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Business Incubators

What is a Business Incubator?

An organization designed to accelerate the growth and success of entrepreneurial companies through an array of business support resources and services that could include physical space, capital, coaching, common services, and networking connections

Business incubation programs are often sponsored by private companies or municipal entities and public institutions, such as colleges and universities. Their goal is to help create and grow young businesses by providing them with necessary support and financial and technical services.

Incubators provide numerous benefits to owners of start-up businesses. For example:

  • Their office and manufacturing space is offered at below-market rates
  • Their staff supplies advice and much-needed expertise in:
    • developing business and marketing plans
    • helping to fund fledgling businesses

Companies typically spend an average of two years in a business incubator, during which time they often share telephone, secretarial office, and production equipment expenses with other startup companies, in an effort to reduce everyone's overhead and operational costs.

Not all business incubators are alike, however, so if you have a specialized idea for a business, try to find the incubator that best suits your requirements. If you're interested in finding an incubator in your state:

  • visit the National Business Incubation Association's website
  • get in touch with your local economic development agency, located in the phone book under the listing for your state government.
  • call the information offices of your local colleges and universities to see whether they have any business incubation programs

(Source: Entrepreneur.com)

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