Business Incubators Add to Thriving Business Economy
January 7th, 2014
With the nation’s 12th-largest economy, prestigious universities and an array of resources that fuel innovation and creativity, the entrepreneurial spirit burns bright in Northeast Ohio. Helping spur the development of entrepreneurs and small businesses in The Plus are business incubators, which provide the resources new organizations need to get off the ground.
In Northeast Ohio, incubators are taking a leading role in developing our entrepreneurs, placing The Plus on the cutting-edge of economic development. Continue reading to learn about some of the region’s unique business accelerators and programs below.
Youngstown Business Incubator: The Youngstown Business Incubator is an internationally recognized program focused on B2B software application companies in the Mahoning Valley. Thirty-two portfolio companies operate out of the incubator where company leaders are able to share expertise, technical skills and resources with their peers as they each work to accelerate the development of their start-ups and fledgling companies. Akron Global Business Accelerator: Since 1983, the Akron Global Business Accelerator has been instrumental in developing “technology-based entrepreneurial innovation.” Working in high-tech industries like biomedicine, advanced materials, alternative energy and information technology, the accelerator has helped grow innovative and successful companies such as Summit Data Communications, Echogen Power Systems, NI Medical and more. Bizdom U: Launched in May 2011 by Cleveland Cavaliers’ owner, Dan Gilbert, Bizdom U “is a comprehensive, non-profit, entrepreneurship boot camp that trains, mentors and partners with aspiring entrepreneurs to launch and grow successful businesses.” The four-month program creates a real-world experience for local entrepreneurs who are tasked with crafting a business plan that can be implemented in Cleveland’s downtown core. If the entrepreneur’s business plan is approved, they can receive up to $100,000 in start-up funding. Applications are being accepted now for the spring 2014 session. JumpStart: JumpStart began in 2004 when civic, community and philanthropic leaders came together to create economic transformation in Northeast Ohio. JumpStart invests in high potential companies while providing entrepreneurial assistance. The coaching arm of JumpStart is led by former successful entrepreneurs who know what it takes to build a business from the ground up. In 2012, $114 million was generated in revenues by JumpStart companies. The Incubator at MAGNET: Founded in 2005, MAGNET’s business incubator provides support to technology-orientated companies in the areas of management, business review, networking and product development. As a vital player in the entrepreneurial community, MAGNET’s Product Development division was named a Center for Excellence in Product Innovation by the Ohio Department of Development. LaunchHouse: Located in Shaker Heights, LaunchHouse focuses on promising entrepreneurs and ideas that have a high growth potential and can quickly achieve market validation with a small investment. The company has provided more than $380,000 in investment capital since its inception in 2009. Through development efforts, a community of mentors and a network of investors, LaunchHouse companies have been able to raise more than $9 million in follow-on funding. BrainTree: Located in Mansfield, BrainTree provides low-cost operating opportunities for new-to-market and small businesses. Its tenants include an array of innovative companies such as Right Time, LLC, Rapid Forms Inc., Hess Industries Ltd., and LapKeyBoard. While BrainTree assists businesses across all industries, it has a special focus on bringing cutting-edge technology to the marketplace. BioEnterprise: A business formation, recruitment and acceleration initiative in Cleveland, BioEnterprise is designed to grow health care companies and commercialize bioscience technologies. BioEnterprise’s founders and partners are the Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals, Case Western Reserve University, Summa Health System and Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron. Each year, BioEnterprise chooses a select number of companies to focus their resources and networks to help them achieve greater levels of business success. Great Lakes Innovation and Development Enterprise (GLIDE): Located in Elyria, GLIDE is a comprehensive regional innovation center, resource hub and business incubator that supports all facets of the start-up, development and growth of enterprises. One of 12 Edison Technology Incubators in Ohio, GLIDE provides support services to technology-oriented startups.