Good Works Ventures

We are a Montana based venture capital fund that invests in companies with high impact solutions to challenging problems.  While we love to invest in Montana companies, we will consider any company that is paradigm changing and has the potential for good financial return.  We invest in early  and mid stage companies that show promise in their technology, scalability and management.  We will consider loans, equity or hybrid instruments.  Take a look through our portfolio companies.  If you feel like your company should be among them, please be sure to contact us.  If you are an investor who is interested in co-investing along side us or you would like us to take a look at your portfolio companies, we are happy to engage in conversation.  We invite both entrepreneurs and investors to our monthly meetings of the Hellgate Venture Network.

We recognize the value of promoting entrepreneurship throughout Montana and as such and we are involved with a number of programs that work to catalyze entrepreneurship including: the Hellgate Venture Network, the Innovation Initiative program with the Missoula Economic Partnership, and Missoula's Startup Weekend. A calendar of events can be found on the Upcoming Events page. If you would like more information or to get involved with any of these projects please let us know.

Recent Posts

HVN: Thurs Aug 21 – Contractor Sherpa

Our next meeting will feature Contractor Sherpa’s Dustin Stewart and Robert Reum. Contractor Sherpa won Startup Weekend Missoula earlier this year and 6 months and over 50,000 lines of code later has just started registering contractors in Bozeman, Missoula and Helena. Public launch in those cities will be just after Labor Day.

We are excited to once again have our August Meeting at WGM’s offices overlooking the river (and its summertime float community). Many thanks to Brent Campbell and the WGM team!

1111 East Broadway, Missoula, MT

As always the meeting starts at 4.30pm.

Please let us know if you plan on attending.

See you there!

Dawn McGee and Paul Gladen

How to Pitch Your Idea Workshop June 26th

We are thrilled that Jeremy Sauter has agreed to run a “How to Pitch Your Idea” Workshop. This will give you the opportunity to apply the concepts and approaches Jeremy discussed at May’s HVN meeting.

The workshop will run from 4.30pm to approximately 6.30pm on Thursday Jun 26. The workshop will start with some introductory concepts and examples from Jeremy but then devote the majority of the workshop to small teams working on each others ideas and pitches and pitching back to Jeremy and the rest of the attendees.

The workshop will be held in the main conference room at MonTEC on East Broadway.

You can attend with an idea pitch that you want to develop or refine or simply attend and help others with their pitches while learning and applying the concepts.

There is no charge to attend but we do ask that unlike other HVN events you register via the link below.

Please contact Paul Gladen (406.396.3534) if you have any questions.

Staring the Pig in the Face

Good Works Ventures believes strongly in the ethos of the Slow Money movement and we are in the early stages of starting a Slow Money Chapter in Montana. If you are interested in being involved in Slow Money Montana please get in touch. For those of you unfamiliar with the Slow Money movement below is a transcript of the keynote address given by Woody Tasch, founder of Slow Money, at last year’s Slow Money conference.

Staring the Pig in the Face

Next HVN Meeting June 19th at Webfilings

Our next meeting will feature John Ruffatto Business Plan Competition winners New Leaf Environmental! Founder Matt Gangloff will talk about how they are working to bring environmental monitoring to the masses!

We are extremely grateful to long time HVN’er Lance Fisher, and WebFilings for hosting our meeting at their new Missoula Offices:

140 S 4th ST W Suite 2. (Corner of 4th and Myrtle across from Le Petit Outre. The entrance is actually on Myrtle.)

The fun starts at 4.30pm. As always please let us know if you plan on joining us.

We look forward to seeing you!

Dawn McGee and Paul Gladen

Startup 101 – Free Webinar from Startup Women Montana

Good Works Ventures’ own Dawn McGee will be participating in a webinar on startup basics Wednesday, May 28th from 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. The panel will be moderated by Diane Smith, CEO of American Rural, and will additionally include Liz Marchi of the Frontier Angel Fund, Sarah Calhoun of Red Ants Pants and director of the University of Montana LaunchPad/HVN Co-Founder Paul Gladen. If you’re interested in attending you can register at:

Relative Importance of Key Factors in Venture Capitalists’ Valuation of New Ventures:

A 2001 study by Hill and Power1 asked venture capitalists to rate a number of factors when valuating a deal (5 most important, 1 least). The results (below) may be something to consider when putting together business plans and investment pitches.

Key Factor Points
Quality of Management 4.5
Size of market 3.8
Product qualities 3.7
Rate of market growth 3.5
Competition 3.5
Barriers to entry 3.4
Company’s stage of development 3.2
Industry company is in 3.0

1Hill, B., and D. Power (2001). Inside Secrets to Venture Capital, John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Brown Bag Lunch – Motivating Your Employees and Influencing Colleagues

I will be attending the Innovation Initiative brown bag lunch tomorrow to hear Jennifer Smith talk about management issues. I have only heard amazing things about Jennifer and I’m very eager to learn how to manipulate…err influence my colleagues. From the announcement:

Do you want to learn how to better motivate your employees or to better influence your colleagues and clients?  Emotional intelligence — the ability to understand yourself and others — is critical for business success. Expert in using applied psychology in business operations, Jennifer Smith will introduce you to a system that will help you improve your emotional intelligence. Participants will gain practical information about the various motivations that people (including you!) may have and how to interact more effectively with them. Handouts with the relevant information as well as a list of further resources will be provided. After her opening presentation, Jen will facilitate a roundtable discussion and answer questions. Bring your lunch.

Cost: Free.

Professional background: Jennifer Smith is a consultant with expertise in developing people and organizations. She has worked in many areas of organizational development such as leadership development, career management, and change management for global organizations in the U.S. and U.K.  She is an adjunct instructor at The University of Montana and teaches courses on organizational behavior and leadership. In addition to her academic training and consultative experience, Jennifer has conducted postgraduate research in the area of work psychology.

Event: Brown Bag Lunch – Motivating Your Employees and Influencing Colleagues
Start: April 25, 2013 12:00 pm
End: April 25, 2013 1:00 pm
Category: Innovation Initiative
Presenter: Jennifer Smith, UM
Updated: January 21, 2013
Venue: MonTEC
1121 East Broadway, Missoula


The Missoula Economic Partnership is putting on an Innovation Initiative brown bag lunch seminar today, 4/18/2013, to discuss content marketing. Paul Gladen, the president of Muzeview Research and co-founder of The Hellgate Venture Network will be the speaker and it should be really interesting. From the announcement:

Content marketing is all the rage! But what is it, and how can businesses use it to generate leads, nurture those leads and generate new business. During this brown bag lunch Paul Gladen of Museview Research and Hellgate Venture Network will share a nine-step framework for content-led B2B marketing — and explore the pitfalls and best practices in making it work for your organization. After Paul’s opening presentation, he will facilitate a roundtable discussion and answer questions. Bring your own lunch.

Cost: Free.

Event: Brown Bag Lunch – B2B Content Marketing
Start: April 18, 2013 12:00 pm
End: April 18, 2013 1:00 pm
Category: Innovation Initiative
Presenter: Paul Gladen, Hellgate Venture Network
Updated: January 9, 2013
Venue: MonTEC
Address: 1121 East Broadway, Missoula

Next Hellgate Venture Meeting: April 18 – Alter Enterprise

Our next meeting will feature Alter Enterprise!

Alter Enterprise is skilled at developing new entrepreneurial opportunities and will share some of its specific successes and lessons learned in pursuing those opportunities. In its most recent initiative Alter Enterprise has teamed up with Christine Johnson to form EDGE (Experts Delivering Global Education), a mobile classroom, comprising a 700 sq.ft trailer containing interactive video conferencing equipment allowing presenters and teachers to present to classes of 30 students. EDGE is currently delivering classes to the Bakken Oil Field to capitalize on the boom.

Alter Enterprise will also talk about the who, what and where of being open to new ideas as well as the risk involved to explore and vet out those ideas.

Our meeting will be held at Alter Enterprises’ facility:

450 Colorado Ave
East Missoula

As always the fun starts at 4.30pm with networking.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Dawn McGee and Paul Gladen