04.14.20

NIIC Provides Virtual Resource for Businesses

Alex Brown, Assistant Managing Editor, Inside Indiana Business
Photo by Inside Indiana Business

Click here for video interview and full story.

Tuesday, April 14th 2020, 12:39 PM EDT, Updated: Tuesday, April 14th 2020, 1:32 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE – The chief executive officer of the Northeast Indiana Innovation Center in Fort Wayne says innovation is often times born out of crisis. The NIIC recently launched a virtual resource center designed to support the entrepreneurial community in Indiana during the COVID-19 pandemic. Karl LaPan says there will be a new normal for businesses, particularly small businesses and entrepreneurs, once the crisis passes.

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, LaPan said the pandemic has created a “significant amount of trauma” for businesses.

“I think it’s important that we pay attention to emotional well-being and self care for entrepreneurs, that we recognize that there will be a new normal; we’re not going to just go back to the way things were. And there’s also a real need to kind of reimagine the businesses in light of maybe some different ways that we’ll be working in the future.”

“With some of these new programs that have come out on economic injury and payment protection, they barely scratch the surface of the profound need that businesses have,” said LaPan. “A number of studies have shown that, just in the payment protection program, there’s almost a trillion dollar need and there’s only about a third of that amount funded in the stimulus bill. So I think for a lot of companies, the funding to get to a safer landing place is a huge issue.”

LaPan says the current situation creates a great opportunity for entrepreneurs and innovators to recharge, reset and retool. He says many companies are looking at businesses that they would never have considered before.

Click here for video interview and full story.

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