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Economy

Bounce Innovation Hub May Take Ownership of Building

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JENNIFER CONN
/
WKSU
The entrance to Bounce's first floor Generator space.

Akron City Council will consider a deal Monday that enables the city to give the Bounce Innovation Hub the building it occupies. 

Bounce is housed in the old B.F. Goodrich building. It helps entrepreneurs and startups turn ideas into end-products through mentorship, collaboration and investment.

Akron acquired the nine-story building from BF Goodrich decades ago for a dollar. The site has served as the city’s entrepreneurial hub and now houses Bounce and nearly 50 small businesses.

The nine-story structure requires management and maintenance, duties CEO Doug Weintraub said were transferred to Bounce early this year.

“The concept of Bounce taking over the building relieves the city of the burden of the old building and allows us to use this to build off the mission that the mayor and I talked about way back when, when I first started here at Bounce,” Weintraub said.

Bounce staff began taking over the duties the city had performed, such as ordering supplies and other daily operations, earlier this year.

“It’s just what we normally see with incubation buildings of this type, that nonprofits or the groups that operate them run the building, run the expenses, manage the building, to allow us to do that special type of programming, which is ultimately what we’re here for as Bounce,” he said.

To acquire the building, Bounce must continue serving as an innovation hub for the next 10 years, strengthening Akron’s economy by helping businesses turn ideas into marketable products.