Our Managing Partner, Kjell Andreassen, was recently interviewed for the popular blog www.GrowSouthwest.com . See the entire interview below.
By: Lynette Carrington
JumpStartBiz is based in Fountain Hills and is a business accelerator that helps develop jobs and additional economic growth in and around the Fountain Hills area. When a business is getting started, there are many areas in which the owners can use assistance. Kjell Andreassen is one of the founders of JumpStartBiz and originally hails from Norway. He was educated in London and wound up in the MBA program at ASU. “For the most part, I’ve spent the last 30 years in Arizona,” Andreassen said.
Kjell Andreassen of JumpStartBiz
JumpStartBiz was launched a little over a year ago in Fountain Hills as a pilot program. “It’s a public & private partnership so it is sponsored and supported by the Town of the Fountain Hills as well as some prominent businesses there,” Andreassen said. “The objective is to have a semi-virtual incubator and accelerator that are aimed at developing jobs and economic growth in the southwest and in the surrounding areas.” JumpStartBiz also features a convenient collaborative workspace facility provided by Meridian Bank that boasts nearly 2,000 square feet. This is ideal for young businesses and entrepreneurs that need work and meeting space. “We have a place there where we do the mentoring and work with the clients,” Andreassen noted.
Six businesses were put through the JumpStartBiz program during the first year and two have continued on into the second year of the program. “We’ve proven the concept and it has been working quite well. The town has renewed its support of the program and we have a couple new sponsors that have joined,” Andreassen said. For the 2014 year, there are eight businesses that are participating. It’s not specifically focused on any particular kind of industry, but JumpStartBiz looks for businesses that are generating revenue, but still considered start-ups.
JumpStartBiz features a five point, structured program. They validate the product and then the business itself within the market space, scale it to fit the market, then it is implemented and made to be financially viable. Along the way, Andreassen and company work to validate strong business ideas and accountability. “This is more of a structured program and there is a lot of accountability in it,” Andreassen said. The budding business is developed and milestones are set and measured during regular meetings. “We’re focused on the step-by-step approach.”
“We’re getting ready to launch JumpStartBiz Tempe. We can envision little hubs of JumpStartBiz in the valley,” Andreassen said. “They get experienced advisors to help them and guide them along the way to increase the likelihood of success at a cost they can afford, which is a big part of the concept.”
Arizona Business Advisors Team at JumpStartBiz
Andreassen also has another business in which he is involved. “We have a consultancy called Acceler8. We’re in our ninth year now. It’s a consultancy focused on the small business owner,” Andreassen said. The company helps to eliminate some of the common traps and pitfalls that small business owners will often encounter, but may not know to avoid. Tax and accounting services specifically geared towards those small business owners is also part of their service. The staff of Acceler8 is made up of CPAs and business advisors and operates as the parent entity to JumpStartBiz. “I started the consultancy that was focusing on helping other business owners and entrepreneurs avoid some of the traps I had stepped into during my long career,” Andreassen said. “We’re a group of four business advisors now that operate as Arizona Business Advisors that is the entity that Acceler8 is a partner in and the entity that operates JumpStartBiz.
JumpStartBiz focuses on moving businesses to their next level of growth and profitability and is a public & private partnership between Brokers Alliance, Meridian Bank and the Town of Fountain Hills. The incubator is managed by Arizona Business Advisors LLC and operated under the name JumpStartBiz; it serves Fountain Hills, Scottsdale and surrounding areas. For additional information, visit www.azbizadvisors.com/jumpstartbiz/.
See the original post at http://www.growsouthwest.com/jumpstartbiz-gives-start-up-businesses-and-entrepreneurs-the-leg-up/