McKelvey Seeks To Spur St. Louis Economy With Technology

Jim McKelvey, Square co-founder | Photo courtesy of Cultivation Capital
Jim McKelvey | Photo courtesy of Cultivation Capital

Jim McKelvey, the St. Louis entrepreneur best know as the co-founder of payments startup Square, believes he’s cracked the code to propel St. Louis to greater economic achievement.

After launching an accelerator program, SixThirty, to help grow St. Louis’ financial services industry last month, McKelvey will be starting another project, called LaunchCode, that pairs local coders with engineers at 100 St. Louis-area companies. McKelvey is leading the development of LaunchCode to foster the growth of coders in St. Louis and make the region a hotbed of tech talent. It will begin the pairing process on Monday.

The business community’s response to LaunchCode has been “phenomenal,” McKelvey said. All companies that he has reached out so far have signed up to provide engineers as trainers.

“We go from a talent deficit, to talent neutral to a talent surplus within two years,” McKelvey said of LaunchCode’s potential impact on St. Louis.

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