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Spring 2024 Retail Lab Graduates 14 Local Entrepreneurs

On Wednesday, May 8, fourteen local entrepreneurs celebrated their completion of the Retail Lab Boot Camp. The program is tailored to address the complex issues that arise when opening and operating a retail establishment. The graduates of Retail Lab completed a six-week immersive boot camp that concluded with the opportunity to pitch for grant funding. This cohort featured a mixture of ventures ranging from a new record shop concept to a refreshing take on Bloody Mary mixes. All participants in the program shared...

Flywheel Foundation, Retail Lab, Small Business Center

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53 Ideas Pitch Competition

Applications for the 53 Ideas Pitch Competition open on May 5, 2024. Anyone in the 10 counties surrounding Charlotte can submit an idea to the competition for a chance to win $10,000 in funding for their business idea. Ideas in the form of a 53-second video can be submitted online May 5 thru May 31, 2024. Entry is limited to residents in the following NC counties: Anson, Cabarrus, Cleveland, Gaston, Iredell, Lincoln, Mecklenburg, Rowan, Stanly and Union. The 53 finalists will be announced in early June 2024. Mid-June...

53 Ideas Pitch Competition

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Velocity 2024 Business Accelerator Is Now Accepting Applications

Get ready to supercharge your startup! Join the Center for Creative Economy (CCE) for a 10-week program designed to help you turn your creative ideas into successful businesses. With customized curriculum and expert mentors, the Velocity 2024 Business Accelerator is everything you need to rev up your entrepreneurial journey. The Velocity business accelerator is seeking to help companies in Animation, Apparel, Art, Beauty, Digital Media, Film, Game Design, Photography, Video Production, Culinary, Music Industry, Podcasting,...

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Two More Retail Lab Graduates Open Brick-and-Mortar Stores

The Palmetto Market and Cellar Door Wine Shop are among a growing list of Retail Lab graduates to open brick-and-mortar stores in the area. The Retail Lab was established at the Cabarrus Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship through a partnership between the Small Business Center at Rowan-Cabarrus Community College and the Flywheel Foundation. The program is designed to help early stage and pre-launch retail business owners through a six-week boot camp focusing on business basics, strategy, branding and marketing,...

Retail Lab

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Rural Center’s NCInvest Invests $32M In 10 Venture Capital Funds

Investments Represent Unprecedented Access to Capital for Socially and Economically Disadvantaged Entrepreneurs Throughout North Carolina RALEIGH, N.C., March 01, 2024 — The NC Rural Center announced today that it has invested $32 million in 10 venture capital funds from across the United States, through its NCInvest initiative. NCInvest is funded by the State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI), a $10 billion venture capital and debt lending initiative managed by the U.S. Department of the Treasury (Treasury)....

NC Rural Fund, Small Business Funding

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NC IDEA Foundation to Kick Off Spring 2024 Grants Cycle with Info Sessions Throughout the State

Seeking Applications from Innovative Startups for NC IDEA MICRO and NC IDEA SEED Starting January 29th NC IDEA, a private foundation committed to supporting entrepreneurial ambition and economic empowerment in North Carolina, announced today that the organization will kick off its Spring 2024 Grants Cycle with information sessions throughout the state. The sessions will highlight NC IDEA’s two upcoming grant opportunities supporting ambitious, growth-oriented companies: NC IDEA MICRO awards small, project-based...

MICRO Grant, NC IDEA, NC IDEA Grants, SEED Grant

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Fall 2023 Retail Lab Graduates 9 Local Entrepreneurs

Nine local entrepreneurs celebrated their completion of the Fall 2023 Retail Lab Boot Camp—a program tailored to address the complex nature of starting and operating a retail establishment. The graduates of Retail Lab completed an application-based, six-week immersive boot camp, which concluded with the opportunity to pitch for grant funding. This cohort featured regional ventures, including a wine shop, innovative clothing brands, an international gift shop, and delicious food items. All participants in the program...

Flywheel Coworking, Retail Lab, Small Business Center at RCCC

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Health Equity Innovation Challenge Winners Showcase Progress and Vision at Cabarrus Center Pitch Round Robin

Winners of the inaugural Health Equity Innovation Challenge are halfway through their accelerator and recently spent the day in Concord, NC at the Cabarrus Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship participating in a rapid-fire pitch round robin. The Challenge, sponsored by Atrium Health and administered by the Flywheel Foundation, is a business idea competition for scalable and investable solutions to problems that lead to or create significant healthcare outcome disparities. Founders Pictured: Kwamane Liddell...

Health Equity Innovation Challenge

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ConvergeSouth 2023 Is Coming to the Greater Charlotte Region

ConvergeSouth 2023, a two-day Expo and Conference featuring founders, entrepreneurs, and investors coming together from across the Southeast, will be held for the first time in the Greater Charlotte Region on October 5th and 6th in downtown Concord, NC. The event is open to the public who are encouraged to attend. For registration and complete information on the conference go to “This is one of the largest gatherings of startups in the Southeast”, said Peter Marsh, a partner in Flywheel and...

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