Central Arizona College Benefits Pinal County Economy Through Small Business Development Center Incubators
By Angela Askey, Director of Marketing
The Central Arizona College Small Business Development Center (SBDC) recognizes the growing challenge in today’s economy for the small business owner to manage a profitable business. Jointly funded by CAC and the Small Business Administration, various resources are available to counsel and train business owners.
The mission of the SBDC is to help the businesses of Pinal County to succeed. One-on-one confidential counseling, training workshops and classes are available for business owners at CAC campuses throughout the County. The SBDC also conducts periodic seminars that offer clients and the public training in a variety of areas, such as starting or buying a business, use of specific software applications, marketing, and developing an effective advertising program.
SBDC services include, but are not limited to, assisting businesses with wellness evaluations, business plan development, financial/loan packaging, government procurement, market research and analysis, production, organization, promotion, engineering and technical problems, feasibility studies, strategic planning, and more.
The center’s personal consultants provide a breadth of knowledge and experience for new, as well as experienced business owners. One on one confidential counseling is available to all business owners and may vary from just a few meetings to a more long term commitment, depending upon the business owner’s needs. All counseling assistance is provided at no cost to the client.
Leasable space, shared facilities and business incubation services are available to new and emerging businesses at the CAC Corporate Center (540 N. Camino Mercado, Suite One; Casa Grande, AZ 85222.) Known as incubators, these spaces are designed to provide entrepreneurs with a business support system designed to reduce the risk of small business failure. They provide avenues for economic development by creating new jobs and income and assist business owners in becoming self-sufficient.
Interested business owners must complete an application process to be considered for the business incubation program. Criteria evaluated during this process examine the potential for the business to create quality jobs in Pinal County while diversifying and strengthening the local economy. Other criteria reviewed determine if the business plan demonstrates a viable and potentially successful market approach and structure and evaluates the experience and entrepreneurial spirit of the management team. Most importantly, adequate financial, personnel and technical resources should be available to the business.
There are approximately 1200 incubators throughout the United States and 24 incubators in the state of Arizona.
As of September 2015, the CAC incubator program has helped with the startup of 10 new business in Pinal County. Businesses that have emerged from the business incubator at the CAC Corporate Center include: AZ & Apparel, LLC, Oasis Pavilion Nursing & Rehab, LLC and Bucks 4 Style Clothing Consignment. An additional extended care facility, one nutrition facility, one home care facility, and one audiologist in the County were also launched with assistance from the incubator program. The Eloy Business Center provided incubation services and assisted in the start-up of one multi location extended care firm in that community. Additional businesses that have emerged from the business incubator in the Silver King Hotel in Florence include one retail fudge and dessert shop, one logo clothing shop and one organic apparel manufacturer.
For additional information about the SBDC or incubator business opportunities please call 520-494-6610.