If you have the bare bones of a business idea, Innovation Central Society is here for you.
If you have a business already up and running, but want to take the next step, Innovation Central Society (ICS) is here for you.
“There is a massive potential for innovation,” says executive director Robert Quibell. “That will never change.”
While ICS has already been hard at work in the region, Quibell says this yea, they want to make more people aware of who they are and what they do.
“We’re going to be running a series of outreach programs throughout the region we cover, which is from Quesnel to Prince George and from McBride to Fraser Lake.
“We’re also going to be starting a series of Tech Talks in May. Local entrepreneurs will meet and talk about innovation. The plan is to have one local company talk about they’re doing with new technology, and let that idea go out to others.”
The society is also looking to create more linkages with local schools, especially the College of New Caledoina and the University of Northern B.C. They’ve already found some success working with students, and not necessarily local ones.
“We brought some students up from Emily Carr College of Art and Design for Start-up Week, and one of them won the competition we held there. They’ve been back up here working on what is called User Interface, or Experience Interface. It’s designed to make the computer programs look better and be easier for the user.
“Quite frankly, we make really amazing back-end stuff here, but the way a lot of our programs look is awful.”
Quibell says ICS can help entrepreneurs at many stages of business creation.
“You’ve got an interesting idea, it’s kind of working, and you want to know ‘What’s the next step?’
“People are lost a lot of the time when they’re starting a new business with anew idea. What you don’t know about starting a business will hurt you.”
One area ICS can give new entrepreneurs a hand with is accessing funding to take their business, whatever step it’s at, to the next level. Quibell says he’s still learning how to access some of the programs available.
“I had no idea there was so much money for research and bering a product to market.”
For more information about Innovation Central Society, visit the website at innvationcentral.ca, call them at 250-562-9622 ext. 108, or drop by the office at 1566 Seventh Ave., in the Community Futures building.