Governor Steve Beshear's Communications Office
Gov. Beshear Announces Opening of iHub Building for New Companies, Entrepreneurs
Coworking, networking facility offers innovators work space, mentoring and training
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Governor Steve Beshear today joined Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer, University of Louisville President James Ramsey and other officials at the opening of the iHub, a coworking and networking space in downtown Louisville for entrepreneurs and innovators.
The iHub offers coworking space, meeting rooms and training for very-early-stage companies where entrepreneurs can interact and network with their peers – and possibly form collaborations and new businesses. Located on property owned by Nucleus, the life sciences innovation center and economic development arm of the University of Louisville Foundation, the iHub hopes to help some iHub users grow to where they and their companies can move into a larger Nucleus business incubator building, such as the $18 million, eight-story facility now under construction just across the street from the iHub, on the former Haymarket site.
“Innovation and collaboration are vital to Kentucky’s economic future, and these early-stage entrepreneurs can thrive in the right environment,” said Gov. Beshear. “The iHub provides a place where some of Kentucky’s best and most innovative can work, network and form relationships that will help their businesses succeed and grow, which translates into more jobs for Kentuckians.”
According to a global coworking survey by DeskMag magazine, there are almost 1,800 coworking spaces worldwide, with nearly 700 in the U.S. alone. The rapid rise of coworking spaces is driven by many factors, including technologies such as cloud computing that helps workers access files from anywhere that has an internet connection; more freelancers, women and caregivers in the workforce seeking more flexible work arrangements; and economic pressures on growing companies needing to provide offices for workers.
“Nucleus and the University of Louisville understand the importance of fostering entrepreneurs and innovation,” said Vickie Yates Brown, Nucleus president and CEO. “The iHub is one more way we're doing that by providing coworking space where independent contractors, freelancers, telecommuters, and other business people can access an alternative professional work environment outside their regular offices, homes and local coffee houses.”
The iHub not only caters to independent workers, but can also provide complementary and supportive work spaces for out-of-town company personnel traveling to Louisville and for local companies who want their staff to interact with employees outside their own sphere, to broaden their perspective and bring new ideas back to their employers.
Plans are for the iHub to offer a full calendar of events, such as classes, workshops and mentoring sessions. The first of these is the FastTrac TechVenture program, currently being taught to technology and life science entrepreneurs who signed up for the classes. Developed by the Kauffman Foundation, the largest American foundation focused on entrepreneurship, the “mini-MBA” program covers a wide range of topics, provides intensive coaching, and helps connect entrepreneurs with the local innovation ecosystem.
For more information about the iHub, contact Mark Hebert at 502-852-3133 or email@example.com or Vickie Yates Brown at 502-584-7824 or firstname.lastname@example.org.