Wanted: Long-Term, Creative, Innovative Business Plans

Spaceworks Tacoma is looking for individuals or groups with long-term, creative/innovative business plans. The projects can be for-profit or non-profit, but they should in some way benefit the Tacoma community.

The Spaceworks Creative Enterprise Program offers operating spaces for local businesses and nonprofits, along with assistance in developing a thriving business.

Creative Enterprise provides the opportunity to test new ideas, products and services in a low-cost temporary space for up to six months to artists, designers, crafters, consultants, organizations, community groups and other fledgling creative entrepreneurs (non-profit or for-profit). But it’s not just about space, Spaceworks’ Creative Enterprise Program provides relevant and meaningful business training and peer-to-peer support to the participants to systematically grow Tacoma’s creative class and generate destination quality activity that will engage and transform our community. 

The Creative Enterprise program is a different from Spaceworks' Artscapes program, which offers artists a temporary display space and stipend to install works of art in storefront windows, display cases, and other publicly viewable spots around Tacoma. Creative Enterprises are long-term projects looking for resources to test an idea or otherwise get off the ground. They typically hold regular business hours, and are open to the public in the low-cost vacant spaces provided by Spaceworks.

Past examples of Creative Enterprises you may or may not be familiar with include retail spaces like Do the Extraordinary and Tinkertopia; artistic endeavors including photographers, letter press artists, pottery and dance studios, and more; as well as individual and co-working spaces for creative businesses.

Spaceworks provides a 21-hour business training program, expert consultation, signage, and marketing assistance. The review process is competitive, with all applicants evaluated based on a list of criteria.

  • Quality of product or service or artwork as exhibited in the work sample
  • Feasibility of the business
  • Ability to execute proposal
  • Ingenuity and strength of concept/proposal
  • Benefit to the community and appropriateness for the public realm
  • Readiness of the business to be placed in a space
  • Potential that the business will stabilize
  • Ability to create a destination-quality business or to engage the community including passers-by (if applicable)

If you're interested, read more here, and take the opportunity to talk to program manager Heather Joy at an event coming up this Saturday at Destiny City Comics (next to King's Books). Find applications (due by November 24) on the Spaceworks website.

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