Manchester incubator tries a new tack

The state’s largest business incubator Hampshire is rebranding itself in an effort that it says will foster more entrepreneurial growth in the state.The Amoskeag Business Incubator, launched in 1997 as a collaboration between the city of Manchester and Southern New Hampshire University, has officially relaunched as abi Innovation Hub.Designed to nurture high-growth startups, the relaunch is an effort to attract innovative people, businesses and jobs to the state. As part of its efforts, the independent, not-for-profit incubator has hired an entrepreneur-in-residence and has expanded its board of directors.”These are exciting times for people with big ideas, and the new abi will literally be a hub for all things startup,” said Jamie Coughlin, a Princeton University graduate who was hired in October as the entrepreneur-in-residence and vice president of strategic initiatives.”In recent years, there has been an influx of new innovation centers, business mentor programs, next generation incubators, angel and venture capital portfolios forming and seeing great success,” said Coughlin. “We recognize that we’ve been behind the times a bit and that many of these organizations have thrived in larger cities, but our new leadership and board is dedicated to harnessing and catapulting innovation in our region.”Griffin York & Krause, the Manchester-based marketing and ad agency, provided the branding overhaul free of charge to the incubator. In addition, abi’s board of directors has increased from six to 10 members, a move that was necessary to “evolve and shift our positioning to return to prominence,” said Board Chair Pete Lachance. — KATHLEEN CALLAHAN/NEW HAMPSHIRE BUSINESS REVIEW

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