MIDDLETOWN — Having a small business plan is great, but engaging it can be costly.
With a $50,000 grant from the Delaware Division of Small Business, Ashley Rice can better meet the challenge
Ms. Rice, who owns Nest Play Cafe with husband Jacob Rice, envisions creating a unique experience for visiting children to play and learn while their parents to enjoy the scene.
“We want to be able to serve food and beverages and coffee and things like that,” she said of her business that opened in May.
“And we can’t do that yet because of the expense of all that stuff. The cost of all that equipment is ridiculous, it’s so expensive.
“So the grant really just gives us that push to be able to get that equipment, get some of the plumbing work that we needed because when we got this place, we didn’t realize how expensive it is to add water here and things that we need have such as a sink, stuff like that.
“So with the grant we really have been able to push to get that done.”
Nest Play Cafe and nine other small businesses in Delaware received the funds through the Encouraging Development, Growth and Expansion (EDGE) program.
According to a news release issued by the Delaware Division of Small Business, “The Nest Play Cafe is an innovative establishment for parents to take their young children, to explore a fun, exciting play area, while they relax or interact with other parents in an upscale café lounge and seating area.
“With a holistic, eco-friendly and Montessori-inspired approach the Nest Play Café offers programming including baby sign language, Spanish, Mandarin, sensory play, arts and crafts, and milestone development classes taught by a pediatric occupational therapist.
“EDGE funding will enable to owners to do phase 2 of their construction plan for an additional restroom and add plumbing and buy equipment for an organic coffee and smoothie bar area.”
Nest Play Cafe is located at 5350 Summit Bridge Road at the Cricklewood Grove shopping center. For more information call 302-696-2023 or visit thenestde.com.
Sixteen small business finalists gave public presentations in May at Delaware State University. Approximately 130 businesses applied for funding in March.
Businesses that are less than seven years and employ no more than 10 staff were eligible to apply.
Businesses that are less than seven years old and employ no more than 10 staff, are eligible to apply for an EDGE grant. Nest Play Cafe opened in May and has five part-time employees.
Winning EDGE businesses in the science, technology, engineering and math class included Doubly, LLC of Middletown and Wilmington-based Connect2Co., Inc., Hx Innovations, TX Electromagnetic Materials, LLC and Leadership Excellence Academy for Non-Profits.
Besides Studio B, other entrepreneur class winners included G & R Industries, LLC of Smyrna, Paraklete Properties & Design, LLC of Viola, and Droneversity, LLC of Wilmington.