State Incubators

Future State-Funded Incubation Space

Beyond an Incubator Private & Public Labs

Corrections or additions?

These articles by Barbara Fox were prepared for the

April 25, 2001 edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Incubator Graduate: Case Study

Mark M. Feffer, president of Tramp Steamer Media, can

be considered a poster child for business incubators. He started an

interactive publishing business three years ago and graduated from

the Trenton Business and Technology Center with five full-time and

several part-time employees to 1,600 square feet on West State Street

in Trenton (

"Starting a business can be scary, and being in a space where

there are experienced business people to talk to and get advice from

can make a huge difference," says Feffer. "One of the most

important steps we took in our growth was moving from home offices

to real offices. I don’t think we could have made that transition

as well as we did if the incubator hadn’t been available."

Getting companies to the "graduation point," the point at

which they are financially viable and can rent a freestanding office,

is indeed the mission of an incubator. National statistics show that,

over the years, one-third of an incubator’s clients graduate each

year, and 87 percent of them are still in business now (

This compares to the record of 50 to 80 percent of businesses that

fail in the first year. The U.S. Small Business Administration Office

of Advocacy reports that only 66 percent of businesses remain open

at least two years (

The business incubator concept in New Jersey started in the 1980s,

flourished in the 1990s, and now the state Commission on Science and

Technology is helped to fund the creation of seven more facilities.

The state is trying to help young, small technology companies, says

John Tesoriero, executive director of the NJCST, because these


are making the great discoveries that might spur them to be major


"New Jersey supports a network of seven technology business


says Tesoriero. "These innovative and entrepreneurial enclaves

are administered through New Jersey’s academic sector and currently

house more than 100 businesses. They provide start-up and small firms

with critical business assistance in addition to low-cost office,

light manufacturing and/or laboratory." Support is funded at


annually, but plans are in the works to expand the network.

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State Incubators

Trenton Business and Technology Center Inc., 36

South Broad Street, Trenton 08608-2102. Al Spiewak, director.


fax, 609-396-8603.

The incubator is a strong place for new companies to

get started," says Al Spiewak. "I have a lot of experience

getting businesses underway through teaching the theory and being

an entrepreneur. If they came here for that alone, new businesses

would be able to find success." In 13,000 square feet he has 10

tenants and room for three to eight more. Among the "perks"

is use of a T-1 line.

Spiewak’s great grandfather started a still-successful outerwear


company on Long Island, and he has had a variety of his own


experiences. A philosophy major at University of Pennsylvania, Class

of ’70, he has an MBA from Cornell and a law degree from Union


He worked for an intellectual property firm in Manhattan, as in-house

lawyer for J&R Music World and then Paramount, and had a security

business in Manhattan. While he and his wife were opening the


Corner schools in Plainsboro, he taught entrepreneurship at Fordham,

computers at Mercer County College, and marketing in the noncredit

program at MCCC. He was asked to take over the director’s job at the

Trenton incubator six months ago.

"We’ve addressed the tenants’ concerns about maintenance and


requirements," says Spiewak. The incubator’s advisory board


such luminaries as Jim Carnes, CEO of Sarnoff Corporation; Lewis D.

Meixler of Princeton Plasma Physic Laboratories; Joe Montemarano of

the POEM center at Princeton University; Richard Woodbridge,


property attorney; and Catherine Shrope-Mok of Third Federal Savings.

Montemarano also sits on the board of directors, which also includes

Gregory Olson, founder of Sensors Unlimited, and Feffer.

Tenants include Absolute Computer Training Center, computer training

and consulting (609-394-2100); Bioderm Technologies, bio-medical


(609-656-0784); Digital Spectrum, audio CD masters and duplicating

(609-396-6000); Ecosol Solar Tech, solar energy cells (656-7777);

Empyrean Management Group, online recruitment strategies


Inforest Communications, website design (888-706-1380); Motility


Corp., bio-medical research (917-882-6674); Sensing Strategies, high

tech quality control consulting (609-394-9901); and Trenton Arts


fostering the arts in Trenton (609-965-8155).

Burlington County College High Technology Small


Incubator, 900 Briggs Road, Mount Laurel 08054. Frank S. Keith,

manager. 856-222-9311, ext. 7906; fax, 856-439-0154. Home page: Has two dozen permanent tenants and is 100 percent

full. A second section is under construction.

NJIT Enterprise Development Center, 240 Martin

Luther King Boulevard, Newark 07102. Stash Lisowski, director.


fax, 973-643-5839. Home page: A


small business incubator.

Picatinny Innovation Center, 3159 Schrader Road,

Dover 07801. Patricia Milley, executive director. 973-442-6400; fax,

973-442-6492. Incubator for technology firms that can have access

to federal laboratories, personnel, and critical technology.

Stevens Technology Ventures Business Incubator,

Castle Point on Hudson, Hoboken 07030. Gina M. Boesch. 201-216-5622;

fax, 201-216-8044.

Technology Enterprise Development Center, 105 Lock

Street, Fourth Floor, Newark 07102. Lou Gaburo, director.


fax, 973-643-4502.

Technology Help Desk & Incubator (NJSBDC), 100

Jersey Avenue, Suite D-1, New Brunswick 08901. Randy Harmon, director.

800-432-1832; fax, 732-545-0120. Home page:

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Future State-Funded Incubation Space

Community Options Enterprises, Inc. Morristown. A


non-profit organization committed to open a first-of-its-kind


small business incubator for entrepreneurs with and without


in Morristown, focusing on new products, processes and services


for the handicapped and disability market.

Burlington County College/Burlington High Technology Incubator

II, Mt. Laurel . The Burlington County College was awarded funding

to build a new, one-story, 20,000-foot Life Sciences incubator on

campus for about 14 entrepreneurs.

Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU), Madison: FDU was

awarded funding for a new internet-related incubator for student and

non-student entrepreneurs, "Launch Central," a 6,500


one-story building adjacent to the Rothman Institute of


Studies on the Florham Park Madison campus.

NJIT / Enterprise Development Center (EDC) III, Newark:

NJIT/EDC was awarded funding to begin construction of new 80,000


five-story incubator, EDC III, housing up to 50 technology start-up

companies, creating approximately 240 new jobs in the short term.

nVention, c/o Sarnoff Corporation, CN 5300, Princeton

08543. 609-734-2000. Norman Winarsky, president.

A wholly-owned for-profit Sarnoff subsidiary for launching


companies. Winarsky and his team will develop ventures that use the

expertise and technology of all Sarnoff units, particularly in these

areas: multimedia and broadband, Internet connected devices and


and smart services that provide customized responses to individual

user needs (U.S. 1, January 24). nVention targets venture


that have $1 billion market capitalization potential.

Commercialization Center, Technology Center of New Jersey,

671 Route 1 South . This 20,000-foot research facility is designed

for emerging R&D companies in biosciences, micro electronics, advanced

materials, and communications technologies. The Commercialization

Center offers common services (autoclave, copy/fax, Internet access)

and 17 wet labs for incubator use, all with fume hoods, benches, and

cabinetry. It is being leased by CB Richard Ellis (732-767-6400).

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Beyond an Incubator Private & Public Labs

Technology Centre of New Jersey, 671 Route 1 South,

c/o NJEDA, CM 990, Trenton 08625. Michael B. Francois, real estate

development. 609-292-1800; fax, 609-292-5722. Laboratory and


facilities for emerging technology companies.

Under construction now is Technology Centre of New Jersey III, a


foot single-story precast building with ribbon glass. The smallest

lab space will be 5,800 square feet, and the state landlord (the New

Jersey Economic Development Authority, will kick in $100 per square

foot for tenant improvements. Another space now available is the


26,000 square foot analytical lab just vacated by Johnson & Johnson’s

Advanced Care. Merial, Cambrex, and Celgro are among the tenants in

this complex.

Princeton Corporate Plaza, 7 Deer Park Drive,


Corporate Plaza, Monmouth Junction 08852. Harold Kent AIA, owner.

732-329-3655; fax, 732-329-9697. As leases of non-tech companies


here, they are being replaced by high tech electronics and biotech


Straube Center LLC, F-106 West Franklin Avenue,

Pennington 08534. Winn Thompson. 609-737-3322; fax, 609-737-6829.

Home page: Total business services for companies

to design, develop, produce, market, and export products and services.

Here’s another poster child to be proud of: One of the New


incubator’s poster children, Henry Wojtunik of Anacom Systems,

a wireless communication firm (, went from


to $5 million (thanks to the downturn in the Korean economy) and sold

the company for considerably more than $5 million.

"I knew Henry would hit sudden exponential growth, so we put


an advisory committee from different disciplines," says Randy

Harmon, the incubator’s director. "These folks were instrumental

in helping build Henry build into a more mature company, ready for

the breakthrough. We also helped him to get his intellectual property

patented, and when the patent came through it kicked up the valuation

another million dollars." Wojtunik expanded twice and is now in


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