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NedSpace: A Home for New Portland Businesses

Friday, September 12, 2014


NedSpace is located in the United Way Building.

You had an idea, you started a company, but now it’s time for you to move out of your  parents’ basement.

That’s where NedSpace comes in: a city-center co-working space for startup business, entrepreneurs, designers, marketers, coders, HTML jockeys, remote workers, freelancers, and more. 

The brainchild of Mark Grimes, NedSpace is a place for people looking for collaboration, an office space to work in, or both. What makes it different from others is that it has a very open environment - those who use NedSpace have varying experience levels, and unique events are held for the workers to help productivity.

Not all of the residents are startups either -  some of them are companies from elsewhere, looking to branch out to Portland and surrounding areas. 

That’s the way Grimes wants it. A social entrepreneur, Grimes is behind not just NedSpace, but also Maker Faire Africa, an annual event highlighting African inventions, and nonprofits Stop Genocide Now and Made by Survivors.

For the last 20 years he has been working with start-ups. Of those years, the last five have been spent on the NedSpace.

The space itself recently moved downtown and is now located on Southwest 11th Avenue and Alder Street. It’s a central, downtown location to help those who use it feel right in the middle of the action.

As Grimes describes it, it's a place “to provide workers a space to engage.”

NedSpace had humble beginnings, with only a few signers renting out an old decrepit building. Today, more than 15 companies use the new downtown space.

“This growth hasn’t been from loans or investors, but has been a natural growth over time,” says Grimes. 

Even in an economic downturn, NedSpace has thrived.

“It’s perfect for harsh economic times,” says Grimes. “Entrepreneurs don’t need leases - they need offices.”  

So when you’re ready to quit working in your pyjamas and start rubbing shoulders with a vibrant community of entrepreneurs, NedSpace is a good place to start.


Related Slideshow: Slideshow: Nedspace Residents

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Buddy Up

Buddy Up

Launching this fall, Buddy UP is a social site where students can connect with classes for academic success.

Brian Forrester, the founder and CEO of Buddy Up, had failed a Statistics course in his Junior year and was then inspired to create Buddy Up.

Buddy Up lists subjects and courses, allowing users to friend classmates with similar suject classes to make it easy to connect. A calendar also helps keep track of meeting/study group dates, and allow users to easily schedule a study session, making it more official in the digital age and easier to keep track of.

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Be Global

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BeGlobal is a nonprofit study abroad organization that focuses on accepting Japanese grade school students to learn English in Portland, for a short homestay program.

BeGlobal is a partnering company of GPI US, and they look to find families in and around Portland that would be interested in hosting students during their program. From the student's perspective, their programs include everything from transportation to host family accommodation. 

Toa Suruki, BeGlobal's Program Coordinator and Homestay Recruiter, was an exchange student who stayed with a host family when she studied abroad in college. “ What I truly appreciate is because I experienced an exchange program in a country that is not my home country, I gained a new personal connection to the country that I have interest in and I still keep in contact with my host family. “

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Distiller Promo promotes band to non-commercial and college radio.  

Started four years ago by Dave Sanford, after his exit from SPECTRE Entertainment Group (an event and entertainment production company) , it's a self-funded business. Sanford tailors his services to bands, band managers, and record producers.

Check out their current promotions and projects at their website, and contact Dave at [email protected] for any questions.

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Started in Texas as a family company Lt. Blender's Coctkails in a Bag are all-natural dehydrated cocktail mixes. "Good for travel, backpacking, the beach, and outdoors" the cocktail packages are colourful and ready to be mixed for your enjoyment. 

They offer cocktails such as Mojitos, Margaritas, Sangrias, Pina Coladas and many more. You can pick one up at store's like Sam's Wholesale, Costco, and BevMo, or order them online from their site: ltblender.com

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Open Sky

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Open sky is an e-commerce website for small brands and stores. Founded in NY in 2009, it has since built branches in Tennesse and Oregon. It is a retail market where customers can discover and connect with small brands that they would otherwise pass by. 

With more than 8,000 stores, you can shop and share stores to get updates and discover more, so you are  always ready for what's new and cool. 
A few local brands featured on the site are Teilla, Mad Hippie, Meadow, Olympic Provisions, and Journey Gym


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