Two years ago, QEDC came up with the concept of renting out kitchen space in Long Island City to aspiring bakers and chefs, who could not afford their own space to hone their craft.
When the initiative began, QEDC had roughly 40 groups or individuals renting space from them. In two years, that number has jumped to 170.
At the moment, QEDC is roughly 70 percent full, and would like to boost those numbers by 10 percent. While 100 percent would be ideal, it may cause logistical problems if the schedule became that tight.
The space is currently open 24 hours a day, seven days a week for anyone who wants to rent a specific time slot.
Rebecca Dengrove started working out of the space in 2010, and her business Brewla began manufacturing its products - frozen desert bars with only 70 calories to appeal to health and figure-conscious buyers – in 2011.
Last year, at the first anniversary party, Dengrove met a buyer from Fairway Market who liked her product. A meeting was set up between Dengrove and the frozen buyer for Fairway that resulted in Brewla being sold by the chain supermarket.
In addition to Fairway, Brewla is now also available at Whole Foods.
“We wouldn’t be in stores if it wasn’t for this event last year,” Dengrove said.
Dengrove said that she still rents space from QEDC because she is constantly testing out different flavors and formulas.
She makes the first bars at home, but then uses the Entrepreneur Space to make sure that the batch she made in her house will be the same once it’s produced on a larger scale.
Last year alone, businesses that rented space from QEDC made approximately $2.5 million from products actually made in the space or by connections set up through the program.