City of Cleveland Hosts Meet & Greet for Retail Incubator Program Hopefuls

The City of Cleveland Retail Incubator Program, a component of Mayor Frank G. Jackson’s $65 million Neighborhood Transformation Initiative, hosted a meet and greet on Thursday, Jan. 31. The meet and greet allowed prospective businesses to interact with local residents and pitch their business ideas for a chance to participate in the entrepreneurial program.

The retail incubator program offers local entrepreneurs an opportunity to learn how to run a retail operation and grow their business before moving into a permanent new location. The program offers below market rent and subsidized build-out costs that will dramatically reduce the barrier to entry for entrepreneurs seeking a physical business space.

Six small business entrepreneurs will be selected to rotate out every two years, and one experienced restaurant business will serve as an anchor in Glenville’s new mixed-use development.

“Through my Neighborhood Transformation Initiative  and in collaboration with Cleveland Citywide Development Corporation, we are able to remove some of the barriers entrepreneurs face when starting their small business,” said Mayor Frank G. Jackson. “The retail incubator will give these entrepreneurs an opportunity to participate in the revitalization of Glenville and help neighborhood residents have increased access to many of the goods and services they need.”

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The meet and greet was the second round in the selection process which will also include specialized training and one-on-one coaching. The small businesses will present final pitches on Thursday, Mar. 7 where the six finalists will be selected.

The retail incubator will be located in Glenville’s new mixed-use development at the center of neighborhood revitalization efforts. The project will be complete in Summer 2019.

For more information on Mayor Jackson’s Neighborhood Initiative, visit http://www.clevelandohio.gov/nti.