Any business which provides a product or service, that is not retail or non-profit in nature, is eligible for consideration by The Burson Center. The Burson Center is a mixed-use incubator meaning there is no one specific industry sector that is accepted into the program; however, the Carroll Tomorrow Board has named target industry sectors which receive priority placement and assistance. Those industry sectors include: Information/Communications Technology, Entertainment Media, Aerospace, Automation, Nanotechnology, Healthcare, Logistics, and related research and development.
Businesses seeking resident admission to the Center are evaluated on an individual basis. The incubator provides affordable 24/7 resident office space and/or warehousing as a part of the incubation program. The purpose of the incubator is not to transfer established companies in the community to the incubator, but instead to provide services to start-ups which will enhance the entrepreneur’s chances of success. Resident Clients have access to all of the services and programs offered by the center, including:
Entrepreneurs starting a business may access the resources and programs of the Center through the Start-up Membership. Start-up Members have access to all of the services and programs of the center but do not have an office located at the center. Some services may also be limited, please see the handbook for details. Start-up Members may reserve meeting facilities with a 24-hour notice, and have access to the small meeting rooms as needed when available. Start-up Members are welcome to maintain a business address at the Center and have business mail/packages directed to the Center. Start-up Members will be provided on-going correspondence of upcoming programs and information from the Center. Start-up Members may utilize the legal and accounting resources of the Center. They may also participate in all continuing education seminars, trainings, counseling, and management/technical assistance programs as available via the Center.
Small business owners may access the resources and programs of the Center through the Affiliate Membership. Affiliate Members have access to meeting rooms A & B in addition to common areas and hot desk. Affiliate Members receive limited consulting, a business plan review, trainings, marketing, and more. Affiliates are welcome to maintain a business address at the Center and have business mail/packages directed to the Center. This membership is designed for businesses that need occasional assistance and would like to take advantage of many of the services offered at the Center.
Although this membership is open to all small businesses equal to or less than five years of age, we recommend this membership for businesses between years 2-5. If you need occasional assistance with projects and wish to be associated with the center, the Resource Membership is for you. Resource Members receive on-going correspondence in regards to trainings, classes, seminars, etc. They also have access to our library, hot desk, and receive a discount towards special projects. Resource Members may also participate in a Business Plan Review.
1. Schedule an appointment for an initial consultation and pre-screening with the Incubator Manager. This will be an informal discussion about your business to determine the type(s) of assistance needed and available.
2. Review the information package which includes: the Client Handbook, a Business Plan template, resource assistance information, and the Application for Admission, and supporting documents (Handbook pages 22-28).
3. Complete the Application for Admission/Supporting Documents and return it to The Burson Center along with a business plan or at least, an executive business summary and development strategy including a current business or personal financial statement.
4. Register for and complete the required SBDC ‘Starting a Business’ seminar conducted regularly at The Burson Center or neighboring venue. In the event a ‘Start up’ class is not scheduled, admission may be granted with a commitment to complete the course within 3 months of starting incubation.
5. The Burson Center Manager and Executive Director will then approve or decline admission based on business strategy, compatibility, and expected outcomes. The prospective member will be officially notified in writing in the event of being declined.