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Incubator FUNDamentals: NBIA surveys 26 nonprofit incubators and reports on financing start-up incubation programs

by Brian Walker

June 2002

In the beginning, there was funding … at least that's what every prospective incubator manager would hope for. One of the greatest obstacles to starting an incubation program is securing the hundreds of thousands of dollars that it takes just to open for business. Incubator managers have a large number of funding sources to pursue, but an equally large number of expenses to cover.

To learn about the levels and sources of funding necessary to launch a nonprofit incubator, NBIA conducted an informal survey of 26 nonprofit incubators in the United States that have opened their doors since Jan. 1, 1999. We found that incubator developers may fight an uphill battle to get the funding they need, but the money and support are certainly available. So pull out your calculators and ledgers as NBIA addresses some of the most frequently asked questions about launching a nonprofit incubation program.

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Keywords: budget -- incubator, facility selection/construction/renovation, feasibility study, financial management -- incubator, funding sources/fundraising – incubator, subsidy

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