'We wanted it to work out': Raleigh co-manufacturing space to close impacting small businesses

Akilah Davis Image
Tuesday, January 10, 2023
Raleigh co-manufacturing space The Factory to close
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According to data from the Wake County Economic Development, small businesses make up 83 percent of the business community

For new business owner Lamar Floyd, the Factory is much more than a co-manufacturing space. He found community and support getting his fragrance business, Flower to the People off the ground. He will now have to find another work home.

"I was hurt. Brick and mortar is expensive. It takes capital that you don't have in the beginning. Starting out it gives you freedom to build," said Floyd. "The factory house two nonprofits, a budding radio station. People had jobs here. They had a business location and address to ship from or have people pick up from. It made business easier."

The owner Johnny Hackett opened the Factory in February of last year thanks to a Walmart grant of more than $150,000. According to Hackett, minorities needed a safe space to collaborate and create. When the money from the grant dried up, his landlord gave him breaks on the rent to help the operation stay afloat.

"That's on me. So us not being successful, that's something that sits with me," he said. "We'll be closing this month in January."

Hackett also runs Black Friday Market in downtown Raleigh.

According to data from the Wake County Economic Development, small businesses make up 83 percent of the business community, but only 15 percent are owned by minorities.

"The key is to find the folks who really support you in a tangible way," said Hackett.

Hackett told ABC11 with the closure, he now has more time to focus on Black Friday Market. He is now looking at the next phase of what the factory could look in the future.

" We all wanted this to workout," said Floyd. "The factory housed two nonprofits, a budding radio station. People had jobs here. They had a business location and address to ship from or have people pick up from. It made business easier."