Kickstart Columbus Provides Retailers with Free Rent for a Year

Starting a business, building a brand and creating a presence in the community is not easy for anyone. For Julie Wilkes, owner of Seven Studios, it is the culmination of years of hard work.

Through Kickstart Columbus −a partnership with The Economic & Community Development Institute, Columbus City Council, Columbus Downtown Development Corporation & Capital South, and Capital Crossroads− Julie won her bid to take Seven Studios downtown. Her total prize package includes free rent for a year, reduced rent for the following two years, and complimentary business development courses and expertise from ECDI. For full package details, visit

Seven Studios is a 1,100-square-foot studio located at 275 S. Third St. in downtown Columbus next to Columbus Commons. This space has been newly renovated and has easy accessibility to covered parking and meters. It offers yoga, pilates and boot camp classes, as well as life coaching.

I recently had the opportunity to chat with Julie about her business.

Douglas Craven: What are you excited about in terms of bringing your services to the downtown area?

Julie Wilkes: Downtown Columbus is a rapidly growing area− with new condos, apartments, businesses and beautification projects on every corner!  With this increase in people comes a need for more retail and services in the city.

I am excited that Seven Studios is perfectly located to be easy access for anyone who works in the city, a resident of the city or a resident in the surrounding areas, like Short North, German Village, Grandview and Olde Towne! Seven Studios makes it easy for people to find something positive to do in their life everyday.

DC: What is Seven Studio’s mission?

JW: To elevate the lives of others through authentic and comprehensive mind/body/spirit connections.

We provide mind, body and inspirational offerings that empower attendees to embrace their lives in powerful ways.  Specifically, to offer yoga, pilates, bootcamp classes, life coaching, motivational workshops, videos, books and aromatherapy products to inspire and provide a full offering of wellness solutions.

This is a retreat away from “everyday stuff,” where once returned, individuals move their lives from feeling ordinary to extraordinary.

DC: It sounds like Seven is all about connecting to yourself, your surroundings, and the city. How will your business connect to the community?

JW: Every Sunday, we will have a Cause Yoga Class at 4 p.m., which is free and open to the community. We collect donations which we contribute to help find a cure for cancer. Instructors rotate each Sunday, so you always have a fresh, new experience. Sign up is recommended.

DC: When will Seven Studios open for business?

JW: We open June 24th and to celebrate we will have free classes all week− 19 free classes! Sign up is recommended. We will offer yoga, pilates, and Insanity bootcamp!

On Friday, June 28th from 5:30 to 8 p.m., we are having a grand opening party! All are invited to celebrate Seven, hear a little about it’s offerings, meet the instructors, and some will even win a life coaching package, a month unlimited membership to Seven, Seven Studio’s custom aromatherapy candles and more!

DC: Julie, thanks for taking the time to share some of the exciting news about Seven Studios. It sounds like you have your work cut out for you.

JW: We have worked a long time for this. We are ready to get started. I’ll see you there!


It is clear that Julie is passionate about her addition to the downtown business scene. ECDI has always been focused on assisting our clients achieve success through expanding existing businesses and building new ones. Kickstart Columbus was a perfect partnership that highlights many of the services available to entrepreneurs just like Julie.

To learn more about ECDI, visit

To learn more about Seven Studios, visit