New tech facility attracting start-up businesses

BRUNSWICK, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- More new jobs will be coming to

Brunswick Landing

, the former Navy base, with a new TechPlace facility. The job numbers won't be big at first, just one or two at a time, but that's the whole idea.

The TechPlace facility at Brunswick Landing has been open a week, and businesses are already moving in. The former aircraft service building has been converted into offices and shops for new technology and manufacturing businesses to get started.

Brunswick Landing Executive Director Steve Levesque said they've been needing a facility like this one for a long time. He said the larger buildings on the base are often too big for many companies, especially for those just starting out. He's hoping the shared office spaces will be attractive to a lot of new businesses, so they can grow and then hire more employees. The offices range from a single desk in a room with a dozen others, to larger spaces that could hold a number of workers in one office.

Kristine Schuman, who is managing the TechPlace facility, said they already have four businesses signed up and moving in, with a number of others ready to sign leases.

"Six months from now," said Schuman, "I would say at least half our offices if not more will be filled, and at least five companies in our manufacturing area."

One of the businesses already moving in is a biotech company from Switzerland, called InSphero. It uses human cells to make products that are used for testing drugs, food and even cosmetics.. They plan to build a chemical lab in the facility, hire chemists and other staff, and do their U.S. manufacturing at Tech Place.

Brunswick Landing also plans to organize a variety of training classes at the facility, to help new business owners learn more about things like financing, patenting, and marketing their products.


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