Local couple start new hospitality sector incubator

  • Northern Irish couple Ryan Crown and Ema O’Kane are launching a new incubation space for entrepreneurs in the hospitality sector to develop and test new products.

    Incubators have proven incredibly successful in multiple sectors of Northern Ireland's tech industry, with several successful companies and products emerging from the Catalyst FinTech hub, Ignite accelerator, and similar spaces. The NI hospitality sector is set to get its own new incubation space with the announcement of a new space opening in the Cathedral Quarter.

    The Hill Street Hatch will offer hospitality entrepreneurs and creators with space to develop and test new hospitality startup concepts. The space has been independently funded by local couple Ryan Crown and Ema O’Kane, who recently returned to Northern Ireland afters spending five years working with big brands in the New York hospitality sector.

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    The space will feature a purpose-built ground floor kitchen to allow creators to prepare and sell products, and an upper floor development area where people can develop new culinary concepts and test new hospitality ideas. The building will also feature a shop window that will allow creators to safely sell their menus to the public despite the pandemic and ongoing lockdowns.

    Residency in the Hill Street Hatch will rotate from mont-to-month, giving different companies an opportunity to develop and test new product ranges. The Hatch officially opens tomorrow to the public with its first pop-up concept from local catering company Humble Pie, who will be selling a range of sweet and savoury pies and other sides. It will be open from December 4th to December 19th and will be open from Thursday to Sunday (noon to 7PM) each week.

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    Ema O’Kane, co-founder of Hill Street Hatch commented: "The events of this year have transformed how people consume and enjoy hospitality experiences and the launch of the Hatch seeks to provide an innovative and flexible approach to customer interaction. Rather than rest on their laurels in the aftermath of the pandemic, we have seen a rise in creativity, innovation, entrepreneurship and passion in the industry."

    Ryan Crown said: "Hill Street Hatch aims to enable and support hospitality entrepreneurs by offering them a space, community and opportunity to test their ideas and to have early-days face-to-face interactions with customers which is a quintessential element of the hospitality sector."

    If you're an entrpreneur in the hospitality sector and want an opportunity to use the space to develop and testa new hospitality idea, you can register your interest now over at www.hillstreethatch.com.

    Source: Written based on press release

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