Hampton, VA - Almost every business owner has struggled at some point in their career. Whether it’s location, staffing or advertising, most entrepreneurs don’t have the capital and resources to properly operate their business. That’s why the Hampton University Small Business Incubator was created.
Hampton University's Small Business Incubator is a Success
10/17/2016 - #57
“Under the vision of Dr. Harvey, he wanted to provide a facility that would help minority businesses grow and expand and create a venue where entrepreneurs could get the support that was needed to help them become more successful,” said J.R. Locke, Executive Director, HU Small Business Incubator.
Located in the heart of Phoebus, the HU Small Business Incubator was created through a partnership with Hampton University and the City of Hampton.
“The first thing we do is that we provide people an environment where they can work in around other entrepreneurs which is going to create a support system for them to drive and be successful,"
The second benefit the incubator provides, is management consulting and mentoring for business owners.
“When you’re out there in the world trying to start your business on your own, whether it is out of your house, out of your car or on the streets, it is just you against the world,” said Locke.
According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, About two-thirds of businesses with employees survive at least 2 years and about half survive at least 5 years.
“When you’re in the incubator, you actually have the benefit of having someone to help mentor you and provide you with the opportunity to sit down and discuss strategies on how your business can become successful, “ said Locke.
144 square feet of office space alone, can cost a business owner anywhere from $800 to $900 in the area. For the same space including an administrative assistant, access to conference rooms, office supplies and mentoring, members of the program pay just $275 a month. After each year, rates increase by $100. A business can choose to remain in the incubator up to 4 years.
Tamishia Henry and her husband Howard Henry started their business, Good Steward Benefits, with the HU program. Their business helps other businesses employ and properly care for those with disabilities
“I am very passionate about helping individuals with disabling conditions. It is a personal situation to me because I have a daughter with disabilities,” said Henry.
In just 3 months, Henry has employed 7 people. Her business has grown to the point where she now needs commercial space.
“We both have a passion to help others. That’s why we named our business Good Steward. We believe that anyone who comes in our path, we want to help guide them in that success. The incubator has helped us with that purpose and mission,” said Henry.