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The HuB has helped launch 20 companies from DealersUnited, an online marketplace for 6,000 auto dealers, to the HuB Studios, which creates short films, web series and online marketing videos.

Image: Barbara Banks

The Hub was founded in 2009 by Rich Swier Jr., who believed local entrepreneurs needed a place to incubate their start-ups and collaborate with other innovators and investors. Now run by CEO Assunta Swier, Rich’s wife, the HuB also has evolved into an online community of thousands from all over the world. The HuB is located in a downtown Sarasota office building that also includes a bank and the Economic Development Corporation of Sarasota County; its center of activity is the cavernous third floor with a conference room, offices, shared open spaces and a big kitchen and bar (a keg is always on tap). Dreams and companies have been launched here. “It’s truly a family and one of the rare spots in Sarasota where young people can be found,” says a young tenant.

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Image: Barbara Banks

The HuB by the Numbers

More than 50 companies with 500 employees are headquartered at the HuB.

HuB startup offrs.com now has 30 employees and uses artificial intelligence and smart data to predict real estate sales.

The HuB hosts breakfast socials, boot camps, meet-the-CEO receptions and educational seminars for creatives.

The third floor was designed as co-workspace. Up to 85 artists, engineers, programmers, designers, photographers and other entrepreneurs pay a monthly fee to use the space.

HuB charter member BioLucid creates digital imagery and 3D technology for the health care industry nationally.

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