On June 3rd, Governor Rick Scott toured the Beaver Street Enterprise Center, a highly successful business incubator located in the core city that has helped to launch dozens of start-up companies that support thousands of jobs in Jacksonville.
Entering the lobby with Executive Director Jackie Perry, Scott greeted Dr. R. V. Lee, CEO of FreshMinistries’ which launched the incubator in 2003.
Since its inception the incubator has graduated over a dozen successful companies. In 2013 alone, these companies generated more than $30 million in revenue and since 2003 they have collectively generated 438 new jobs. Among the graduate companies in attendance were A. Harold and Associates, Powerhouse Anchor, Xeye, Inc. and Stafftime who won recognition as the Jax Chamber’s Small Business Leader of the Year.
Made possible through a partnership and grant with the State of Florida, The Beaver Street Enterprise Center provides support to young and emerging companies in Duval and the surrounding counties. Since its inception, companies have collectively generated $255 million in revenues and created over 1,500 new jobs. “We need to create an environment where it is easier to start a business here in Florida than anywhere in the world and where it is easier to be successful,” Scott said.
Addressing the crowd at the end of the governor’s speech, Jackie Perry reminded the group of the governor’s comment that ‘businesses need to help businesses and the local community’. “Our tenants do business with each other,” she said. “It’s that kind of entrepreneurial networking spirit that is stabilizing and growing the economy throughout our community.”
The governor also toured incubator, he met as many of the tenants as possible, inquiring about their business goals and congratulating them for choosing a practical and promising base for future success.
At the LifePoint Institute, Scott shook hands with students, asking about their studies. LifePoint provides a free nine-week course that prepares unemployed and under-employed adults for positions in the hospitality and CNA industry. For more information on Beaver Street Enterprise Center contact Director Jackie Perry at 265-4700 or visit www.bsecenter.org.