Wilmington Business Start-up Community
The Wilmington business community is a vibrant setting attracting entrepreneurs in the Wilmington area and investors from around the US.
There are 2 organizations working to initiate business formation and development including the Network for Entrepreneur’s Wilmington (NEW) and Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (UNC-W). These organizations assist entrepreneurs starting up businesses with resources including mentoring, legal assistance, patents, financial/investment and business development activities. They regularly meet several times per month arranging educational key resources with everything from accounting knowledge to ”How Angel Investors screen companies seeking investment?” Many serial Angel investment firms regularly visit the meetings conveying their insights and focus on investments. Several investments have been made in companies within this year.
Wilmington is a perfect environment to create a start-up with UNC-W as a source of talent as well as our area as a primary lifestyle choice with the ocean and its related opportunities and very reasonable cost of living within Wilmington.
Presently, there are 3 Start-up incubators in Wilmington, including the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship CIE-(http://uncw.edu/cie/), TeK Mountain-(http://www.tekmountain.com/), and the Marbionic Center (Marine Biotechnology Center-http://mbcoi.net/about-mbcoi/).
The CIE has about 10 office spaces with most of the offices occupied by UNC-W student and faculty start-ups.
Tech Mountain is co-sponsored by Castle Branch which is independent of UNC but selects technologies interesting to Castle Branch owners. Castle Branch is a background check company that was a start-up about 10 years ago. Tek Mountain has 20-30 spaces allotted to start-up companies.
The Marbionic Center primarily focuses on start-ups with bio-chemistry backgrounds. They have room for about 10-15 companies. The Marbionic Center has significant infrastructure of chemical analysis equipment within the facility making it an excellent residence for Bio-chemistry based business start-ups. Entry into the Marbionic Center is a bit more stringent than the others. Next Glass is a local success story that is located at the Marbionic Center.