The National Business Incubation Association says that business incubation programs provide entrepreneurs with a guiding hand to help them turn their ideas into viable businesses. Since the first incubator opened in Batavia, N.Y., 50 years ago, incubation programs around the world have been providing client companies with business support services and resources tailored to young firms to help increase their chances of success.
Does Business Incubation Improve Odds of Success?
The U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration validates that incubation works. Their research says that business incubators provide communities with significantly greater results at less cost than do any other type of public works project.
Researchers found that business incubators are the most effective means of creating jobs – more effective than roads and bridges, industrial parks, commercial buildings, and sewer and water projects. In fact, incubators provide up to 20 times more jobs than community infrastructure projects (e.g., water and sewer projects) at a Federal Government cost of $144 to $216 per job compared with $2,920 to $6,872 for the latter.
In another EDA-funded study in the mid 1990s, it was found that 87 percent of all firms that had graduated from NBIA member incubation programs remained in business – and about 84 percent remained in the incubator's community.
It is estimated that in 2005 alone, North American incubators assisted more than 27,000 start up companies that provided full-time employment for more than 100,000 workers and generated annual revenues of more than $17 billion. Many thousands more jobs were created by companies that had already graduated from these business incubation programs and now operate self-sufficiently in their communities.
If a strategic focus on innovation and entrepreneurship makes the difference in businesses started in business incubators, a similar focus will work for you.
Find out more about business incubation by visiting the National Business Incubation Association at www.nbia.org.
If you can't find an incubator, you may be able to simulate the incubation process by participating in a structured process. See our suggestions on doing this by visiting Join The Baby Boomer Entrepreneurs.
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