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Digital Sandbox KC provides early-stage proof-of-concept support for digital products.

Missouri Small Business & Technology Development Center provides technical assistance to startup and existing businesses.

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Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Centers helps local businesses obtain government contracts.

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SourceLink® helps communities nationwide build vibrant and vital entrepreneurial ecosystems.
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Nathan Holmes | Pumptrakr

A Cape Girardeau Area Farmer Created An App For His Farm and Turned It Into a Business

Nathan Holmes, was frustrated with managing irrigation for his Cape Girardeau farm. Did someone check the field? Did someone turn off that pump? He found himself checking and double-checking his team’s work, and knew there had to be a better, easier and more efficient way to manage water on his farm. He researched for an existing solution or product, but couldn’t find one. So, he collected his notes and data, dusted off his old coding textbooks, solved it himself—and ended up creating a new product and business. 

Pumptrakr is a platform that manages irrigation well pump locations, activity, fuel levels, maintenance concerns, and more, all in one convenient app. 

How Nathan Went from Irrigation Frustration to Automation App

Nathan knew a good idea needed strong resources to help it survive and thrive. So he tapped business-building resources in Missouri to help guide his idea toward commercialization.

His first stop was the Marquette Tech District Foundation in Cape Girardeau. Established to support Cape in becoming a booming downtown, many offices established to support the edification of Cape’s downtown call the district home including a co-working space and technology innovation lab. It was through Marquette Tech District that Nathan won the 1ST50K startup competition where he was awarded $50,000 toward Pumptrakr.

After winning, Nathan found hands-on support at Codefi, which provides startup entrepreneurs and emerging innovative companies with tech-powered, flexible enterprise space, while serving the area with innovative technology education programs and community. Codefi Labs helped him plan out his next steps and put them into action by further developing his software.

“Codefi is the engine that brought my idea into reality and made it marketable,” says Nathan. “I work really hard to do as much legwork as I can, and they're the professionals that make the app work. I rely heavily on their advice. They were and are a big help.”

After the tech side was under way, he then realized that the ins and outs of business, while familiar through his father’s venture, were still something he needed to work on. So when he needed help with tax information and know how? He the Network Navigators at MOSourceLink. 

“It was easy. I called, gave a phone number and email address and then the nice lady said, ‘By tomorrow we'll get you some information and some places to call in your area.’ And I said, ‘Terrific.’ Then that afternoon, before 4 p.m., I had an email with all the phone numbers in it and I was ready to go.”

Through reaching out to state resources, Nathan is going full speed with great support. Pumptrakr is scheduled to release in January 2020 and Nathan is already developing hardware to accompany the software. Watch the video above to hear more about his story and passion for bringing innovative solutions to farmers across the country.

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