The Business Innovation Group (BIG) at Georgia Southern University is dedicated to establishing a statewide ecosystem in Georgia that aids entrepreneurs in establishing, nurturing, and expediting their profit-oriented businesses. This group facilitates the utilization of university resources, generates prospects for hands-on student learning, and cultivates an environment that encourages a mindset focused on expansion across the state.
History & Overview of Georgia Southern University Business Innovation Group
Operating within the domain of the Associate Provost of Innovation & Commercialization at Georgia Southern University, BIG is resolute in its mission to create and implement fresh technological platforms, inventive programs, high-quality services, and educational occasions. These initiatives are aimed at addressing the requirements of local businesses, entrepreneurs, and innovators who are eager to enhance their business activities or introduce novel enterprises, products, and services.
Centers and Programs Run by the Georgia Southern University Business Innovation Group
- Innovation Center at Statesboro – The Innovation Incubator offers dedicated space to 20+ local entrepreneurs at City Campus in downtown Statesboro starting as low as $75/month.
- Physical benefits for members include: a *hot desk or designated office space, meeting room use, shared printer access, wireless network access, access to AV equipment, access to shared office equipment, controlled access to a secure building, VIP admittance to select workshops and events, business address, mail management, and visibility on our website.
- Developmental benefits for members include: advisement, coaching and leadership assessment; business consulting and technical assistance; access to University professors, class projects and student research; training classes – webinars, programs and workshops; market research; cash flow & financial projections; access to banks/investors.
- FabLab at Statesboro – FabLab is a gym for inventors, tinkerers, and makers. The center features equipment like 3D printers, Laser Etcher/Engraver/Cutter, 4×8 CNC Router, Table Saw, Band Saw, Disk/Belt Sander and more.
- Metter Business Center – Georgia Southern University’s Business Innovation Group partnered with the City of Metter and Georgia Grown to open its second Innovation Incubator in Metter, GA focused on Agricultural and Ag-related businesses.
- Physical benefits include fully furnished office space, fiber internet and wi-fi, meeting room use, shared printer access, visibility on the website, co-working space, access to AV equipment, and controlled access to a secure building.
- Developmental benefits include coaching, market research, access to university faculty and students, mentoring, networking events, workshops, and technical support.
- Hinesville Business Incubator – Georgia Southern University’s Business Innovation Group partnered with the City of Hinesville to build and open 5,000 square foot business incubator to accommodate 12 new business clients.
- EDA Center – The Georgia Southern University EDA University Center connects the university assets within the Business Innovation Group (BIG). By combining the efforts of the university’s most successful and visible entrepreneurship and economic development centers, the EDA University Center facilitates the creation and retention of jobs, the start of new businesses, the expansion of existing businesses, and assist in the development of a robust and vibrant regional economic ecosystem.
Georgia Enterprise Network for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (GENIE) – This is an initiative of the Business Innovation Group at Georgia Southern University that connects individuals and communities in rural Georgia with the state’s economic development ecosystem and the integrated network of technological, business, and professional resources at Georgia Southern. By linking rural communities with ecosystem resources, GENIE uses modern technology to connect homegrown talent, community organizations, and resident leaders with the expert advice and training they need to reinvigorate local communities and make Georgia the Tech Hub of the East Coast.
- BiG Idea Accelerator – BIG has partnered with The Creative Coast to host a 4 month-long (one day per month) educational & mentoring program for entrepreneurs. The program leverages the Kauffman Foundation’s FastTrac program, a full online suite of tools, which will help participants develop their Business Plan, Financial Model and more. The program includes:
- Direct mentorship and education from experienced Founders and Industry Experts
- Hands-on, intensive Customer Discovery and market viability research to test your idea
- Resources to help you analyze, think critically, and create your Business Model Canvas and Plan
- Financial guidance to help you focus on the important numbers for your business to be a success
- Serious accountability and honest feedback to help you get your idea moving in the right direction
- BiG Cafe – Each month two local entrepreneurs have six minutes to present a prepared overview of their businesses followed by 20 minutes of Q&A with other entrepreneurs and local service providers. BIG Café will open at 8:30 a.m. for networking and coffee. Presentations will begin promptly at 9:00 a.m. and will finish at 10:00 a.m.