The mission of the Center for Business Development is to provide customized support, education and training for entrepreneurs and small businesses in Meridian Technology Center’s district. Through the creation of new companies and the strengthening of existing companies we contribute to the expansion of our regional and state economy.
We connect with our communities through three primary activities:
1. Business Consulting & Coaching
We offer business consulting and coaching to companies and individuals within our district. We will consult with an aspiring entrepreneur to discuss the feasibility of an idea or engage in business coaching with a business owner. Whether you need marketing assistance, advice on identifying a new market for your product or service, or assistance learning how to hire great employees, we can help.
2. Business Incubation
Business incubation is a focused process including management guidance, technical assistance and tailored consulting for young, growing companies. We engage in business incubation with both Residential and Virtual Tenants. Residential Tenants access services and rent dedicated office or lab space for up to three years. Virtual Tenants access services but do not rent space. Clients can move easily between both tenant types depending on their business needs and situation.
3. Networking & Education Events
We organize opportunities for entrepreneurs and small businesses to listen and learn from each other. We also offer regular sessions on the basics of starting a business as well as partner with our local chambers of commerce to bring education and training events to the communities in our district.
Original discussions regarding opening a technology business incubator in Stillwater began in 1995. After benchmarking incubator and incubation models, funding was arranged and building commenced. The Center for Business Development opened its doors with a 15,000-square-foot facility in January 1998. The early years of the Center corresponded to the dot-com bubble of the late 1990s-early 2000s. During this time the focus of the incubator was on technology business development.
By the late 2000s, the facility was full and an expansion of an additional 6,000 square feet of light industrial space was made. There have been three directors of the Center during its life: Kay Wade, Amy Polonchek and Ron Duggins. The Center continues to serve a wide variety of clients, not only technology based, but also innovative companies working in fields such as software, medical support and food production.