The Merrimack Valley Chamber of Commerce awarded CI Works with their Innovation Award in the small business category during the June Small Business Month. We are pleased to be recognized for our efforts related to Innovation. Our innovation efforts are centered around changing the landscape of real estate management to actually be supportive of the success of small businesses and not one of the main causes behind business failure. Our intentions are to assist innovators in achieving success through their inventions through a real estate platform that works with them and not against them. We hope that our efforts will change the real estate model with other real estate owners – almost anywhere.
CI Works has been working with small businesses since 2010 in different locations in Amesbury and Newburyport. The standard definition of small businesses – according to the US Small Business Administration (SBA) – is companies with up to 500 employees. Ask any business owner you know about a 500 employee business and they will refer to those businesses that are very successful and large companies. The SBA really needs to innovate themselves and recognize that the largest number of businesses falls into the category of 1 – 10 employees – Micro businesses. SBA programs (and state programs) remain geared to companies with 500 employees with HR, Finance, and production departments that can meet the SBA paperwork and patience fiascos – as was evidenced by where the appropriated monies during the recent pandemic were distributed and not to the Micros that needed the assistance funds the most. Many companies in this range are now no longer in existence. That is not Innovation on the part of the SBA, it is proceeding in reverse given all of the advances in available tools like the internet. The SBA still requires ‘wet’ signatures on documents. What the heck is a wet signature?
CI Works only focuses on these Micros and has been able to locate 45 Micro businesses in one building and this co-location and interaction has resulted in significant inventions, advances in materials and processes, and significant growth in revenues. A common need for these Micros is in establishing an identity and being located by customers and contacted. A business may have invented a different widget or process, but gaining that recognition will still potentially take years to grow sales. CI Works latest innovation is a software tool referred to as MicroFind that will identify specific companies based upon the existence of a web site (domain) and a Google business account (intended to connect to Google search). We can even identify in addition to the virtual company information – also the physical address for each. The basis for this query is a geographic radius from a specific starting point – YOUR ADDRESS. More details to come in the next month or so.
We believe this latest innovation will be extremely useful to the Micro businesses we work with in expediting their identity and sales and partnerships…and maybe another MVCC award?