Free program developed by the Kauffman Foundation helps build startup communities nationwide

PHILADELPHIA — Philadelphia soon will be the newest home of a national program to engage, educate and connect local entrepreneurs. Founded by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, 1 Million Cups is based on the notion that entrepreneurs connect and discover solutions over a million cups of coffee. The free, monthly gathering in Philadelphia helps build startup communities on a grassroots level.

Beginning May 23, entrepreneurs, innovators, funders and other interested community members are invited to attend the event on the third Wednesday of each month from 9 to 10 a.m. at rotating locations. The kickoff gathering will take place at Saxbys Headquarters, 2300 Chestnut Street #310.

The program’s model is consistent in each city: On Wednesday mornings, two early-stage startups present their companies to an audience of mentors, advisers and other entrepreneurs. Each founder presents for six minutes, followed by a 20-minute question-and-answer session with the audience.

In each 1 Million Cups city, local entrepreneurs drive the program as community organizers. Volunteering for the leadership roles in Philadelphia are:

  • Chantelle Bateman, Southbox;
  • Francisco Garcia, City of Philadelphia;
  • Abe Kwon, Cooley LLP;
  • Dawn McDougall. PromptWorks;
  • Heather Qader, City of Philadelphia;
  • Julia Reusch, Comcast;
  • Emely Roman, The Digital Owls;
  • Chuck Sacco, Drexel University;
  • Hardik Savalia, PromptWorks;
  • Kiera Smalls, Philly Startup Leaders

“We are thrilled to join this group of more than 175 other 1 Million Cups communities across the country,” said Francisco Garcia, Director of Business Development: Innovation & Technology for the City of Philadelphia. “This is an excellent opportunity to connect Philadelphia entrepreneurs to each other, get them in front of potential funders, and expose their companies to a larger audience through the 1Million Cups network.”

To learn more about 1 Million Cups, view the national website at Entrepreneurs are encouraged to apply using the Philadelphia microsite at


About the Kauffman Foundation

The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation is a private, nonpartisan foundation that works together with communities in education and entrepreneurship to create uncommon solutions and empower people to shape their futures and be successful. The Kauffman Foundation is based in Kansas City, Missouri, and uses its $2 billion in assets to collaboratively help people be self-sufficient, productive citizens. For more information, visit and connect with us at and

About Saxbys

Founded in 2005 by Nick Bayer, Saxbys is more than just coffee (though it is pretty good). Each cafe is an uplifting environment filled with friendly faces, delicious drinks and exceptional food to fuel the day’s possibilities. With a core mission to “Make Life Better,” Saxbys brews real change in the communities it serves, while nurturing the entrepreneurial spirit in team members who aspire to be make an impactful difference. In 2015, Saxbys launched its pioneering Experiential Learning Program to introduce exclusively student-run cafes to university campuses, complementing classroom learning with tangible experiences. Currently, five Experiential Learning Program locations exist across four campuses with partners including Drexel University, Millersville University, Temple University, and La Salle University. Get to know Saxbys by visiting or joining us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.