RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK – With regular updates to keep content fresh, WRAL TechWire’s Triangle Startup Guide offers a timely resource package for anyone looking to start or grow a business in the Triangle area.

Today, we’re back with another new resource for local entrepreneurs. The latest update comes to the “Inspiration, Advice & More Resources” section of the guide, which features a mix of podcasts, video series, blogs, tips, market data reports and other miscellaneous resources for beginning entrepreneurs in the Triangle.

The newest addition to the list is the Council for Entrepreneurial Development’s 2021 Innovators Report, which was unveiled last week. The organization’s annual report provides an overview of North Carolina’s innovation economy, including the latest data on startup funding, deal flow and exits.

The 2021 edition reported a record $4.6 billion raised by 222 companies across 250 separate funding events—a 35% increase from 2020’s total. Technology investments accounted for 69% of the year’s deals, while life sciences claimed 24%.

In the announcement, CED Head of Capital Hunter Young said that while Epic Games’ $1 billion deal from last year impacted the total, the report also tracked another 15 deals where companies brought in over $50 million.

“The number of larger deals raised jumped almost 50% over the year before,” Young added.

You can read the full report here.

Other recent additions to the Triangle Startup Guide

Every week, we update the guide with new resources for local entrepreneurs for our exclusive Triangle Startup Guide. If we missed something, please feel free to suggest it for inclusion. You can email me directly or use this contact form.

In case you missed it, check out all the updates we made in 2021. And here’s a review of the additions from recent weeks:

  • In the “Competitions, Grants & Other Funding Sources” section of the guide, we added Folla Capital, an organization that helps startups and small businesses raise capital through regulation crowdfunding. Though Folla Capital is based in Wilmington, entrepreneurs in the Triangle and elsewhere can use its online platform to organize, launch and manage their crowdfunding campaign and investor relations. Folla Capital primarily focuses on raising capital for minority-, woman- and veteran-owned businesses.
  • We added E3 Durham to the “Accelerators and Mentorship Programs” section of the guide. Launching this month, E3 Durham is a new program that aims to provide mentorship, capital resources, workshops and networking for entrepreneurs in under-served communities across the Durham area. National nonprofit Forward Cities, which has a local chapter in Durham, first announced the E3 Durham program in late-2021. With support from a Small Business Administration grant and partnerships with the City of Durham and Durham County, E3 Durham will start with an outreach-focused community navigator pilot program, where designated “navigators” will connect with local entrepreneurs through community events.

New program for under-served entrepreneurs in Durham headlines Triangle Startup Guide updates

  • In the “Inspiration, Advice & More Resources” section of the guide, we added the newly released Innovation Road Trip series from Capitol B Creative Studios (a division of WRAL TechWire’s parent company, Capitol Broadcasting). The six-episode video series profiles the people, organizations, companies and programs that contribute to the state’s ever-growing innovation and entrepreneurship community. Season one tells the stories of CRISPR gene-editing researchers, UNC Chapel Hill’s Innovate Carolina, the North Carolina Biotechnology Center, Beaufort-based Jarrett Bay Boatworks, CBRE Raleigh and Gig East in Wilson.

Innovation Road Trip

More recent additions

  • In the ” Competitions, Grants & Other Funding Sources” section, we updated the listing for NC State University’s eGames pitch competition, adding new information about the program’s scope. eGames, which first launched in 2009, divides student pitches into a “think” category (idea-stage ventures) and a “do” category (startups that already have a product and customers). Judges evaluate the startups’ market feasibility, design, prototype and other aspects. Every year, the program grants about $100,000 to the winning companies. Applications are currently open for this year’s edition of eGames, scheduled for April 18.
  • In the “Accelerators & Mentorship Programs” section, we added Wake Technical Community College’s Main Street Entrepreneurs Accelerator Program (or MSEA), which launched earlier this month to support entrepreneurs and small business owners across Wake County. Starting in late-February, participants will attend five training sessions covering everything from attracting customers to planning financial projections. Those who attend all sessions and complete the required materials will submit their business pitches for the chance to win awards ranging from $2,000 to $8,000. Read more information about the program here.

Even more

  • In the “Competitions, Grants & Other Funding Sources” section, we added the upcoming Duke Cyber Pitch Competition, a program from Duke University’s Sanford Cyber Policy Program. The competition, held on Feb. 26, targets students with business ideas in the fields of cybersecurity, data protection, privacy and online safety. Selected individuals or teams will pitch their ventures to investment experts for a chance to win $25,000 and other prizes. Winners will also receive a grant from Paladin Capital, an investment firm headquartered in Washington, D.C.
  • In our list of COVID relief programs, we added a line about an upcoming informational webinar covering the NC Department of Revenue’s new Business Recovery Grant for businesses dealing with pandemic-related losses. The Downtown Raleigh Alliance, an organization serving local small businesses, hosted an informational webinar earlier this month to discuss the program’s provisions, eligibility criteria and how to apply. We added a link to the webinar in our COVID relief program list.