SARASOTA - A new business incubation facility located in Sarasota’s enterprise zone is being launched by a local nonprofit.
The Economic Development Investment Fund is opening a 6,000-square-foot facility at 1945 17th St. It will also serve as EDIF’s new headquarters, officials said.
The incubation facility is accepting applications, and will incubate up to five businesses at a time for periods of six-12 months per business, said Brian Caswell, EDIF founder and president.
“The facility is a great extension of EDIF’s mission, to foster economic growth through small business lending and support services,” he said. “Our goal is to strengthen our economy and local community by helping start-up companies grow, increase revenues and create jobs.”
Entrepreneurs will have access to programs and services their companies need to succeed, Caswell said. Participating businesses will receive office space, furniture, high speed Internet and phone lines, conference and warehouse space, kitchen space, access to equipment for prototyping, access to media and art design, on-site CPAs and loan underwriters, wellness and nutrition programs, potential tax credits and incentives, an entrepreneurs’ library center, environmental stewardship training, fitness equipment and a garden, security and 24/7 facilities access, consulting and training, and access to capital.
EDIF plans to offer these services free of charge, pending adequate support from the community, he said. EDIF is currently fundraising to defray the costs associated with the incubation facility, and is accepting tax-deductible donations through http://www.indiegogo.com/30jobs.