Small Business Incubators for Local Economic Development
Small business incubators are often a crucial resource for new or first time entrepreneurs, who often lack the resources and financing to successfully get their businesses off the ground. Incubator programs can help startup businesses ensure that their expenses are kept under control and that they have the access they need to the business expertise and resources that the organizers of the program can provide. The first and foremost priority of any small business incubator program is to support entrepreneurs, especially local entrepreneurs if the main vision of the incubator program is to bolster local economic development.
At their most basic level of support, small business incubator programs will provide budding small businesses a physical space to conduct and grow their company at significantly lowered rates of rent, allowing the business to keep a larger portion of their initial intakes of profits. Some incubator programs will provide further services that are usually optional, but helpful, such as accounting services and legal assistance. These services are also offered at significantly reduced rates. Other benefits of small business incubator programs include ample networking opportunities, shared secretarial services, and easy access to information and shared knowledge.
At the Hardee County Economic Development Council, the Industrial Development Authority partnered with the Economic Development Authority to open a facility that provides startups and struggling local businesses with these services and more, in an effort to strengthen the economic development and growth of Hardee County. Companies that apply to be a part of the hybrid incubator/accelerator program with the Council will be able to offer high-wage, high-skilled job opportunities to the local community of Hardee County.