Supporter of Entrepreneurship
After college, Mark Crane accepted a job in PNC Bank’s information technology department and then his real education began.
Crane helped launch a technology company soon after starting at the bank. The electrical engineering graduate had no idea he would be wearing several hats for the developing company. Crane acted as product manager, vice president of marketing, publisher and deal-maker in the 11 years at the company.
One day, Crane’s mentor approached him to start an entrepreneurial economic development arm of Greater Louisville Inc., the metro chamber of commerce. Crane pounced at an opportunity to help other entrepreneurs in his community develop their ideas, so EnterpriseCorp was born. The company allows Crane to work with promising entrepreneurs at various stages of development: start-up, growth and mature industries. Crane’s responsibilities as executive director are to assess and meet the needs of each business in an effort to increase Louisville’s commerce. The wide skill range he picked up early in his career comes in handy, because each company Crane works with has unique needs.
His many experiences have allowed him to recognize the best way to serve each business. Crane organized five programs to help local business owners improve. One of these, Enterprise Angels, is a group of high net worth individuals who invest in early-stage companies. Crane also organized CEO round tables, where heads of companies meet once a month to learn better ways to run their company. The 12 highest-ranking companies receive recognition each year for excellence. Additionally, he co-manages an award program designed to give grant money to inventors and innovators to develop their ideas.
Crane and his team produce two publications, which detail where to find funding and what other entrepreneurs are working on. Each component of the company allows Crane to fulfill his five-year goal of making Louisville an entrepreneurial powerhouse.
How to reach: GLI’s EnterpriseCorp, (502) 625-0047 or www.enterprisecorp.com