LHU's Nano-Incubator

 Where new businesses take their first baby steps

The LHU Nano-Incubator was established to help overcome the roadblocks to students establishing their own businesses. While many students say they would like to launch their own businesses, many of them never will. Some of their reasons for not becoming an entrepreneur include:

  1. Lack of time to devote to the new launch
  2. Lack of funds
  3. Fear of failure

With the LHU Nano-Incubator, students can overcome all three of the roadblocks above.


A nano-incubator allows students to launch a micro-business which can be developed by spending whatever free time is available in between studying and university life. It can be as simple as selling things on eBay, or move up to selling products or services with your own website.

If a student already has an idea for a large business, which can’t be launched without full-time attention from the owner, a nano-incubator allows that student to launch just a small part of what will eventually become the large business. Examples include:

  • Want to launch a sporting goods business? You can start by selling individual sports items online.
  • Want to launch a designer clothing business? Again, you can start with individual items you can sell online.

By launching a part of the business, students will be more knowledgeable, more prepared, and more appealing to potential financial backers when they graduate.


Online businesses, or parts of businesses, cost almost nothing to launch. A domain name costs $15 or so a year. Hosting your website will run you $9 or $10 a month. LHU can help you develop and post your website for free. A credit card company will take 2-7% of your sales. The only additional expenses come from finding traffic for your site. Even there, you can use blogs and tweets to promote your site for free. If you want to use search engine advertising, you can get started for $20 a month (and up obviously). By getting started with a minimal investment, you can discover if your product/site sells well enough for you to pay more in search engine ads.

All the how-to knowledge you need is available at LHU for FREE through LHU’s Nano-Incubator.


Everyone faces fear when trying something new. But a nano-incubator allows you to reduce the fear of failure to a minimum. After all, fear of failure depends for its strength on how much you are risking.

By starting a micro-business where you post a few items and see if they will sell, you are risking less than $200. And some of your free time. If you fail, so what? Find new items and/or new ideas and try again. Most entrepreneurs have at least one failure behind them. The benefit of the nano-incubator is it limits your risks to micro-risks. So if one fails, you can easily start another and another – until you find one that succeeds.

Once you find something people are eager to buy, you can start expanding the business. You may be able to pay for the expansion through your profits, thus growing your business without outside help. However, if you will require financing – you will have a successful track record in your industry. You will be able to show potential investors you understand your market and you have the sales to prove it. This gives you a big advantage over someone who has just an idea and a business plan.

Want to Know More?

Department of Business and Computer Science

Dr. William Lloyd
107 Akeley Hall, Lock Haven University
Department Office: (570) 484-2974

Contact our Admissions Office

8:00am to 4:00pm Monday-Friday
(570) 484-2027

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