Q: What is KEC and how does it work? What resources do you provide?

We exist to help people with ideas become people with companies and increase the viability of early stage companies in Knoxville and East Tennessee by connecting them with the resources they need, from mentorship to capital.

KEC’s physical space and ongoing events provide a collaborative environment for entrepreneurship, networking, and collaboration to take place.

Q: I have an idea for the next great _____, what do I do next?

Come talk to us! There’s a lot to think about when exploring your next business venture, let us guide you through the process. Attend a LiftOff session or send us a message. We look forward to hearing from you soon!

Q: I don’t have a specific idea but I’ve got some talent that could be useful. Can I get involved?

Absolutely,If you’re a coder, designer, writer, strategist, attorney, MBA etc. we often have possibilities to join startup teams during our programs, and we have all sorts of interesting events for you to attend, network, and learn. We refer to you as our Technical Mentors. Tell us more about you here.

Q: Will you sign my NDA?

Short answer, no. Long answer, we help hundreds of companies every single year. If we started signing NDA’s, it would stop us from being able to help everyone that walked in the door. We won’t steal your ideas, most of us are too busy working on our own side businesses to even have time to consider starting a new one!

Q: Wait, you’re a non-profit? How are you funded?

Yes! We’re happy to say that we’re a 501c3 Non-Profit that is here to help the community kickstart new businesses. Our funders are 100% on-board with that mission. You can view all of our sponsors here.

Q: Are there any eligibility requirements?

Yes. You have to be an entrepreneur or be someone who is interested in and cares about supporting entrepreneurs.

Q: Can I come by KEC anytime to get help with my idea or do I need to set up an appointment/meeting?

We always welcome walk-ins, but will be able to serve you best if you set up an appointment by filling out this form.

Q: How can I stay current on what is happening at KEC?

Sign up here to get our mailing list (we usually communicate once a week) and follow us on our blog, Facebook and Twitter, or check our event calendar.

Q: How do I know which program is for me?

Go here! This page can help you get an idea of what the differences between the programs are and where you might fit in. You are also welcome to attend our public events where we can meet and chat about you, your idea, and what we can do to help you.