Small Business Spotlight: ADX
All images © ADX.
This August, Res Nova Law is shining its Small Business Spotlight on ADX, a collaborative maker hub offering shared tools, work space, and knowledge for Portland's creative community. Since ADX opened its doors in 2011, this 14,000 square-foot facility has been an invaluable resource for high-profile designers, novice builders, entrepreneurs, artists, and hobbyists alike. ADX offers various levels of membership, starting from a basic package, to an all-access pass to ADX's custom fabrication shop (including a wood shop, metal shop, print job, and jewelry shop), to a freshly launched "Pro" membership geared toward creative companies who are starting to scale their businesses. To learn more about ADX and its exciting new ADX Pro membership, we sat down for a quick Q&A with Kelley Roy, founder and owner of ADX.
Q: What motivated you to start ADX?
Kelley: After years of working with artists and small creative businesses as a consultant, I realized that having a hub where they could access the space, tools, and professional resources they needed to start and grow their companies was desperately needed. There were a ton of collectives and shared spaces around, but still a ton of artists, designers and small businesses that were struggling to actually make a living from their craft. This has been one of the many driving forces behind ADX—to buck the system that says you cannot make a living as an artist, designer, maker, or small business.
Q: What made you realize there was a need for an ADX Pro membership?
Kelley: After 6 years, we have seen many successes, failures, and false starts. We have also witnessed some big and unexpected connections and collaborations. At a certain point, the businesses that startup at ADX need to go to the next step which means honing their business plan, getting their financial world in order, buying their own tools, and setting up their production line in the most efficient way. ADX Pro is a response to this next step along the path to success. We provide 400 square feet of space and access to an incredible network of business partners that can help with business plan development, accounting and legal assistance, marketing strategies, access to capital for purchasing their own tools and more.
The final step in the process is helping find permanent and affordable workspaces for our member companies. And that is getting harder and harder as Portland experiences an affordable workspace crisis equivalent to the affordable housing crisis. We are trying to work with the City and local developers to come up with some solutions for supporting this very important part of our local economy and culture. Shared spaces are definitely the only way maker businesses can stay close in, and we are working hard to plug growing companies into available spaces.
Q: What excites you the most about ADX Pro?
Kelley: ADX Pro holds a special place in my heart because I love helping small businesses along their path to success. ADX itself is a small business and I have first hand experience with the challenges that come up: from HR to finance to marketing and everything in between. It has been a wild adventure and our ADX Pros get to be a resource for each other as they all struggle through their initial phases of growth. I love being a resource for all of our member businesses and the Pros are taking it to the next level. They are making critical investments in their companies and developing necessary marketing and sales strategies for growing their businesses to the right scale. By clearly articulating what they need and what they know and don't know, we are able to direct them to an incredible network of resources that we have spent over 7 years building.
Q: What are some cool things your ADX Pros have accomplished?
Kelley: In less than 6 months, our Pros are experiencing some great success. DIY Bar got a great feature on BuzzFeed, and they have been sold out ever since. Maslow CNC just finished shipping all of their Kickstarter CNCs around the globe and are working on a cool tiny house project in conjunction with a handful of community partners. Studio Moe is having their best year ever since landing at ADX 6 years ago, now that they have the space and tools they need to ramp up production. Summit Wood Creations is now contracting with the ADX Design and Fabrication team to increase their production with our CNC machine. Incidental Design is refining their product lines and branching out into local retail through connections we helped them make to MadeHere PDX, Portland’s go to shop for locally made goods.
Click the above links to check out the Pros' stunning work.
All images © ADX.
Thanks for chatting with us, Kelley! As fellow facilitators of growth for our small business clients, we're so glad ADX Pro is here to help creative businesses thrive.
Be a Pro:
Want to become a Pro? Start your journey along the ADX Maker Path. Choose from a variety of programs that include 6 months of membership and a series of classes that lead you towards a final project (and maybe your own business)!
The ADX Pros are co-located with the ADX Design and Fabrication team at: The ANX, 1015 SE Stark Street in Portland, Oregon.
Visit them online at: www.adxportland.com
Res Nova Law is an intellectual property and business law firm based in beautiful Portland, Oregon, serving makers, innovators, and entrepreneurs. We’re your go-to lawyers for startups and small to midsize businesses in every stage of business growth. Our legal services include business formation, contract drafting, intellectual property advising and litigation, business advising and litigation, and more. Get in touch with our experienced intellectual property and business lawyers today.