Another Cohort of The Hub Graduates
April 2016 saw another successful group of companies graduate from the Hub Incubator Program at CBaSE.
Five teams; Vintage Instincts, The Making Box, Better Start Naturals, TRAVA and Protein Innovations presented their success, pivots and future goals to a group of Innovation Guelph Mentors (including Hub Manager Niel Palmer). These mentors along with Melanie Lang, Director of CBaSE, judge the final presentations and decide who will receive the final installment of their seed funding, and who will not.
CBaSE would like to congratulate this cohort on their truly amazing dedication to the program and their accomplishments and progress! This cohort shows great potential and we are excited to see them grow. Next week, a new cohort begins in their journey! For more information on the Hub Incubator Program and how to apply, please visit our website!
A short overview of the journey each team went through:
Vintage Instincts, a company creating custom clothing using genuine vintage fabrics and designs, entered the Hub looking for coaching to help them increase their conversion rate online and for monetary support for expanding their inventory.
Alex Rogers, founder of Vintage Instincts credits his time in the Hub Incubator Program with helping him to increase his sales by 100%, and says he has made many successful connections including with other businesses within the Hub and in the greater Guelph area.
Moving forward, Alex will continue to work on his overall web reach as this is where he finds most of his customers.
All the best, Alex!
The Making Box
The Making Box, an improv and comedy company, joined the Hub hoping to learn about revenue generation and for monetary support to aid in the renovations of their new space in Downtown Guelph! During their time in the Hub, The Making Box realized that one branch of their business could support the other! In this realization, they decided to make the pivot from focusing on comedy shows and improv classes to dedicating more time and resources towards their Improv for Business professional training services.
Jay Reid, founder of The Making Box had this to say about his personal experience in the Hub Incubator Program:
“"The Hub is the most effective entrepreneurial training experience I’ve had the pleasure of being a part of. With new ventures there's no clear path. Weekly check-ins with your manager and incubator cohorts allow you to discover the variety of ways you can move forward and gain ground. I’m a little surprised about how emotionally connected I am to everyone's wins."
Good luck in the future Hayley and Jay!
Better Start Naturals
Better Start Naturals is a company dedicated to providing healthy drink choices to children, or that’s how they started out. During their time in the Hub, Better Start Naturals realized that they’d developed a product that appealed to adults just as much as it appealed to children. In this pivot, Better Start Naturals realized that they needed to modify their product to have benefits that would appeal to adults for themselves and for their kids. During their time in the Hub, Better Start Naturals has created a minimum viable product and a label and bottle design concept. Better Start Naturals has also decided to add a monetary give-back to their business model with 5 cents from every bottle sold being donated to charity.
Co-founder Jessica Phulchand says of the Hub Incubator Program and CBaSE: “"CBaSE is a great source of information for entrepreneurship and provides a supportive learning environment. It has been great to meet other like-minded peers who have an entrepreneurial spirit. It has helped us know more about the partnerships and cash-flow issues entrepreneurs face; keep us accountable for milestones via weekly meetings; and we're enjoying the company we have encountered (i.e. peers and mentors)."”
Good luck Better Start Naturals!
Protein Innovations has created an exciting product which I can only describe here as a “ agriculturally focused protein based technology”. A group of scientists, Protein Innovations worked on their sales and business model and re-formulated their product thanks to access to wet and dry lab space at the University of Guelph as arranged by CBaSE and The Hub.
Moving forward Protein Innovation will be looking towards patenting their products and working on sales strategies.
Good luck, guys!
TRAVA is a social enterprise dedicated to supporting women in Sri Lanka and putting fully styled outfits in your closet! DeAsia and Harmonie first heard about the Hub after winning funding at Startup Royale 2015. Throughout the Hub Program, TRAVA conducted market research striving to better understand their potential target market’s shopping habbits.