Are there any Eastside entrepreneurs out there who have the next big idea, but don’t know how to begin? Startup 425 Foundations is here to help. The organization is offering a series of free workshops for people who want to develop their business ideas.

“Startup 425 Foundations is held in the spring and in the fall in each of the five largest Eastside cities (Bellevue, Kirkland, Issaquah, Redmond, and Renton), and is focused on early-stage entrepreneurs,” said Jesse Canedo, program manager for Startup 425.

The workshop’s mission is to connect experts with fresh innovators and give them the knowledge and skills they need to turn their ideas into realities.

The workshop topics are:

  • Ideation
  • Business Licensing
  • Business Plans
  • Financing
  • Marketing
  • Networking & Mentoring

In 2017, the first year in which the workshops were held, Startup 425 served over 150 Eastsiders at 16 workshops. Nearly two-thirds identified as people of color, and over 60 percent of participants identified as women.

Startup 425 is a partnership of Bellevue, Redmond, Kirkland, Issaquah, and Renton, and receives support from the Port of Seattle and the King County Library System. Greater Seattle SCORE provides speakers for the workshops.

“The Bellevue sessions for Foundations are halfway over, but there will be other sessions around the Eastside until June,” Canedo said. Check out Startup 425’s calendar for more details.

Canedo also mentioned other workshops by Startup 425 including Export 101, a series of workshops focused on exploring and expanding to international markets. Export 101 will be held at Bellevue City Hall in late April and early May and is a partnership between Startup 425 and the Trade Development Alliance of Greater Seattle.

Startup 425 is also developing a series focused on small business finance, which will be held over the summer. More details on that workshop will be available soon.