Arch Grants Awards $200k in Growth Grants to Two Startups
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Provider Pool and GiftaMeal win $100k cash boost to make hires in St. Louis.
On Tuesday, May 25, Arch Grants announced that it has awarded $200,000 in Growth Grants to two of its portfolio companies, marking the official launch of the Growth Grants program. The organization plans to award an additional $200,000 – $300,000 in Growth Grants again in the Fall of 2021.
The first two Arch Grants Companies to receive $100,000 Growth Grants are Provider Pool and GiftaMeal. Both Companies are currently raising seed funding to grow and scale their companies in St. Louis, and Arch Grants’ non-dilutive Growth Grants will be able to be leveraged to outside investors as part of the funding round.
Provider Pool, a 2019 Arch Grants Recipient company founded by Janna Westbrook is a software solution powering the next generation of Registered Nurses through a career-building marketplace focused on collaboration and inclusivity. Provider Pool is solving the nursing shortage by enabling overlooked healthcare workers (Home health aides, Nurse Assistants, Practical Nurses) to upskill or enroll in higher education by decreasing barriers to success and increasing retention rates.
In a press release from Arch Grants, Janna Westbrook, CEO explained, “We are on a mission to ensure the diversity within the healthcare workforce directly mirrors the diversity of the patient population we care for each day.”
GiftAMeal, a 2018 Arch Grants Company, founded by Andrew Glantz is a marketing platform for restaurant owners that boosts customer engagement on social media through a social entrepreneurship and “giving back” program. Each time a customer takes a photo of their order, GiftAMeal makes a donation to a local food bank to help provide a meal to a neighbor in need.
Restaurants pay a monthly subscription to be on the GiftAMeal mobile app, and have seen an over 5x ROI. 250+ restaurants and 40,000 app users are involved, with over 600,000 meals have been provided so far. “Our 2018 Arch Grant allowed us to bring a top-tier CTO on our team and really move beyond the minimum viable product stage,” said, Glantz.
“Now, we are preparing to scale and this Growth Grant will fuel our ability to explore multiple channels for growth as we become a national company based in St. Louis. This is definitely the place to be for entrepreneurs who are looking for early stage support, capital, key introductions, low cost of living, top talent, and an enjoyable place to live and work.”
New Growth Grants Planned in Fall 2021
Arch Grants intends to award between $400,000 – $500,000 total through the Growth Grants program in 2021.
The Growth Grants program was developed to provide follow-on funding to help Arch Grants companies that have had early success to hire talent and scale in St. Louis. Any Arch Grants Company that is still operating in St. Louis is eligible to apply, and if awarded, must commit to remaining in St. Louis for at least two years.
Growth Grants funds are non-dilutive but must be matched at least 2 to 1 by outside funds – equity investments, other grants and/or convertible notes. Applicants are evaluated by an external panel of 15-25 volunteer judges with a wide breadth of expertise.
Companies are eligible to apply twice a year, in the Spring and Fall but each Arch Grants Company is only eligible to receive one Growth Grant.