San Antonio’s Newest Business Incubator Emerge and Rise Teaches Small Businesses How to Succeed

By Guest Author
A shop's open for business sign, photo by Mike Petrucci on Unsplash

Lina Rugova is the founder of the nonprofit Emerge and Rise business incubator, while John Knotts is the co-founder. Their guest post shares about Emerge and Rise incubator resources available for small business owners.

New businesses are the economy’s lifeblood, but starting one can be difficult for entrepreneurs who have big ideas but little experience or funding. For starters, service-based businesses are not the same as product-oriented businesses and require different strategic thinking. A service-based business is one that provides an intangible product performed by a team or an individual.

To support these small business owners, San Antonio’s Emerge and Rise nonprofit small business incubator offers training in business skills, marketing, legal issues, and accounting to give them the tools they need to succeed. We are San Antonio’s newest small business incubator and accelerator led by Lina G. Rugova of Atlas Start, John Knotts from Crosscutter Enterprises, and partnered with Luis Escobar from VenturePoint coworking.

We have helped over 300 small businesses since launching in 2010 with our focus on promoting service-based business growth across San Antonio.  As a 501c3 (pending) nonprofit, we provide free and low-cost training and resources to service-based entrepreneurs, especially underrepresented business communities of veterans, minorities, immigrants, women, and ex-felons.

Many small businesses start a company but may not be entirely ready to grow their company into a successful enterprise. A little extra guidance or an investment into their idea goes a long way to ensuring that success. We’ve created multiple programs that help people with ideas to figure out if their idea is viable or if there is a more efficient way of doing things.

At Emerge and Rise, we energize the service-based businesses that serve as the bedrock of San Antonio.  Service-based companies, like lawn care, vehicle and home maintenance, home and office cleaning, the trades, and professional services are inherently crucial to the entrepreneurial fabric of San Antonio and South Texas. These small businesses create most of the new jobs in America. 

Yet, the Small Business Administration reported in 2019 how twenty percent of business startups typically fail in the first year. About half succumb to business failure within five years. By year 10, only about 33% survive.

We want every business owner in San Antonio to be successful in their entrepreneurial journey.

One of the most effective ways for a small business to succeed is by partnering with an incubator. A business incubator is a place where entrepreneurs can work on their ideas without starting up an entire business. 

Our partnership with Venture Point, a co-working space, provides incubator participants desk space, networking opportunities, workshops, access to various resources, and equipment in exchange for small fees. The San Antonio community gets access to expertise and resources that would be too expensive for one person to leverage on their own. Plus, our incubator program is designed to fit the busy schedules of business owners or people with full-time jobs looking to start a new business.

Emerge and Rise plans to offer local seminars information on how to start or grow a small company that’s targeted at aspiring entrepreneurs. Our webinars will connect entrepreneurs with mentors from the community. We will also work with you to link up with mentors who can share keen insights into how veteran entrepreneurs navigate challenges in building companies. Our program of networking events can help you join and build upon our community of other aspiring professionals interested in starting ventures.

Emerge and Rise is a mission-driven small business incubator dedicated to encouraging the prosperity of economically challenged entrepreneurs. Along with our new partner and generous sponsor VenturePoint, we strive to give founders across San Antonio the education and networking aspiring business owners need to succeed. Get started on your journey to prosperity by connecting with one of us

The featured photo is of a shop’s open for business sign, photo by Mike Petrucci on Unsplash.


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