5508 offers professional work space and business assistance services to highly motivated entrepreneurs and freelancers in the Tampa community. Instead of housing your business in your garage or having your kitchen table double as your office, 5508 Collaborists are plugged into a community of people who can become mentors, investors, developers, customers and friends. Collaborists have priority access to conference & classrooms, networking events, lectures, seminars, entrepreneurship courses, furnished workspace, comprehensive business development, and other programs designed to educate and inspire. From classes specifically designed to empower entrepreneurs, to inspirational sessions from leading business-builders and others, 5508 offers a full range of programming.
Coming Soon: Classes & Workshops for Professional Development
5508 Business Incubator Handbook
Welcome to the Business Incubator Program.
You have joined a business support program that accelerates the successful development of start-up and fledgling companies by providing entrepreneurs with an array of targeted resources and services. The 5508 Coworking & Collaboration Exchange’s Business Incubator’s main goal is to provide assistance to increase growth potential, resulting in a self sustaining, profitable company. The 5508 Coworking & Collaboration Incubator Program’s mission is to support the launch, growth, stabilization and long-term success of business enterprises in Hillsborough County. As a participant in the 5508 Exchange Business Incubator Program, one of four membership programs at the Exchange, you will have access to management guidance, technical assistance and consulting from professionals tailored to young growing companies. 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies have access to appropriate rental space and flexible leases, shared basic business services and equipment, technology support services and, as appropriate, assistance in obtaining the financing necessary for company growth.
A basic outline of the services and support available to you is summarized in this handbook. Keep in mind that some of the most valuable rewards to participation in the 5508 Exchange Business Incubator Program come from the community of entrepreneurs who now surround you every day. Please take advantage of your peers and of the staff here at the 5508 Exchange. We can all contribute to the success of your company.
The 5508 Coworking & Collaboration Exchange is located on the northeast end of East Tampa just off Hillsborough and 50th Street in an industrial area on land partially designated as a Community Redevelopment Area (CRA). In addition to the 10,000 square feet Event Garage, the 5508 Exchange includes four buildings containing approximately 21,000 square feet of leasable office, manufacturing and training space with x acres of parking areas on the southside of the campus.
The Incubator is located in a designated Enterprise Zone (EZ-3001). Thus, 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies can qualify and benefit from state tax incentives including a new job tax credit, among others. For more information contact:
Ms. Lynn I. Schultz
Hillsborough County Economic Development Department
7402 North 56th Street; Suite 425
Tampa, FL 33617
813) 914-4028 (Extension 62010) (813) 914-4027 (FAX) firstname.lastname@example.org
The 5508 Coworking & Collaboration Exchange provides services to a wide range of entrepreneurs, but to apply for the 5508 Exchange Business Incubator Company Program an applicant’s business must meet one of the following criteria:
In order to apply for the program, a company must complete a program application and detailed business synopsis. Companies will be evaluated by their fit with the resources and services provided by the 5508 Exchange Business Incubator Program.
APPLICATION FEE: $25 per company. The fee includes processing fees. (Effective July 1, 2017)
Businesses engaged in a wide variety of functions including light manufacturing, distribution, technology, retail, or service activities can apply for admittance to the 5508 Exchange Incubator Program. The Incubator facility is not conducive to food and beverage activities, although it is acceptable for Incubator businesses to engage in a reasonable amount of food ad beverage sales. Admission to the program is based on the following criteria:
Interested businesses are required to complete and submit an Application for admittance, which is prescreened by the 5508 Staff Collaborists and approved by the 5508 Incubator Program Interview Panel. When applicable, every attempt is made to assist any rejected Applicant in taking corrective actions necessary to resubmit an application.
5508 Incubator Program Companies must agree to participate in the 5508 Incubator Program, which includes a commitment to:
Prices for Incubator spaces are graduated on a 3-year schedule. Recognizing the need for cash flow, in the first year 5508 Incubator Program Companies pay a below market introductory rate. Each year, 5508 Incubator Program Companies pay an additional $50.00 of the base rate, ultimately paying an amount percent closer to fair market value the third (final) year. Minimum rent payments on all spaces are $175 per month. Utilities (power, gas, water, sewer, trash) are included with the exception of incubators determined to use certain utilities as a primary tool to run their businesses. In such cases, Incubator Program Companies pay ½ of the total costs pro-rated based on the square footage occupied by the business. (See Appendix A for current year introductory rates).
The typical 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company and its principal owner(s) enter into a one-year formalized lease agreement. Lease agreements provide reasonable flexibility in allowing the 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company to expand or retract within the Incubator, or to move to another facility at an appropriate time. A 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company may lease any available combination of office and/or production space within the Incubator that is in keeping with efficient overall space utilization practices. Space will be tailored to individual business needs (at the business owner’s expense) without interfering with building heating and ventilation systems.
5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company must agree to consult regularly with 5508 Exchange Staff Collaborists, who provide ongoing assistance to establish an individualized plan (Scorecard) for technical assistance and training. The total length of 5508 Exchange Incubator Program membership by a particular business is dependent on various factors, including the growth and maturity of the 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company itself. Average 5508 Exchange Incubator membership is 2-3 years, with a maximum of 3 years.
5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies are responsible for providing a Security Deposit equal to the first month’s rent of the most recent Lease or Lease Addendum. 5508 Incubator Program Companies must provide the following before occupying the space:
The terms and stipulations of this deposit are explained in the Lease Agreement.
Invoice, Billing & Payments
All services will be billed on your monthly invoice by the first week of the following month. The invoice will include all charges broken out by usage. Back-up copies of the charges are available for your records, upon request.
Payment of invoices (i.e., ent, membership fees and additional service charges) is due by the 1st of each month, with a grace period not to exceed the 5th of each month. Should the 5th of the month fall on a Saturday or Sunday, plans should be made to take care of your payent before that date, not after that date. All late payments are subject to a $75 late fee. All payments are to be made by credit card, debit card or money order. The money order shold be made payable to Tampa Hillsborough Action Plan, Inc. Please include your Suite number in the memo section of our money order. Submit you payment to Shared Services in Suite 7.
Should you have any questions concerning your invoice, please see the Executive Assistant to the CEO.
As an additional service to 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies, the 5508 Exchange Business Incubator provides the option for Companies to have their monthly rent automatically withdrawn from their business account at no additional charge. As a 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company you can opt-in to the ACH withdrawal system by filling out the ACH withdrawal form in Appendix D.
Incubator Program Point System
In order to be considered in good standing within the 5508 Exchange Incubator Program, a 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company will be asked to obtain a minimum of 100 points each year based on completing the basics of good business such as general business review, strategic planning and community involvement. Participation in formal and informal meetings with 5508 Exchange Incubator Staff Collaborists and our partner Coach Collaborists is a requirement of the 5508 Exchange Incubator Program and will supply a 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company with the basic 100 points. If a 5508 Exchange Program Company wishes to “earn more points” that company will merit additional benefits and recognition.
5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies may be graduated or choose to graduate from the 5508 Exchange Business Incubator Program if program management determines the company has met one or more of the following conditions:
The 5508 Program Staff Collaborists and outside Coach Collaborists provide ongoing assistance to 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies for technical help and training. Consultations range from quick answers on accounting, marketing, human resource, payroll issues to help in launching a new product or service. The 5508 Coworking & Collaboration Exchange is uniquely poised to offer a broad range of business assistance based on complimentary programs offered on and off site through our established list of partner Coach Collaborists from the community.
Mentor Collaborists may be members of THAP’s Board of Directors, City Council, the Chamber of Commerce, or any person knoeledgeable of business practices. A Mentor Collaborist or Mentor Collaborist group (2 or more) will assist an Incubator Collaborist so that they benefit to the maximum degree from services offered at the 5508 Exchange.
The 5508 Incubator Collaborist will meet with his/her Mentor Collaborist at least monthly. The 5508 Incubator Program Company should be prepared to share confidential and proprietory information necessary. Finally, the ento may join with the Collaborist at their request in periodic progress reviews. The mento should be seen as an advocate and advisor. Mentor will not be able to solve all problems, however, their time and expertise should prove beneficial towards the succeess of the
The 5508 Exchange has negotiated discounted services with an outside administrative service provider to help you meet your typing needs. 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies may obtain administrative services including but not limited to light secretarial, typing, word processing, and Notary services. Other services may be negotiated for a fee.
Premiere Office Services of Tampa
Barbara A. Singleton, Owner
Office: (813) 619-0437
School/Personal Resumes/Cover Letters
Contact THAP’s Shared Services Department for free Notary Public Services.
Incoming mail to 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies arrives from the US Postal Service in bulk. The 5508 Support Specialist will sort the mail Monday through Friday and distribute it to individual mailboxes in Suite 1, Building II.
5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies may use the following information for mail, stationery, telephone listing, etc.:
Your Company Name
5508 N 50th Street
Tampa, FL 33610
The mail shall be sorted by 5508 Exchange Staff Collaborist and placed in your mailbox. If you receive an oversized package, a note will be placed in your mailbox requesting you to pick up the package from Suite 7 during normal business hours.
Once a company has left the 5508 Exchange Incubator Program, their mail will be forwarded for two (2) months from their departure date free of charge. Because mail is delivered to this location unsorted, the USPS will not act on a forwarding notice from the exiting company and will not forward your mail from this address. Please be sure to notify all persons and agencies of your new mailing address. Anything received after the two-month period will be returned to sender, (with the exception of bulk mail, which will be discarded). If you wish for a forwarding service to continue past the two (2) month period there will be a $10.00 per month fee payable in advance.
UPS & FedEx Shipping – UPS & FedEx deliver daily to Shared Services office in Suite 7. This makes it easy for companies that do not have full-time office staff to receive packages. You may arrange for pickup of outgoing packages by contacting the carrier. All outgoing packages must be brought to Suite 7, the designated pickup site.
The following equipment is available to 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies:
5508 Incubator Program Companies can access Conference Room 1 (Suite 14) during designated black-out periods (Friday, Saturday, Sunday) as long as Suite 14 is available and booked within the 2-week period prior to the date of the 5508 Incubator Program Company’s planned event/meeting.
Please contact the Executive Assistant to the CEO to reserve time.
Membership in the exchange
Collaboration amongst peers is one of the most important benefits to being part of the 5508 Coworking & Collaboration Exchange.
Activities and Resources
New 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company Orientation is held on an individual basis.
Offered through our community partners, classes cover such topics as marketing, taxes, bookkeeping & financial statements, and the Ice House Training. Classes/workshops are available from Free to affordable rates offered by 5508 Exchange Incubator Program partner organizations and community Coach Collaborists who are experts in their field.
Become the Speaker & Leader You Want to Be - The downtown chapter of Toastmasters meets weekly here on the Incubator Campus. Toastmasters participants practice and learn skills by filling a meeting role, ranging from giving a prepared speech or an impromptu one to serving as timer, evaluator or grammarian. There is no instructor; instead, each speech and meeting is critiqued by a member in a positive manner, focusing on what was done right and what could be improved. Good communicators tend to be good leaders. 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies are welcome! Attend a meeting or two to observe and participate as much as you like, but membership is required for additional participation. The meeting is held every Tuesday at noon in the Suite 14. Meetings are open to the community.
Chamber of Commerce Membership
Businesses have two options for high-speed internet access: 1) Century Link DSL – This must be coordinated through OBJ (see process under phone system) 2) Broadband Access – Contact a member of the Incubator Program Management Team a. Prime T1 access for those with significant bandwidth needs. b. Shared T1 access for businesses with standard e-mail and internet access needs. For more details and costs, see Appendix B: 2013 Internet Access Policy.
Access to premises
Exterior storage fees will apply to any materials stored outside, including but not limited to loose items, storage sheds, equipment, and trailers. 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies must receive written permission from the 5508 Exchange to use exterior storage facilities, and will pay a monthly storage fee as described in the current year’s 5508 Incubator Pricing Policy (see Appendix A). In order to maintain a professional entrepreneurial environment, fines will be assessed for any items stored without permission. Vehicles or loose items stored longer than 14 days will be assessed a fine of 10 times the above rates, based on square footage occupied.
Care of Premises
5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies Maintenance and Janitorial Responsibilities:
5508 Exchange Maintenance and Custodial Staff Responsibilities:
Incubator Program Company covenants both for itself and its servants, agents, and employees, to observe and keep all necessary rules and regulations of the Building which affect said Premises and will at its own cost and expense make any and all necessary alterations or changes in the Premises which may be necessary because of any act of the Incubator Program Company, its servants, agents, and employees, in violation of any law, ordinance, rule or regulation of any city, state or government body.
Upon the failure of the Incubator Program Company to make or proceed to make, any such changes or alterations within thirty (30) days after being required to by any other rule, regulation or ordinance above referred to within ten (10) days of the receipt of said order or notice, then The 5508 Exchange may enter the Premises at its option and do and perform said alterations or make such changes at the cost and expense of the Incubator Program Company, which said expense shall be deemed as rent and added to the next monthly installment of rent then accruing and be collectable as such.
5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies who bring pets to the Premises must clean up all messes anywhere on the Property. A $50 fine per mess will be charged to an Incubator Program Company who does not pick-up after their pet. No pet shall be allowed on the Property without the presence of its owner.
PET MEDICAL INFORMATION: The owner of the pet agrees to maintain copies of all pertinent pet medical information on premises and agrees to the following minimum requirements:
GUIDELINES: The owner of the dog agrees to observe the following guidelines.
Trash and Recycling
Trash and recycling services are included in monthly rent. 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Companies shall place trash generated from normal business use in appropriate receptacles on the Property. Dumpsters are located on the southside of Buildings II and III in the parking lot. Incubator Program Companies with extraordinary trash needs can arrange additional pickups through the Coastal Bay Properties Maintenance Team and will be responsible for monetary charges pertaining to such service. The 5508 Exchange shall be responsible for maintenance of lighting systems in common and exterior spaces as well as maintenance of ballasts in all spaces on the Property. Light bulbs and changing thereof shall be the responsibility of the 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company. A 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company may request assistance from the Maintenance staff and will be billed for services except in extraordinary circumstances as determined by the 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Staff Collaborist.
The 5508 Exchange shall order uniform “cling” window signage for a 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company door(s) and window(s) to be paid for by the 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company. No other signage is permitted without express written consent of the 5508 Incubator Program Staff Collaborists, although permission shall not be unreasonably withheld. Please provide information and logo materials to the 5508 Incubator Program Manager.
Complaint forms are available in the THAP office, Suite 13 and in with the Executive Assistant to the CEO. Any complaint will be investigated and addressed in a timely manner.
discontinuation or exit
A 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company may be given a 30-day notice to leave the program and the premises for any one of the following reasons:
The 5508 Exchange and the 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company hereby agree that the preceding covenants are for the benefit of each 5508 Exchange Incubator Program Company and the operation of the entire 5508 Exchange Incubator Program. The 5508 Exchange is authorized to create these covenants and may change them at The 55508 Exchange’s option. The 5508 Exchange reserves the right to make such other and reasonable rules and regulations as in its judgment may from time to time be needed for the safety, care and cleanliness of the Premises, and for the preservation of good order therein. The 5508 Exchange may waive any one or more of these Rules and Regulations for the benefit of any particular Incubator Program Company or Incubator Program Companies, but no such waiver by The 5508 Exchange shall be construed as a waiver of such Rules and Regulations in favor of any other Incubator Program Company or Incubator Program Companies, nor prevent The 5508 Exchange thereafter enforcing any such Rules and Regulations against any or all of the Incubator Program Companies of the Premises. These Rules and Regulations are in addition to and shall not be construed to in any way modify, alter or amend, in whole or in part, the terms, covenants, agreements and conditions of any lease of the Premises
The 5508 ScoreCard
Incubator Program Companies will be involved in the 100 point system. This system is helpful if you are just starting your company or if you’re trying to expand and grow your business. The point system is a suggested checklist and a way to set goals for you and your organization. The Business Incubator, the 5508 Community, Entrepreneurs and others in your industry have a lot to offer. The point system is a tool you can use to organize and manage those business opportunities. In order to be considered in good standing within the 5508 Business Incubator Program, an Incubator Program Company must obtain the minimum requirement of 100 points each year. All items listed on the next two pages are opportunities to achieve the 100 point per year minimum. Only items listed with an asterisk (*) are required in order to comply with Incubator Program requirements. If an Incubator Program Company completes all items with an asterisk (*) they will obtain 85 to 90 points. An Incubator Program Company will need to achieve 10 to 15 points outside of the required items in order to achieve 100 points. If an Incubator Program Company achieves more than the 100 point minimum they will be rewarded by the Incubator Program Management Team. Annual recognition will be held for top performing companies. Bronze: 150 to 274 points Silver: 275 to 399 points Gold: 400+ points Incubator Program Companies should keep track of things they have done for their business each year. At the end of the year, Incubator Program Managers will compare the scores of Incubator Program Companies and tally the total points.
20. Search Engine Optimization (HCC)
21. Social Media (HCC)
22. Human Resources (HCC)
23. Customer Service (HCC)
24. Growing Your Business (HCC)
25. Essentials of Time Management (HCC)
26. Protecting Your Practice (HCC)
27. Time Management (BB)
28. File Organization (BB)
29. Goal Setting (BB)
30. Customer Service (BB)
31. Cash Flow 101 (BB)