Arkansas Startups: From Dirt Roads to Interstates - Innovate Arkansas
Arkansas Startups: From Dirt Roads to Interstates
By Mark Carter, 12/3/2012 12:00:00 AM
From an entrepreneurial dirt road to an interstate — that's how Movista co-founders April Seggebruch and Stan Zylowski describe the emerging startup culture in northwest Arkansas.
The two UA Walton College MBA grads founded Movista in 2010 as Merchant View and have grown their retail tracking firm to the cusp of startup stardom. Earlier this year, Movista signed its first national client, Tempur-Pedic, the mattress makers.
Seggebruch said the environment for growing a business in Arkansas, specifically northwest Arkansas, is booming. She cited the creation of Gravity Ventures' Arkansas Fund and the success of the recent ARK Challenge business incubator that brought startups from the state, country and beyond to Fayetteville.
Things have changed a lot, even since Seggebruch and Zylowski hatched their idea for what would become Movista in a Walton College classroom almost three years ago.
"We love to joke that we grew up on the entrepreneurial dirt road and northwest Arkansas folks are now born on the interstate," Seggebruch said. "The ARK, Gravity and, for the most part, Innovate Arkansas have grown up along with us. We are terribly proud of all the work these folks are doing and try very hard to give back when we can."
The 2016 Youth Entrepreur Showcase brought together the top 25 student teams, representing students in grades 5-8, for the competition's Expo Day. More than 200 teams submitted business plans for the competition and the top 25 were brought to Little Rock.
LineGuard Med, the medical device startup from Little Rock entrepreneur Spencer Jones, has added Vance Clement of Fayetteville's BlueInGreen as its chief operating officer, the company announced.
The Arkansas Research Alliance has named Sonja Hubbard, president and CEO of Texarkana's E-Z Mart Stores Inc., chairman of its board of directors and added four new board members.
A recent item in the Washington Post about driver retention in the trucking industry mentioned several Arkansas sources.