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Entrepreneurs & Startups

Empowering Youth through Financial Literacy and Technology

In this episode of The Bentonville Beacon, host James Bell sits down with Somya Munjal, Founder and CEO of Youthful Savings, a tech-powered, learning ecosystem dedicated to socioeconomic empowerment through youth. Youthful Savings’ ecosystem consists of The Learning Marketplace (TLM), the Youthful Savings Marketplace (YSM) and the Youthful Savings Foundation (YSF). Through Youthful Savings educational products, youth are inspired to become heart-intelligent world citizens supporting mental well-being, economic empowerment and community development.

The Learning Marketplace is an innovative learning platform featuring revolutionary, downloadable learning exercises that include various topics such as entrepreneurship, personal finance, technology, Bitcoin and NFTs, art, vertical farming and artificial intelligence. Additionally, the Youthful Savings Marketplace aims to disrupt the growing wealth gap through the power of entrepreneurship and education. Lastly, the Youthful Savings Foundation provides engaged learners monthly capital through its Community Investment Fund (CIF), effectively reducing the bias in capital raising and providing equal opportunities for all.

Throughout the episode, Somya elaborates on Youthful Savings’ philosophy that if all youth receive the proper education and initial investment, they can create businesses that economically empower themselves and their communities. She also shares Youthful Savings’ positive impact on communities and some exciting announcements regarding Bentonville and Northwest Arkansas.

2024 Fuel for Your Health Accelerator Part 3

Discover how health tech companies are reshaping the future of medicine from Bentonville. In this special three-part series of The Bentonville Beacon, host James Bell meets with cohort members of this year’s Fuel for Your Health Accelerator. James kicks off the episode with Grace Gill, Fuel’s Operations Manager, who shares how this accelerator matches scalable health tech startups with key enterprise partners to expedite the adoption of their transformative medical technologies. Different from other programs, during each Fuel accelerator, high-growth startups from around the world benefit from programming and support focused on developing operational value and selling to large customers, rather than just venture capital coaching.

This episode highlights several of Fuel’s current cohort members and innovators, including TapRoot Interventions & Solutions Founder and CEO, Scarlett Spring, and Chief Clinical Officer, Dr. Linda Buscemi; Dart Health’s Founder and CEO, Brian Sage; and SOAP Health’s Founder and CEO, Dr. Steven Charlap.

Phoenix, Arizona-based TapRoot Interventions & Solutions is a woman-owned technology company at the intersection of artificial intelligence (AI), dementia care and behavioral healthcare. With its revolutionary AI-powered digital platform, Ella, TapRoot is helping organizations and caregivers to improve care for those living with dementia through a person-centered approach.

Denver, Colorado-based Dart Heath is reducing the cost of serving group healthcare by fixing the fundamentally broken exchange of data between group benefit providers and self-insured employers. Dart Health compiles disparate data sources from employers, providers, benefits administrators and claims, to portray a real individual with medical needs, effectively creating a single, secure, HIPAA-compliant, 350-degree view of a healthcare customer.

Boca Raton, Florida-based SOAP Health offers the ideal medical AI assistant. SOAP Health enhances and integrates patient intake and note creation to significantly reduce time of documentation and symptom assessment, appreciably increase average revenue and reduce malpractice exposure.

2024 Fuel for Your Health Accelerator Part 2

In this special three-part series of The Bentonville Beacon, host James Bell meets with cohort members of this year’s Fuel for Your Health Accelerator, a program that matches scalable health tech startups with enterprise partners to expedite the adoption of transformative medical technologies. James kicks off the episode with Tom Douglass, Fuel’s Entrepreneur in Residence, and is then joined by Rand Ragusa, Co-Founder of QuickTake Health; Erin Keyes, Co-Founder and CEO at Telegenixx; Dr. Bechara Saab, CEO and Chief Scientist with Mobio Interactive; and Natalie Shew, Founder and CEO from EmployWell.

New Orleans, Louisiana-based QuickTake Health provides innovative vital sign workflow automation and patient engagement kiosk solutions, revolutionizing the way healthcare facilities manage patient intake documentation and interactions. Dedicated to improving healthcare outcomes and enhancing patient experiences through innovative solutions, QuickTake’s intuitive interface allows patients to easily download their content to their phone and engage with personalized health resources, empowering them to take an active role in their own well-being.

New York-based Telegenixx is a digital health marketplace that unifies regenerative health physicians, laboratories, pharmacies and patients into one central platform focused on accessibility, affordability and easy-to-follow care plans. Through a tiered, all-inclusive subscription model, Telegenixx offers patients affordable access to elite physicians specifically trained in cutting edge peptide- and hormone-based protocols.

Singapore-based Mobio Interactive addresses the increased demand for mental healthcare globally with its commercialized AI digital diagnostic and psychotherapy platform. The platform serves as a stopgap for patients on waitlists for healthcare services, and contains convenient, scalable and remote monitoring tools that facilitate clinical decisions and the personalization of therapy according to real-time measures.

Lastly, Fayetteville, Arkansas-based EmployWell helps nurses work smarter not harder with its clinic workflow, Provider Ally, which is an AI-powered assistant that maps clinic workflows and automates nurse admin tasks for better work satisfaction and productivity. By automating administrative tasks and streamlining care team efficiency, nurses are able to voice and solve their top challenges and free up their time to focus on more direct patient care.

2024 Fuel for Your Health Accelerator Part 1

In this special three-part series of The Bentonville Beacon, host James Bell meets with cohort members of this year’s Fuel for Your Health Accelerator. James kicks off the episode with Fuel’s Director, Darian Harris, who shares how this accelerator matches scalable health tech startups with key enterprise partners to expedite the adoption of their transformative medical technologies. Different from other programs, during each Fuel accelerator, high-growth startups from around the world benefit from programming and support focused on developing operational value and selling to large customers, rather than just venture capital coaching.

This episode highlights several of Fuel’s current cohort members and innovators, including Tyler Zanon, CEO of EndoShunt Medical; Beth Gall, Vice President of Sales with Rainfall Health; and Andy Olson, Co-Founder and CEO at Inherent Biosciences.

Chicago, Illinois-based EndoShunt Medical offers an innovative medical device used for targeted hemorrhage control in emergency situations. With a vision of ending preventable abdominal hemorrhage death and improving patient outcomes, EndoShunt’s goal is to give trauma surgeons the gift of time so they can give trauma patients the gift of life. The device is a novel endovascular delivery system that allows surgeons to place a temporary length adjustable shunt within the major abdominal vessels, effectively controlling hemorrhaging from an injury while maintaining blood flow to the rest of the body.

Berkley, California-based Rainfall Health was established to help bridge the gap in providing access to quality healthcare in medical deserts by breaking down barriers to healthcare and ensuring patients receive the comprehensive care they deserve. Rainfall Health is a partner to health systems, healthcare plans and government organizations, where its platform enables streamlined clinical care, in-depth health analysis, patient care coordination and rural care with the help of artificial intelligence (AI). For patients, it provides quick scheduling, easy discovery of in-network providers plus immediate access to provider ratings.

Salt Lake City, Utah-based Inherent Biosciences is a team of molecular biologists, data scientists, healthcare providers and entrepreneurs at the intersection of epigenetics and AI. They are working together to create new clinical solutions to address complex healthcare concerns. Through the use of its platform, Inherent Biosciences detects dysregulation across multiple genes and related pathways to pioneer a new category of diagnostics and therapeutics, radically transforming how healthcare providers diagnose and treat complex diseases like infertility.

Angels in the Heartland

In this episode of The Bentonville Beacon, host James Bell sits down with Canem Arkan and Quinn Roberston from Endeavor, where Canem serves as Managing Director for Endeavor Heartland and Quinn is Director of the 412 Angels Program. Endeavor is the leading, global community of, by, and for high-impact entrepreneurs. It is on a mission to build thriving entrepreneurial ecosystems in emerging and underserved markets around the world. With the belief that high-impact entrepreneurs transform economies, Endeavor creates a multiplier effect by inspiring high-growth founders to dream bigger, scale faster and pay it forward, effectively compounding their individual impact.

Endeavor was established with the idea that entrepreneurship can thrive anywhere if given the right resources to grow, resulting in its global footprint spanning over 900 companies in more than 42 growth markets across Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, the United States and Canada. Endeavor’s portfolio companies have created more than 4 million jobs and generated over 24 billion dollars in revenue. In 2024, Endeavor Heartland took responsibility for 412 Angels, an investor network and program created to educate and grow the level of angel investing in the super region along the U.S. Highway 412 corridor from Tulsa, Oklahoma, through Northwest Arkansas.

Throughout this episode, Canem and Quinn expand on Endeavor’s approach to supporting scale-stage entrepreneurs and startups, and they share their views on how Bentonville and Northwest Arkansas’s thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem has evolved. They also discuss 412 Angels’ investment thesis and how they are increasing the number of local angel investors through the platform.

A Fresh Twist on Barbecue

In this episode of The Bentonville Beacon, host James Bell sits down with Ravi Dadi, Co-Founder of Beach BBQ, which has proven to be a vibrant addition to Bentonville’s culinary scene and is known for its fresh, innovative approach to barbecue. With a rich background in his prior role in information technology at Walmart, Ravi brings a unique blend of corporate savvy and entrepreneurial spirit to the table, where he and his team are transforming the traditional BBQ experience with flavors that surprise and delight. Throughout the episode, Ravi shares how Beach BBQ’s carefully crafted menu amplifies the customer experience and how the Greater Bentonville Area has bolstered Beach BBQ by enthusiastically welcoming the restaurant to its award-winning culinary landscape.

Catalyzing Community Development & Impact Investing

In this episode of The Bentonville Beacon, host James Bell chats with Ramsay Ball, Founder of Grey Space Collective, a nonprofit organization based in Bentonville that focuses on community development. Through Grey Space, Ramsay and his team focus on real estate, ventures, hospitality and nonprofits to catalyze community development and impact investing. Throughout the conversation, he shares how cultures, colors and companies blend together to form new relationships, accelerate entrepreneurship and create more good for our community and people. And it is by seeding opportunities for more music, food and art, that Grey Space does its part to do more good, which results in a virtuous cycle of doing more good for the Greater Bentonville area.

Bentonville’s Dining Revolution: Japan’s Culinary Art + Northwest Arkansas’s Ingredients

In this episode of The Bentonville Beacon, host James Bell sits down with return guest Phil Libin, a renowned serial entrepreneur known for his transformative ventures such as Evernote, All Turtles, mmhmm and now, Bentoville. Bentoville is a new concept that promises to revolutionize the dining experience in the Greater Bentonville Area by combining Japan’s culinary art with vibrant, local food culture from Northwest Arkansas. Throughout the conversation, Phil shares his insights on entrepreneurship, outlines his journey from the San Francisco tech scene to Northwest Arkansas and delves into the virtuous cycle and connection of quality of life and quality of work, while shedding light on the philosophy behind Bentoville.

Brewing Community: A Journey Into Coffee and Culture

In this episode of The Bentonville Beacon, host James Bell is joined by Brooke Bierhaus Sutton, Co-Founder and Owner of Third Space Coffee, a beloved coffee haven nestled inside Best Friends Pet Resource Center Northwest Arkansas in Bentonville. As an award-winning documentary filmmaker, Brooke’s work has appeared in National Geographic, PBS, NBC Sports, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, ABC Australia and more. Brooke’s curiosity and passion for cultural experiences led her to embrace the study of food anthropology and delve into the world of coffee, exploring the rich histories and communal aspects hidden in every cup. With the belief that sharing moments over coffee can create a lasting impact and break down barriers, Brooke shares about the founding of Third Space Coffee, why its menu is as intentional as the space it occupies and how it’s fostering a community hub on the ancestral lands of the Quapaw, Caddo and Osage, in the heart of Bentonville, where connections are forged, ideas are exchanged and dreams are nurtured.

Yeyo’s Next Chapter: Farm Fresh to Culinary Ventures

In this installment of The Bentonville Beacon, James Bell hosts Chef Rafael Rios, Founder and CEO of Yeyo’s. Yeyo’s stands out as a celebrated culinary enterprise in Bentonville and Northwest Arkansas, acclaimed for its authentic Mexican cuisine and dedication to sustainable farming practices. This journey began with the Rios Family Farm and one of Bentonville’s first food trucks, eventually expanding into multiple venues, including a restaurant in Bentonville’s 8th Street Market and a mezcaleria in downtown Rogers. Yeyo’s is distinguished by its farm-to-table approach, using fresh ingredients from the family’s farms to craft flavorful and traditional Mexican dishes. Chef Rios has been recognized as a multi-time James Beard Semifinalist, underscoring Yeyo’s exceptional culinary quality and innovation. This prestigious acknowledgment places Yeyo’s among America’s top culinary experiences, highlighting its commitment to excellence and deep-rooted passion for Mexican food culture. During the discussion, Rafael shares how his familial heritage has shaped Yeyo’s approach to cuisine, how he blends his roots with the local culture and how Yeyo’s remains true to its farm-to-table philosophy while providing distinct experiences at each of its establishments.