The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local Business

February 9, 2013

Business Profile: Story of childhood obsession comes full-circle in Pendleton

Name of business: The Story Shop

Location: 121 W. State St., Pendleton

Owners: Luke Renner and David Neidert

Contact:; (317)669-9246;

Opened: Last year in the Flagship Enterprise Center, but recently moved to Pendleton

Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. New meetings by appointment only.

Employees: Renner, Neidert and in-house composer Phil Larson

Services: A full-service “creative storytelling” firm. It works with clients on projects including branding, videos, books, websites and music.

In the owners’ words: Luke Renner and David Neidert were born to tell stories.

As children, they say, both could be found “sneaking off with dad’s video camera, huddled in some corner writing, or figuring out way to weave illusions into reality.”

Now grown, Renner and Neidert have joined forces to open The Story Shop, a Pendleton-based “creative storytelling” firm that works with clients on branding, videos, books, websites, music and more.

Both Anderson University graduates, Renner and Neidert each spent the first decade or so of their professional careers working in broadcasting.

In addition to the Story Shop, Renner is also the founder of Fireside International, a prosocial non-profit that teaches storytelling as a catalyst for improving living conditions around the world.

Luke lived in Haiti for a few years while working with Fireside. After returning to the States, he approached Neidert about joining forces under the Story Shop banner.

“In a very real sense, The Story Shop was born from Fireside International,” Renner said. “Now, in a really magical turn of story, The Story Shop is able to provide office space and resources to Fireside International free of charge. It’s a really great example of how great people working together can make big things happen.”

The key difference, of course, is profit. The Story Shop’s services are professional and multitudinous — it works with clients on everything from branding to music.

“At present, The Story Shop is fully operational and is welcoming new clients while continuing to serve an impressive list of longstanding ones,” Renner said. He said the business is also in “the early stages of launching an exciting new local initiative to help in the development of Madison County and the State of Indiana.”

That initiative, Neidert said, aims to tell the stories of Madison County — its businesses, organizations and people.

“Any community’s self identity is largely built on the kinds of stories to which they have access,” he said. “Madison County is no different, and better access to the positive stories being written right here gives us the opportunity to better understand who we are as a community and culture. It allows us to define ourselves by our successes instead of solely by our challenges.”

He added, “The reality is that Madison County is home to world class innovation, great educational opportunities and story after story of personal triumph. This campaign will be a celebration of those things.”

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