The TreeHouse plants a new future of growth with seasoned startup expert

When we think of a treehouse, we can picture a physical tree fort constructed around, next to or among the trunk or branches of a strong tree above ground level. More often than not, a treehouse can be used for recreation, work space, ideation, habitation, hibernation, or observation. This is the purpose of The Addison TreeHouse powered by the Dallas Entrepreneur Center (aka The DEC), a resource centered co-working space focused on providing aspiring and seasoned entrepreneurs with education, programming/events, and mentorship for North Dallas. What makes this place one to take note of is its unofficial “gardener” Nancy Hong, a self-proclaimed OG (original gangster) in the Dallas startup community. 

Nancy Hong

Since her arrival five weeks ago, she has been busy working to increase visibility in funding opportunities and leverage the economic development in North Dallas. She has a keen eye for seeing the dots and connecting them for businesses to grow.  She’s a ball of fire and ready to take The TreeHouse to the next level.

Why The TreeHouse and Addison?

I have been in the startup community since 2008.  I helped my former boss, Dr. Joseph Picken, start the Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.  We worked with the community to connect students to startups, investors, experienced entrepreneurs, and major corporations. Then in 2013, I helped lay the groundwork for the Innovation Greenhouse in UNT Denton. In July of 2016, I was recruited by Texas Woman’s University in Denton to help run their hub for women for in business when they received funding from the Governor’s office.  

My craft is community sustainability and growth. My deep relationship in the North Dallas community was a perfect match for me at the Addison TreeHouse. I caught the wave at the right time as the foundation is already strong. The TreeHouse is special because the demographics for startups are an average of 40+ years old, entrepreneurs of well established, financially able to kick-start their companies. My experience from higher education to entrepreneurship has afforded me the opportunity to touch all generations and introduce entry-level candidates and investors in this sector.  The TreeHouse is built but it’s important for me to see the branches grow and strengthen the tree trunk. That’s my WHY!

What’s your ultimate vision for the space?

I believe that Addison has the perfect fertile soil for growth. The TreeHouse is ideal for the entrepreneurs ready to accelerate and optimize their businesses. I want to bring programming that meets the needs and demands of small businesses and investors. If you are ready to play in this big space, then the TreeHouse is for you! If you are thinking of starting a business or company, we will be your right-hand support to launch your ideas to reality.

The TreeHouse is special because the demographics for startups are an average of 40+ years old, entrepreneurs of well established, financially able to kick-start their companies.

Create a gateway for Investors

I want to create a space for investors to “hang out” and network with early to mid-stage startups and companies. My goal is to reverse the engineering of pitching (what does that mean?). We often see entrepreneurs pitching to investors. In this case, I plan to create a forum and platform for investors to pitch to businesses. As such, the company gets an understanding of what the investor is looking for.  We know that venture funding is moving online but it’s important to stay connected to the community and share deal flow and best practices in person. if you are interested in joining us this month, please Register for the event on September 20th at 3PM.

Cultivating a space for investors and entrepreneurs in North Dallas

Become the matchmaker for minority businesses

If your line of business meets the definitions and guidelines of business, The TreeHouse can assist with resources and guidance in certifying your business. My goal is to match these businesses with major companies to diversify the supplier pipeline and sell services to major companies in Addison.

 Strategic partnerships for coaching and mentoring

In addition to many mentors and coaches, we now have an in-house coach, Eli Logan, to coach and mentor aspiring and seasoned entrepreneurs with their ideas.  Eli Logan is an award-winning visionary with more than 15 years of experience emphasizing sales, marketing, and innovation in the energy, engineering, transportation, motorsports and face to face marketing industries. He is known as the Texas Hyperpreneur with a passion to share creative solutions and entrepreneurial spirits to all businesses.  You can follow him in Twitter @EliLoganTX

We also advise all of our members to sign up with, Service Corps of Retired Executive, a premier resource of free business mentoring and education from former business executives.  On September 29th we will host an event called, Do You Know What It Takes to Start a Business. Register today take an assessment of your skills/abilities, pin down your true business objective, and understand how to assess the market. Seating is limited.

We also collaborated with the Dallas Metropolitan Small Business Development Center that provides consulting, training, and resources with in partnership with the U.S Small Business Administration. We currently have a counselor here every Thursday and Friday providing in-house services to our members. We understand that most people prefer to stay local and get as many resources as possible to launch their business idea and/or company.

Doing Business in Addison

There’s so much potential and momentum currently in the Addison entrepreneurial ecosystem. This is the perfect city to start and scale your entrepreneurial itch! Addison is located along the North Dallas Tollway between LBJ (I-635) and President George Bush Turnpike to the North. The town has over 10 million square feet of quality office space and over 1600+ companies, which include Mary Kay Cosmetics, Zurich America, Google, USAA, Hilton Worldwide, United Surgical Partners, Dresser Inc, Oryon Technologies, Bottle Rocket Apps, London Broadcasting, Willis Group, Fannie Mae, Direct Source, Bank of America, and many others.

It is no secret that Addison’s knowledge-based workforce, superior quality of life, low tax rates, ease of doing business and existing business resources have helped the community become a leader in the innovation-driven economy. Over 180 restaurants and 22+ upscale hotels and city-produced festivals such as Taste of Addison, Kaboom Town! and Oktoberfest, makes Addison one of  the premier destinations and vibrant cultural communities to attract talent.

Addison  is a very progressive community. From startups to Fortune 100 companies, Addison connects people and opportunities to help you succeed. Are you ready to take it to the next level? There are so many events and activities taking place weekly to entice and feed your entrepreneurial appetite.

When you become a member of The Addison TreeHouse, you will receive one-year free membership to Metro Crest Chamber of Commerce.  The Chamber has a monthly luncheon called Brand U: A Small Business Brand Experience (formerly BusinessNSight) to enhance learning opportunities and professional development for business executives. This year’s theme is focused on marketing and branding, both personal and professional.

We also have other opportunities for entrepreneurs to congregate and share their energy:

Every Tuesday – Coffee House Cafe

This locally-owned community gathering place is the ultimate haven for entrepreneurs. BigDOCC: Talking Tech, Startups, and the Digital Lifestyle takes place every Tuesday from 8- 9 AM to discuss all technology in awesome fire chat ambiance that is passionate to be part of the techie lifestyle. The restaurant serves breakfast burritos and coffee. You pay for your own breakfast and coffee but useful ideas are free. The #BigDOCC was founded to give people a place to open up and be the people they love to be.

Every Wednesday – One Million Cups

For those that don’t want to drive past 635, Addison/Plano started its own One Million Cups meets every Wednesday at 9:00 AM. They are hosted at several locations around town if the Tollway and Frankford is not convenient for you.

These are held throughout different locations in Addison/Irving:

Startups To Know In Addison:

Avanta Risk Management– A property data-driven risk management company and service provider specializing in HOA solutions. They provide a personalized platform that helps identify, analyze, evaluate, mitigate and proactively monitor property conditions. If your company is looking to leverage or acquire data, this platform will help reduce your financial and reputational risks and enhance customer experience for your clients.
MyndVR – A one of a kind, national health and wellness company providing Virtual Reality solutions to Assisted Living, CCRCs, Veterans homes, 55+ living communities and home-health care providers. The company curates a vast library of VR content and creating programming designed to create happy, calming and memorable experiences. They are at the forefront of research cognitive health right in our backyard.

Addison is an accelerator and incubator of possibilities.

It all depends on you. If you would like to meet and connect with Nancy Hong, please check out her calendar for availability. She truly believes in an open door policy and ministers her passion for helping entrepreneurs.

Follow the Addison TreeHouse for events, activities, and doing business in the community:

Twitter: @TreeHouseTX

Instagram: @TreeHouseTX

Facebook: @AddisonTreeHouse

Stacey Guillen