What is Incubation?

Business incubators are a hybrid type of economic development facility that combines features of entrepreneurship, business facilitation and real estate development. They have proven to be the most effective technique yet devised for creating employment, commercialising new technologies and developing local economies.

Business incubators provide a physical location in which a new business can commence, coupled with support services such as shared facilities and business advice. A typical business incubator with about 1500 sqm of leasable space would accommodate between 20 and 50 new businesses.

Once fully operational it would graduate an average of 15 businesses per year. Over a ten year period such an incubator would “hatch” over 150 new businesses, employing a total of 600-900 people and turning over around $200m per year.

Not all communities are large enough to manage an incubator of this size, but smaller communities can have a scaled-down version which is networked with neighbouring incubators to achieve the necessary economies of scale to enable the incubator to be financially self-supporting. Some communities can support much larger facilities.