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Celebrating [email protected]: turnstone Launches Campaign to Recognize Startups in the U.S. Heartland

turnstone, a Steelcase brand, today announced a ten day, nine state road trip starting from its headquarters in Grand Rapids, MI, and ending at the largest gathering of startups in Austin, TX. The turnstone bus will make five stops along the way to recognize the important contributions made by startups in the U.S. Heartland, demonstrating the connection between great spaces, a vibrant culture and ultimately, highly successful companies. To do so, turnstone is introducing a contest that will give five small and emerging businesses – companies with less than 100 employees – a chance to win a $20,000 office makeover, helping to enhance the culture of the organization. The contest is part of a new turnstone campaign: [email protected] in the Heartland.

Fracture's new space courtesy of turnstone is both functional and aligns with the company's culture. ...

Fracture's new space courtesy of turnstone is both functional and aligns with the company's culture. (Photo: Business Wire)

"Space shapes behavior. The best small businesses create and work in spaces that authentically reflect their brand," said Kevin Kuske, chief anthropologist and general manager for turnstone. " Our '[email protected] in the Heartland' campaign is designed to showcase both great startups in Middle America and to help other entrepreneurs see the intimate connection between culture, space and business success."

Companies have until February 10, 2013 to submit their online applications at http://contest.turnstone.com. To enter, companies will be asked to submit photos, and answer a few short questions about culture at their business and explain how an office makeover would improve current cultural norms and help take their venture to the next level.

Over the course of ten days, members of the turnstone team will drive the turnstone bus to five cities, surprising one winning business in each metro area with an office makeover. The cities include, in order of visit, Chicago, IL (February 25th); Des Moines, IA (February 27th); Omaha, NE (February 28th); Kansas City, MO (March 1st); and Dallas, TX (March 4th).

The growth of the startup community in the Heartland is evidenced by the increasing number of investment dollars being poured into the region. According to a report commissioned by the Angel Resource Institute, Silicon Valley Bank and CB Insights, 5.7 percent of the country’s angel investment deals are done in the Great Plains and 13.6 percent in the Southwest. Both were the only regions to witness a rise in their share of investment from the first half of 2011 to the first half of 2012.

Winning a “sweet new office” can change company culture

Earlier this year, five businesses won a complete office renovation after entering the “Win a Sweet New Office!” contest from turnstone. The contest encouraged entrepreneurs from across the country to submit a short video demonstrating why a great workplace would make a difference.

Gainesville, FL-based startup, Fracture, which provides customers a unique and affordable way to print and frame personal digital photos on to glass, was one of the five winners. Spearheaded by turnstone designers and workspace experts, Fracture experienced a complete office overhaul that has since revitalized the workplace experience for the owners and employees. To view their before-and-after transformation, visit http://tv.myturnstone.com/QmtJ2/turnstone-customer-story-fracture/.

“Our goal with this renovation was to create a workspace that was comfortable, functional, collaborative, and full of positive vibes and energy,” said Matthew Bivens, Fracture director of marketing. “We now have a space with the look and feel that fits exactly with the culture of our company. More importantly, the makeover gave us a feeling that we are a legit business, a feeling that we are no longer a startup company scraping to get by.”

About turnstone

turnstone is a Steelcase Inc. brand inspired by the spirit of small business. The company designs solutions that help create great work environments that are easy to own and exhilarating to use. We provide ideas and attainable solutions that help our customers stay focused on what’s most important to them – their exciting journey through business and life. Running a small business is hard enough— having a great space to work in should be easy. For more information, visit www.myturnstone.com.

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