Creative HQ – A resident's prespective…

There seems to be some mis-understanding about Creative HQ offers the residents.

Here are 10 things about Creative HQ from a resident’s prespective.

Creative HQ (CHQ) provides:

  1. Subsidised Office space – ie. Internet, Fax, phone systems, desks etc.
  2. Discounted rates for key services – Accountants, Lawyers, Employment laywer, business coaches, and media training etc.
  3. Mentoring – Every company has a couple of mentors who work with the companies every month to help them accelerator their growth. They get at least 3 hours of mentoring time every month for free. The list of mentor includes previous CEO’s of EDS and IBM etc. They have a wealth of experience their skills covers a wide range of knowledge.
  4. Network OpporunitiesCHQ has plenty of functions. There is a lot of cross pollination between various business people, groups and associations in Wellington.
  5. Access to VC funds – We have access to VC funding networks. Most companies at Creative HQ are at a pre-VC stage.
  6. Knowledge share
    * We have monthly seminars on a variety of topics eg. Funding, employment law, running accounts, tax, HR, company structure.
    * Learning from other companies inside the incubator about the in’s and out’s of running a start-up company.
  7. Colloboration – Many companies work together on projects. Eg. LetUseIt and ProjectX are running the CreativeHQ “Summer of Code” for benefit of CHQ, residents and CHQ Alumni. I have met several CEO’s that I am sure that I will together on future ideas.
  8. Free stuff – We get the opportunities to participate in seminars and training that benefit the CEO, and the companies involved.
  9. Kudos – Getting into CHQ requires a bit of effort that prove the viability of the business idea and the level of commitment of the people. This helps open doors for those companies as they have been “qualified” by CHQ. I can personally say this kudos has helped us with PR and our grant applications.
  10. Social side – Its great to have a support network of people who understand the trials and tribulations of running a company. We have a tight knit bunch of companies in here. We have a great time in our journey together in creating our businesses. ( Out of the companies that have graduated over the last 2 years, over 6 of companies that have moved into new premises together)

The focus of Creative HQ is to help people take a smart idea and turn into reality.

IMHO I would thoroughly recommend that any person who has an idea, to come and talk to the people at Creative HQ or (other incubators in NZ). For one, its good practice to have smart people asking the right questions about your business ideas.

In our case, we had difficultly explaining our idea, and this process really helped us to define our pitch.

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