I caught up with Scott Cassety of Launch NY to tell me a bit about the organization and its Entrepreneur in Residence program, and discusses Buffalo ‘s growing startup community.
Tell me a bit about your background.
I am a serial entrepreneur that has been involved with business from my teenage years till today. I started in programs such as Junior Achievement, went to college as an engineer, and from there built several businesses over 25 years that have all exited or failed. I am involved in angel investing, real estate and trying to help a new generation of entrepreneurs by mentoring and coaching with Launch NY. Both my wife and I currently work with several startup businesses providing them with tools and techniques that will help establish and develop their companies.
What is Launch NY?
Launch NY is a nonprofit venture development organization. Our mission is to identify, support and invest in high-growth, high-impact companies and catalyze the entrepreneurial culture of Upstate New York through regional collaboration with ecosystem partners.
What does an Entrepreneur in Residence do?
Entrepreneurs in Residence work with entrepreneurs providing referrals to resources, mentoring and education through past experiences, and offer opportunities to direct contacts. In addition, they search out, discover and work with service providers to find the best available solutions for working with startups in a collaborative manner.
What excites you about Buffalo’s entrepreneurial/startup scene?
The growth and activity that we have experienced in such a short period. Where we once saw individuals looking for a company to be employed by, we now see people looking at how to implement ideas and start their own company, as well as determine their own future. For over 100 years we have complained of what could have been when the city was great, and now we are seeing the potential once again with new ideas, innovation and true entrepreneurs willing to take risk and grow an ecosystem as opposed to just living off it.