New Year, New Home for Expanding Business Incubator


SARASOTA, FLORIDA, January 16th 2017 – The Sarasota business incubator HuB is moving this early 2017 to a more central location downtown, a move geared at further cultivating creative entrepreneurship in the region.

HuB’s new headquarters is set at the historic Palm Tower at the corner of Main Street and Palm Avenue. It will occupy one floor of the seven-story building, with plans for additional coworker space in order to attract more tech companies.

The Palm Tower, built in the early 1920s and dubbed as “Sarasota’s First Skyscraper,” will be extensively renovated and renamed as the HuB following the business incubator’s relocation to the building. Known as Hotel Sarasota in its heydays, this historic structure was one of the centers of the city’s social life till the hotel’s closure in 1971.

Sarasota Condo Neighbors

New Year, New Home for Expanding Business Incubator

After a meticulous makeover, it reopened as the Palm Tower executive office building in 1974. Henceforth, Sarasota condos for sale were constructed in its neighborhood: Bay Plaza next block on Gulfstream Avenue in 1982 and 1350 Main Street across Palm Tower in 2007.

HuB started out more than seven years ago from a small warehouse in the Rosemary District. In 2012, it moved to 1680 Fruitville Road east of downtown at the former Century Bank building where it got anchor space as its main tenant.

Former Home Rebranded

With HuB transferring downtown, its former Fruitville building home is now being renamed as “BOLD | Live, Work, Play.” This rebranding is aligned with BOLD Lofts, a mixed-use development slated to open near this building in early 2018.

This new development is planned for 97 apartment units. The new and existing BOLD structures will both feature private offices, rentals for common work areas and various facilities designed for freelancers and startups.

Their owner, local developer Jesse Biter, plans to formally launch his own business incubator and venture fund at BOLD late this year. Biter emphasized though that his project will be somewhat different from HuB, with his focus more on education, networking and growth resources.

Connectivity Grows Further

HuB, for its part, pointed out that its downtown transfer opens a new chapter for the business incubator. The concept will be different when it moves to its 5,000-square-foot space at Palm Tower where there are other floors available for tech companies. HuB though will remain focused on building an innovation economy and providing a place for people connectivity.

The HuB incubator has hosted over 50 start-up businesses and more than 150 entrepreneurs, making it one of Florida’s largest co-worker spaces. Those it has housed include, an artificial intelligence platform for real estate, and the virtual reality healthcare venture BioLucid which ShareCare acquired recently.

Ties Forged in Manatee

In 2015, HuB also partnered with four other organizations for the establishment of the Manatee-based Suncoast Center for Entrepreneurship. Opened in November that year, this center helps business startups through education, development, and mentoring of aspiring entrepreneurs.

HuB’s partners in this center include the Manatee Chamber of Commerce, Inspiration Academy in Bradenton, Spark Growth, also a business incubator, and Cincinnati Christian University.