Access Mentorship and Entrepreneurial assistance to launch your business!
At the Allan P. Kirby Center for Free Enterprise and Entrepreneurship, clients can create a foundation for their entrepreneurial ideas to come to life. For more information, see the categories below as well as some client success stories. Also check out our center's flyer at the bottom of the page!
How to be Considered:
By filling out our eCenter signup form, you are submitting an application to be considered. This form can be found on our homepage by clicking on the logo at the bottom of the page content. Once the process is complete, you will be sent a confirmation email from the system. If you do not receive an email please contact the center via the information posted on our staff page.
What We Offer:
The APKCFEE offers various services of mentoring in the areas of business development, marketing development, intellectual property management, financial services, product/process development services, and industry and community outreach. For a more detailed listing of these mentorship services, please go to our services offered page.
The APKCFEE mentorship program provides opportunities and a solid foundation for entrepreneurs, both new and existing to be guided and assisted. This mentorship from business professionals aids in aspects needed for a client's business to thrive. With over 30 mentors, the center strives to give clients a high quality foundation in entrepreneurship.
Partners and Affiliations:
- Wilkes-Barre Connect
- CAN BE & CAN DO, Inc.
- Ben Franklin Technology Partners
- Associations of University Technology Managers
- Ben Franklin Technology Partners Incubator Network
- Small Business Development Center at Wilkes University
- Family Business Alliance
- The Institute for Public Policy and Economic Development
- Great Wilkes-Barre Chamber of Commerce
- Luzerne County Keystone Innovation Zone
- International Business Incubator Association
- Pennsylvania Angel Network
- Northeast Pennsylvania Industrial Resource Center
Client Success Stories
Since 2015, the APKCFEE has been mentoring the founder of Fader Plugs LLC, Blaise Delfino, and assisted in forming the company's business model and initial business plan. Fader Plugs has developed a patent-pending design for the first mechanical and adjustable earplug that allows users to alter the amount of sound entering without removing the device from their ears. Fader Plugs obtained a partnership with a global leader in hearing healthcare, came in second place at the 2015 TecBRIDGE Entrepreneurship Institute, was awarded a $10,000 prize for first place in the 2016 Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education's Business Plan Competition, and (after another year of mentoring by the APKCFEE) won first place in the 2017 TecBRIDGE Business Plan Competition, receiving another $10,000 prize.Fader Plugs is currently in the end-phase of product development and expects to release the product in the fourth quarter of 2017 and launched their Kickstarter campaign on November 9, 2017.
XenoWax by Xenoil creates a new, sustainable way for prototyping in subtractive manufacturing. The company wanted to create new methods for the world of manufacturing to close the loop on material consumption and waste production. Xenoil LLC has produced a machinable wax out of recycled wax and plastics (such as those from used shopping bags) that can be used by professional machine shops, lost wax casting facilities, prototype development companies/teams, and home machinists. This will allow the common products that are used and wasted in everyday activities to have their lifecycles prolonged, while preventing them from building up in landfills. The wax they've created is simple to use, as you can melt it down easily so it can be poured into any shape or size mold. Previously used wax, or clean scraps, can then be re-melted to use for new products, eliminating the majority of waste associated with generating these items, therefore making it a beneficial product for home machinists, as well as professional machine shops.The black-colored wax has a clean, sleek, professional finish that can be used as an alternative for the current, and much more expensive, standard for rapid prototyping. Xenoil LLC was a finalist in the 2017 TecBRIDGE Business Plan Competition and will be continuing to develop their business in the APKCFEE Business Incubator.
The father and son team of Alfred and Troy Everetts developed a new product category within the cannabis industry by creating high-quality, lab-tested cannabidiol (CBD) hemp infused Italian ice in three popular flavors (cherry, mango, and lemon). Studies suggest that this active ingredient may help with many ailments, potentially providing relief from pain and other issues. Troy Everetts, as a senior entrepreneurial major at Wilkes University, was provided a significant number of services by the Allan P. Kirby Center for Free Enterprise and Entrepreneurship (APKCFEE) to include: Refinement of the Company's strategic business plan, referral to the Wilkes University SBDC, referrals to experienced attorneys who provided pro-bono services to counsel the company, as well as a referral to Mr. Kevin O'Donnell, President and CEO of the CAN-DO organization, (the industrial development agency for the greater Hazleton area, and the prime driver for economic development in lower Luzerne and upper Carbon counties. Mr. O'Donnell provided assistance in securing a meeting with a Hazleton based investor within the cannabis industry.) The APKCFEE also helped refine a detailed manufacturing cell proposal to Dixie Brands, a major producer of cannabis products. The proposal included capital equipment costs, operational floor space requirements, production estimation, costs of production and distribution, and profit estimations. Other various services provided by the APKCFEE included evaluation of the company's labeling design, registration of the company's trademark, copyright of the company's tagline, packaging evaluation, pricing model development and evaluation, reference to cannabis industry trade association and informational resources. Troy Everetts graduated from Wilkes University in 2017 and remains a client. Mt. Everetts Frozen Creations, LLC is currently pre-revenue and seeking to expand their production capability, with assistance from the APKCFEE to establish a nationwide distribution and sales system.