Are you wondering what the different terms mean on the Bizhub? Wonder no more! This Glossary will help you navigate all of the different lingo on this platform
Idea⠀is the earliest stage for ventures on this platform. Typically, Idea-stage ventures are made up of between 1-3 cofounders, are not legally incorporated, and don't have users or customers yet. If you are Idea-stage, you are likely looking for resources to help you move your idea off of paper and into reality.
As compared to Idea-Stage ventures,⠀Early⠀ventures typically consist of a small team, are incorporated, and already serving some early users or customers.
At this stage, you've already tested out the validity of your idea, and you are looking for resources to start scaling up your operations. This tends to be the stage where ventures start seeking outside funding for their venture, if they plan to take any.
Growth-stage⠀ventures have solid traction and an established user base, a developed team, and are actively delivering their products or services.
If it's a for-profit venture, the established stage is when you have revenue coming in and are looking to grow to serve more customers in your initial market, or enter into your secondary market, if applicable
By the time you reach⠀Mature-Stage, you have an established team, are generating consistent revenues, and have your business model figured out. Mature ventures have successfully captured their initial target markets, and have an established group of users or customers.
Mature ventures might be interested in resources that are going to help them expand to a new market segment or customer vertical.
Events⠀are any type of event that is focused on helping entrepreneurs. Note that we only collect information about Recurring events - they must repeat on a weekly, monthly, or annual basis to be included. You can check out the Community Event Calendar for a list of one-off events!
-⠀Competitions⠀are events where participants compete for some type of prize. Pitch Competitions and hackathons are common types.
-⠀Conferences⠀bring together people from specific industries or interest areas for networking, workshops, and industry-building activities
-⠀Workshops ⠀are educational events focused on helping you learn about a specific field or gain a specific skill. Note that Workshops Series (where there are multiple workshops that cover different topics) might be found under Educational Programs instead
Funding⠀is a category that captures all of the different ways that you can fund your venture. Broadly, there are four main types of funding:
-⠀Equity⠀funding refers to money that is gotten in exchange for a percentage ownership of your venture.⠀Venture Capital and⠀Angel Investment⠀are two common sources of equity funding
-⠀Grants⠀are sums of money that you don't have to repay, but often they carry restrictions to ensure the funds are used in a certain manner. There are few grants for for-profit businesses, but are common awards for pitch competitions.
-⠀Debt⠀refers to any capital where you borrow money and then pay it back after a certain period of time, typically with interest.⠀Loans⠀and⠀Revenue-based financing⠀are common types of debt capital
-⠀Tax Credits⠀refer to money you can get back on your taxes if you meet certain requirements. Unlike the other types of funding, you don't get money up front, but rather you reduce your tax burden or get money back come tax time
People⠀is used to describe all of the different types of people that you will need for your entrepreneurial endeavors to be a success. This includes:
-⠀Mentors⠀⠀- people who will give you advice about how to launch, grow, and manage your business
-⠀Peer Groups -⠀other founders who have shared experiences or backgrounds who you can lean on for support and resources
Programs⠀refers to specific programs that are meant to help you launch, grow, and manage your business. There are three main categories:
-⠀Incubators⠀are programs that help companies at the earliest stages. They often provide mentorship, support, and connections to resources to help grow your business
-⠀Accelerators⠀are programs meant to help entrepreneurs make massive progress on their businesses over a relatively short period of time. They may or may not include funding, but are typically cohort-based
-⠀Educational Programs⠀refers to any program that is focused primarily on educating participants on a specific topic. These are good to explore if you are looking to expand your skill set or hone your business skills
Spaces⠀refers to any space that you can leverage to build, launch, or grow your business. There are four main categories:
-⠀Coworking Spaces⠀are places where you can work alongside other entrepreneurs in a shared work environment. Often, you can get a pass that lets you drop in whenever, reserve a private desk, or event rent a small office in the space
-⠀Makerspaces⠀are places that contain machines, tools, and workspace in order for you to prototype and build physical products. They often contain tools for digital fabrication (like 3D printing), textile work, woodworking, metalworking, and even circuity and other electronic tools
-⠀Studio Spaces⠀are places that you can use for activities such as photography, videography, audio recording, or other artistic pursuits
-⠀Kitchen Spaces⠀refer to commercial kitchen spaces that are often required for food and drink based ventures
Tools⠀is another broad category that contains anything that you can use to help build your business. There are four main subtypes:
-⠀Media Sources⠀include local news outlets, online platforms, podcasts, and other types of media that either target business owners, or can provide entrepreneurs a platform to market their services locally
-⠀Digital Tools⠀include online search databases, accounting software, and other online programs that can help you find more information or manage your business more efficiently
-⠀Probono Services⠀provide free support for things like legal matters, accounting help, and more
Nonprofit⠀ventures differ from their for-profit counterparts in that they have a community or social-impact mission, and revenues are reinvested into furthering that mission. They commonly have a 501(c)(3) designation that allows them to receive tax-deductible donations and grant funding. Some Resource marked "Nonprofit" require that you have a 501(c)(3) designation, while others don't - check out their website for more information
Traditional Businesses range from Main-Street businesses all the way to multi-national corporations. Examples of Main Street businesses include restaurants, retail shops, or services businesses. Traditional Businesses also include "Middle Market" companies, which are different from Main Street businesses in that they typically generate between $10-$100m in annual shares. We use the term "Small Business" in many of our filters, but we're broadly referring to traditional, for-profit business (as opposed to High Growth businesses, which is a specific subset of for-profit companies)
Growth Startups are a small, super specific subset of for-profit businesses. Growth Startups are focused on growing extremely rapidly in order to capture as much market share as possible, typically with the intent to "Exit" by either being acquired by another company or 'Going Public' via an IPO. These ventures typically are targeting national or global markets that are larger than $500m, and they tend to take Venture Capital financing. Not all tech-enabled companies are Growth Startups, although some are, and not all Growth Startups require technology, although most rely on it. Resources that have the Startup tag, but not the Small Business tag as well, are specifically for Growth Startups alone.
This tag is used to indicate any Resource or Organization that works specifically with Female Founders, including female-identifying and other womxn populations. To learn more about the specific services of the Resource or Organization, visit their website!
This tag is used to indicate any Resources or Organizations that work specifically with Black, Latinx, or other POC groups. A Resource or Organization might exclusively work with these groups, or might simply give preference to them - check out the entry's website for more specific information.
This tag is used to indicate any Resources or Organizations that work specifically with Veteran, or Veteran-Spouse, founders. To learn more about their specific services or the branches that they work with, visit their website. Also, thank you for your service.
Birmingham Business Alliance
505 20th Street North, Suite 200
Birmingham, AL 35203
The Bham BizHub is a program led and co-founded by the Birmingham Business Alliance in partnership with the Innovation Depot, Alabama Capital Network and the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). Thank you to our funders, the City of Birmingham and The Switch, for making this project possible.
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