NewBo City Market has launched The Hatchery, a new Entrepreneurial Development program and expansion of the nonprofit Business Incubator.
This program helps underserved residents of our local community who want to start a food or retail business by reducing barriers to entry and giving them the tools with which to thrive within an entrepreneurial setting. It is an expansion of the Market’s ongoing efforts to help small, locally-owned, local product-based businesses get their start and expand out into the community.
Since opening in 2012, several businesses who got their start at the Market have built their own brick and mortar locations throughout the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City areas, including Saucy Focaccia, Moss, That One Cupcake Place, Almost Famous Popcorn, Maggie's Farm Wood Fired Pizza, Frolics, One More Bite, Dumpling Darling and Get Fresh.
Through the new Hatchery program, grants are available for participants, which are received in the form of a rent discount.
There are three main components to becoming a part of The Hatchery program that we hope will offer support to start-ups and help build stronger businesses; personalized business development guidance, vital sign check-ins, and continuing business education.
NewBo City Market will be partnering with local business resources and organizations to provide the educational aspect of this program and to reach new entrepreneurs.
“We’re big fans of the resources that NewBo City Market provides and are very excited to see the experience amplified with the addition of The Hatchery program,” said Scott Swenson, Regional Director of the Kirkwood Small Business Development Center. “It’s so important for a new business to find a great beginning for their concept. NewBo Market is an amazing place to get that start in a nurturing environment and one within reach of those wanting to pursue their passion.”
The Market has already welcomed one Shopkeeper to The Hatchery program, local health and beauty boutique Herbally Anointed.
“I wanted to have a personal connection with my customers,” said owner Jessica Renee, who began bringing her products to the Market for the Black-Owned Business Guest Vendor Markets. “Being here at the Market has allowed me to meet so many new people and help them find what they like in my products.”
Julie Parisi, Director of Market Operations, said she developed The Hatchery program with the hopes of reducing the barriers to entry that many local entrepreneurs face and of further diversifying the businesses that call the Market “home.”
“We want this to be the beginning of a renaissance for NewBo City Market,” she said. “And we are so excited to help local small businesses continue to grow.”