Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Spotlight: Cheyenne, WY

Cheyenne, WY

Though Cheyenne, WY may bring images of a rugged frontier to mind, it is one of the state’s fastest-growing cities.

Cheyenne, WY, nicknamed the “Magic City of the Plains” in the 1800s due to its rapped expansion and growth, is the state’s current capital and largest city. Though the name and location may bring images of a rugged frontier to mind, it is one of the state’s fastest-growing cities and has developed a well-earned reputation as an entrepreneurial hotspot. A 2019 list of the best small cities for entrepreneurs published on Inc.com ranked Cheyenne 8th overall, while WalletHub ranked it 5th on its list of the best and worst small cities to start a business (with a ranking of second overall in the “Business Environment” category). Cheyenne also appeared on another 2019 WalletHub list: 47th overall on the site’s rankings of the best cities for Hispanic entrepreneurs.

Based on these rankings, FundingSage has reviewed the resources that make up Cheyenne’s entrepreneurial ecosystem:

Entrepreneurial Meetups:

The Cheyenne Business Network hosts monthly networking meetings at Domino’s Pizza to allow its members to meet one another, exchange business cards and grow their networks.

Cheyenne’s Holistic Health Professionals Network is a networking group that supports area businesses in the holistic health industry.

Hear Me Roar Toastmasters helps its members build important entrepreneurial skills such as leadership and communication.

Down the road from Cheyenne in Laramie, TechTalk events are held twice per month. They alternate between social networking events and presentations from experienced speakers.

 

Regular Entrepreneurial Events:

Just across the state border in Fort Collins, Colorado, a branch of 1 Million Cups meets every Wednesday morning to allow its members to present startups and network with each other.

The Greater Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce hosts a wide variety of regular events, ranging from networking opportunities, workshops and conferences.

The Wyoming Business Alliance, a statewide organization dedicated to supporting business, hosts regular events and meetings throughout the state, including in Cheyenne.

 

Startup Competitions:

The Wyoming Business Council runs a number of support programs for entrepreneurs in the state, including sponsoring startup competitions through Startup: Wyoming.

The University of Wyoming in Laramie hosts and sponsors several startup competitions taking place in a number of different cities throughout the state.

 

Co-working Spaces:

Located down the road in Laramie, The Durlacher offers co-working memberships and hosts a variety of regular community events.

The Majestic Building, located in the middle of downtown Cheyenne, forgoes traditional co-working and offers premium office space for rent.

The Second Floor at the Paramount is over 9,000 square feet co-working space, office suites and other rooms available for rent, all located in Cheyenne’s historic Paramount building.

 

Makerspaces:

Just across the state line, the Fort Collins Maker Hub is a 4,000 square foot makerspace full of tools and equipment that is available 24/7 to members.

The University of Wyoming has four makerspaces: the Coe Student Innovation Center, the Student Innovation Center, the ASU-IT 3D Print Center and the 4D Visual Art Fabrication Studio.

 

Incubators:

The Laramie County Library offers a variety of development resources to local businesses, including classes, one-on-one consultations and more through its Library to Business services.

The Wyoming Small Business Development Center network is an organization of centers dedicated to supporting small businesses throughout the state, including in Cheyenne.

The Wyoming Technology Business Center is an incubator program sponsored by the University of Wyoming that works to develop and support high-growth tech startups in the area.

 

Accelerators:

Hosted at the University of Wyoming, the Southeast Wyoming Innovation Launchpad works with promising entrepreneurs in Laramie and Albany Counties.

Across the border in Loveland, CO, The Warehouse is a business accelerator that works to support second-stage technology and manufacturing companies.

 

Colleges/Universities:

Across the border in Fort Collins, Colorado State University’s Institute for Entrepreneurship organizes a number of resources to support its students.

Laramie County Community College offers an associate of applied science in small business management as well as a credit diploma program in entrepreneurship.

Located down the road in Laramie, the University of Wyoming offers an impressive entrepreneurship program, including a degree program and a minor.

 

Angel Groups/VCs:

The Rocky Mountain Venture Capital Association is a group of venture capital companies that invest throughout the Rocky Mountains region, including Wyoming.

With locations in Laramie and the Czech Republic, Thermopolis Partners invests in promising startups that work with technology or natural resources.

The Wyoming Angels Network is a group of angel investors that work with promising early-stage technology startups throughout the Western US, specifically Wyoming.

 

Entrepreneurial Newsletter Coverage:

The newsletter offered by the Greater Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce covers local business news and press releases as well as upcoming chamber events.

Headquartered in Cheyenne, the Wyoming Business Council offers a newsletter covering the entire state that includes features on local businesses, upcoming events and more.

The Wyoming Business Report, a business journal for the state, offers daily email newsletters containing the region’s biggest news and headlines.

 

Are you familiar with an entrepreneurial ecosystem infrastructure in Cheyenne, WY not included in the article above?  If so, let us know via a comment below, and we will add it to the article. 

Interested in Ecosystem Spotlights of other cities in the USA?

Bismarck, ND, Minneapolis, MNLincoln, NE


Image courtesy of West Edge Collective via Cheyenne.org, all rights reserved.


Quinn Pilkey

Quinn is a journalism major at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. He also serves as a freelance author for Hashtag Basketball where he writes about the NBA's Charlotte Hornets and at Funding$age where he researches and writes about entrepreneurial ecosystems.