creating more than 2,300 sessions platforming over 2,500 diverse speakers
- Delivering over 600 1:1 expert office hours advisory sessions
- Achieving a record high in-person Thursday Gathering attendance of 951 attendees at a single gathering
- Helping lead the post-pandemic recovery, bringing together 486 speakers across 438 sessions since 2022
- Launching and operating EdHub STL, an equity-program supporting educators and entrepreneurs to apply innovation to solve systemic challenges in the education sector, particularly those serving underrepresented communities
- Becoming the first expansion site for Venture Café beyond Cambridge, laying the foundation for the Venture Café Global Institute which today operates in 15 cities around the world
We are extremely grateful and appreciative of the hard-work and contributions made by staff both past and present, without whom these accomplishments would not have been possible.
Embracing Change and Looking Ahead
As this era comes to an end, we reflect on the incredible impact Venture Café St. Louis has had on the community, and contemplate how best to support the future state of the innovation economy in St. Louis.
Both Venture Café and CIC remain committed to supporting local innovation ecosystems. In the near term, CIC St. Louis will be working closely with local partners to create engaging and inspiring programming and experiences for the local community.
The final Thursday Gathering will be on December 14, where we will reflect on the profound impact Venture Café has had in St. Louis and look ahead with a sense of optimism.
In closing, we want to express our deep gratitude for the incredible journey we’ve embarked upon with you. We have truly shown that innovation is for everyone. Together, we’ve built and experienced something extraordinary, and as we bid adieu to this chapter, we look forward to the potential of a new beginning.
Click HERE to learn more about our Winter Soiree and our final Thursday Gathering