A Statewide Look At South Carolina’s Thriving Tech Incubators

By March 5, 2019Story, Uncategorized

The Greenville Business Magazine featured the tech incubators across the state of South Carolina in an article posted March 4th; NEXT was featured among them as a resource to entrepreneurs in the upstate.

As the market has grown to support almost 7,000 tech businesses operating across South Carolina, it can be difficult for aspiring entrepreneurs to find their footing. Fortunately, the state is home to a diverse array of small business incubators, each dedicated to growing local companies and the local tech economy.

In the upstate, NEXT houses three separate facilities centered around the bustling downtown of Greenville—the NEXT Innovation Center, NEXT on Main, and NEXT Manufacturing—which offers everything from individual desk space all the way up to 10,000-square-foot workspaces.

NEXT is looking to grow the number of global headquarters in the Upstate. With three facilities, including a specialized center for manufacturing, traditional office space, and flexible leasing, there is an opportunity for every venture to weave themselves into the busy entrepreneurial community of Greenville. NEXT serves entrepreneurs in the surrounding areas of the upstate, enabling companies to get plugged into the vibrant tech market.

In Columbia, you can find the technology industry mainstay the University of South Carolina/Columbia Technology Incubator. The incubator’s CoLAB space offers up a more traditional workspace available for rent, while the center’s LaunchPad program serves as an eight-week boot camp for young companies to establish and validate their business models. Successful startups that began at the tech incubator include IDV, Interactive Digital Visualization, which created all the digital trees featured in the movie Avatar.

The 40,000-square-foot USC/Columbia Tech Incubator facility also features the separate IdeaLabs, a 20,000-square-foot space on the USC campus offering office and wet-lab space for companies needing to conduct experiments and safely work with chemicals. Breakout startups at IdeaLabs include biotech companies IMCS and DPX Technologies. Current companies utilizing incubator lab space are nanotech developers Neo-Nanomedics and The Harbor graduate Engineered Marine Coatings Quantum Paint.

In Charleston, the Harbor Entrepreneur Center serves as a go-to source for accelerating small companies in various stages of development. Currently, 55 entrepreneurs utilize The Harbor’s float space, which offers a coffee shop-style setting where they can set up for the day and pack things up at the close of business. Inside The Harbor’s workspace at Charleston’s Pacific Box and Crate facility, growing companies can rent private offices until they are ready to set out on their own.

In the six years that The Harbor Entrepreneur Center has operated, a total of 10 cohorts have graduated from the center’s 14-week accelerator program. Among those groups, Dynepic and Bidr stand out as The Harbor’s main breakout companies.

 

See the full article from the Greenville Business Magazine here.

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