Nearwest  News
In This Issue
Open House Success
Food Forward
Insuran. Lunch & Learn
Membership Directory
Member Spotlight
Holiday Party
Training for Women
Need Help Hiring?
Development Opps
New Incubator Co's.
Quick Links
Follow Us
                 October 2015      
ICNC Incubator Open House Success!
Last month for the first time, ICNC had an incubator open house. Thirty-three businesses within our four buildings opened their doors to showcase their products and services. Over 200 guests had the opportunity to visit the businesses as well go on one of the guided tours. Afterwards, guests were able to network and socialize over drinks and food.

We would like to thank everyone who attended as well as Old Towne Abbey for providing the beer, All Natural Chicago for the barbecue, Crockett Cookies for the Chicago lunchroom style cookies and the businesses in the incubator for their participation.
Food Forward: Tools and Trends to help you Grow Your Business
Join us for a special food and beverage presentation and networking event featuring representatives from the Specialty Food Association (SFA). Organizers of North America's largest food trade show, The Fancy Food Show, the SFA works to "create, connect, support, and share the extraordinary experience of specialty food with the world." 

SFA's Vice President of Government and Industry Relations, Ron Tanner, will be flying in from New York to help budding and established Chicago food entrepreneurs learn about the wide range of resources and tools available to them through the SFA network. Learn about new industry trends and marketing strategies, network with fellow food entrepreneurs, and discover how you can get your product featured at the bi-annual Fancy Food Show. 

Thursday, November 12
Time: 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Location: ICNC - 320 N. Damen Ave.

Lunch and Learn: Taking the Mystery Out of Business Insurance
The world of business insurance involves many aspects of risk, not to mention a never ending supply of scenario's. Learn how to identify insurance risks in the business world and dodge potential "bullets" by protecting your business. Afterwards, she will be available for one-on-one consultations if you have questions or want to bring your existing policy for review. Appointments are limited and are available on a first-come first-served basis. 

Our speaker, Anna Maria-Viti-Welch of Guy Viti Insurance has over 25 years of experience with sales, business development and management in the business insurance industry.

Wednesday, November 18
Time: 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM (lunch and seminar)
12:30 PM - 3:00 PM (one-on-one consultation)
Location: ICNC - 320 N. Damen Ave.
Register hereBring your brown bag lunch.
To reserve a one-on-one appointment, email Dionne Moore at
New Online Member Directory!
ICNC has revamped its online member directory! Businesses can search an extensive list of member companies on ICNC's website to find products and services to fit your company's needs. Directory profiles feature business descriptions, product photos, and member-to-member deals. If you are a member who would like to set up your directory profile to market your business, please refer to the email sent to you directly for step-by-step directions. For questions, contact Hannah Jones at
Member Spotlight: Crockett Cookies
Cheryl Crockett of Crockett Cookies has been making Chicago lunchroom style butter cookies for over 10 years now. After receiving multiple requests for cookies from family and friends for events and family functions, Cheryl knew she had something special on her hands. She started in a shared kitchen, but as her orders grew, so did her need for a larger space. After moving into the incubator, she invested in a kitchen build-out of her raw space to include ovens, sinks, refrigeration, ventilation, and more.

She has recently introduced a new product, peanut butter cookies. Crockett Cookies are currently available in over 100 Walgreen's and several Whole Foods Chicago locations. Cheryl was also recently featured in Crain's Chicago BusinessClick here to read more about her story. Crockett
Save-the-Date: December 10
ICNC Holiday Party
Join us for our annual holiday celebration at the Garfield Park Conservatory! Meet your fellow ICNC members and enjoy food, drinks, and holiday cheer.
Thursday, December 10
Time: 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM
Location: Garfield Park Conservatory - 300 N. Central Park Ave.
EMT Training for Women
ICNC is pleased to announce that recruitment has opened for our 2016 Emergency Medical Technician training course. The Eleanor Network at Chicago Foundation for Women funds this seven-month program that provides opportunities for low-income working women that lead to living-wage jobs with benefits and clear pathways for career advancement. To learn more and to apply, click here.
Do You Need Help Hiring?
As a small business owner managing your day-to-day operations, you may not have the time to post an ad, screen resumes, or call people in for interviews. ICNC can do this for you and more. For more information, contact Nancy Kramer at
Professional Development Opportunities      
10,000 Small BusinessesGoldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses is a no-cost program that provides business owners with practical business education, a supportive network of advisors and peers, and access to capital. Through the program, owners will receive the tools and support to develop a customized plan to grow their business. The application deadline for Cohort 14 is October 17.  The cohort begins January 8, 2016 and ends April 16, 2014. To learn more email or call 312-553-5912. ProDevOp

Business Workshops: The Department of Business Affairs & Consumer Protection (BACP) offers workshops every Wednesday and Friday. Workshops vary each month and are conducted by City Officials, experts, and partner business organizations. All workshops are free and open to the public. To view the business workshop calendar, click here.

CASE: Chicago Anchors for a Strong Economy: CASE helps small businesses sell to large institutions, such as universities, cultural institutions, hospitals, government and businesses. For more information about CASE or to apply, click here.
Welcome New ICNC Incubator Companies
Suki & Solaine - Producers of contemporary clothing for women. Unique prints, artwork, and trims sourced from around the world along with modern dyeing and hand painting techniques form the basis of the collection. You can find Suki + Solaine clothing online and in independent boutiques across the US.

The Tamale Spaceship - Creators of traditional Mexican dishes that are turned into tamales. In addition to tamales, they also offer tacos, soups, and desserts. They are also the city's longest running food truck. You can catch their food truck at various locations or stop by the Tamale Station.
ICNC Incubator Space Available      
Enjoy competitive rent, a thriving entrepreneurial environment, and immediate access to ICNC's services. Click here to view more available spaces.Space
For more info call 312-421-3941 or email