Share the Spirit: Richmond center boosts budding businesses

[Rebecca & Noel Shabazian] had been comfortable working together at a hair salon in Berkeley and weren’t looking to become owners themselves. That is, until an industry conference in Long Beach changed their minds. It was the first time they saw their own potential, she said.

[T]hey turned to the Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center in Richmond, a nonprofit organization with offices around the Bay Area that helps women, people of color, low-income and formerly incarcerated residents own and operate their own businesses. The center doesn’t turn anyone away, but offers low-cost classes and scholarships, said Bret Sweet, the director of the organization’s center in Richmond.

Rebecca Shabazian took the first leap: an introductory course at the Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center. It was a four-week class, once a week covering business basics, she said. But, it was enough to get the ball rolling.

She and her husband [then] enrolled in the next course, this one a bit longer and more focused on retail businesses, she said. The teacher helped them write a business plan, assess the competition, figure out finances and quantify costs.

Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center helps people launch their own business

By Erin Baldassari, 13-12-2018