Business Enterprise Center (BEC)

Business Accelerator (BEC)

BEC provides entrepreneurs affordable work space and supportive services to increase their chances for business success.  Small business owners benefit from training and networking opportunities as well as learning from other small business owners. And with significantly below-market rent, entrepreneurs can invest money in their business rather than overhead.

What BEC Offers

Targeted Industries 
Small businesses in the following industries are eligible:

  • Industries Eligible for the MN Angel Tax Credit program, including but not limited to biotechnology, clean technology, IT, electronics, manufacturing technology, consumer product creation, etc.
  • Production services industries (e.g. CNC machining or support)
  • Industries with the potential of creating high quality job growth

Click here for information on the application process and to see additional business requirements.


What is a business accelerator?

Business accelerators and incubators provide targeted support services and resources for entrepreneurs, and also create a community that fosters formal and informal networking, knowledge-sharing, and collaboration.

Business accelerators and business incubators have become recognized nation-wide as an effective means to help small businesses succeed.  According to the National Business Incubation Association (NBIA), "Business incubators generate up to 20 times more jobs than any other Federally funded community infrastructure project--at a fraction of the cost."

Click here for more information on business incubation.

What is the difference between a business accelerator and a business incubator?

The term business accelerator is often used interchangeably with business incubator. While business incubators nurture the development of entrepreneurial companies during the start-up period, our business accelerator will also be open to small established companies that are looking to accelerate their growth. 

Are retail businesses eligible?

The accelerator space is not intended for retail uses. However, the City is happy to assist retailers in locating available space within Cottage Grove for retail use. 

Who decides who gets into the accelerator?

BEC has a management company and an Advisory Board that determine if potential tenants meet the required criteria.

How long does a business stay in the accelerator?

This can vary. However, the goal is that businesses will graduate within three years or less.