Startup NC Launch - Idea / Project Proposals

North Carolina has always been a leader in building a better future — from the creation of the country’s first public institution of higher education to the establishment of the RTP and beyond, we have led the effort in making sure our citizens are equipped and ready to tackle the problems of tomorrow.

North Carolina is a hub of intellectual growth and spirit that embodies the entrepreneurial drive. We are a leader in creation of companies that change tomorrow from SAS to IContact. NC is on the path to be the entrepreneurial hub of the south.

To continue this path of success, Startup North Carolina (an official region of the Startup America Partnership) is launching on August 20th in NC and this is your first chance to shape its roadmap. The launch party will include everyone from inspiring entrepreneurs, to government and business leaders.

Submit your ideas / projects and then spread the word to get votes!

  • Be creative
  • Be ambitious
  • Be realistic

Here are a few broad categories we’d love to see the ideas address, but feel free to think outside the box:

  • Access to capital
  • Entrepeneurial education
  • Events
  • Mentorship
  • Miscellaneous
  • Removing unnecessary barriers

The top submissions will have a chance to present in a short, TED / Ignite style talk at the Startup NC launch event on August 20, 2012

Voting ends at midnight (EST) on August 15th. Each person has 10 votes to cast for their favorite ideas / proposals.

How can we improve the NC entrepreneurial ecosystem?

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  1. Entrepreneurial Governing Body

    North Carolina is a great place to be an entrepreneur. There are a slew of fantastic organizations dedicated to helping everyone from the college student with an idea, to an established professional looking to capitalize on a recent discovery. I think having a very informal governing body could go a long way. A few have tried this, though their organizations are not solely focused on this. This would enable an improved calendar of events that would be coordinated in an intelligent way rather than have nights with competing events. Additionally, it would act as the hub for information for finding…

    142 votes
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      8 comments  ·  Events  ·  Admin →
    • Video Roundtable w/NC Entrepreneurs

      There are numerous Startup success stories in NC from SAS to iContact to Alphanumeric Systems and everything in between. While Silicon Valley has done a great job making rockstar mentors out of their success stories, highlighting them in magazines, in video interviews, and on talk radio, NC has yet to bridge this media gap and promote our entrepreneurial success stories in a way that future generations of visionaries can really latch onto, learn from, and follow.

      In order to solve this, I'd like to host a bi-monthy luncheon with successful entrepreneurs and investors, videotape these discussions, and make them available…

      114 votes
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        5 comments  ·  Events  ·  Admin →
      • Create a crowdscourcing/crowdfunding website dedicated to StartupNC

        Create a crowdscourcing/crowdfunding website dedicated to StartupNC

        100 votes
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        • Monthly Casual Dinner with angels

          Early stage startups need capital to grow, but aren't always sure how to find the right funding. Angel investors want to meet the newest and smartest entrepreneurs in a casual setting.

          What if there was a casual monthly dinner event for angel investors and entrepreneurs to share updates, get feedback, and discuss the possibilities...?

          * This is just an example, but feel free to up-vote and submit your own ideas, more or less involved and extensive than this one.

          55 votes
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          • Intrapreneurship & cofounder sourcing from local "big" corps

            In the triangle we are home to some awesomely huge corps: IBM, Cisco, SAS, etc. In the other corner we've got a bubbling tech startup scene. Yet the two groups rarely collaborate. I'd like to see events to get these groups to mingle more.

            People at large corporations have financial stability (a paycheck!) and useful biz connections. Entrepreneurs have the drive and desire to take risks and think outside the box. This could be a good combination.

            How does this take shape? From the startup side, it could be as simple as making a deliberate outreach to corps and their…

            38 votes
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            • Cross-cultural collaboration and problem-solving

              Some of the biggest entrepreneurial opportunities exist in developing economies. Understanding their problems and collaborating with international entrepreneurial communities could be a great way to expand the Triangle/NC innovation footprint, while also giving our local community a fresh perspective on how we approach collaboration and innovation.

              33 votes
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              • Successful Entrepreneur Open Office Hours

                Every young entrepreneur is trying to build the next great business. One of the best ways to accomplish success, is to seek out those who have previously done the same thing and learn from them.

                My idea involves local, successful entrepreneurs making the effort to be available for young entrepreneurs to spend time with them. These conversations are not forced, promoted, or involve an exchange of money. The young entrepreneur is able to ask questions, seek advice, hear lessons learned, and even relive the glory days alongside the accomplished entrepreneur. No registering, no requirements - just show up and learn.

                30 votes
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                  0 comments  ·  Mentorship  ·  Admin →
                • LEAN STARTUP BOOTCAMP

                  So many people (myself included) get caught up in the enthusiasm of a great idea and the flurry of events that normally follow: Ordering business cards, getting polo shirts with your company logo, dropping money on a website. The list goes on and on. But a business transaction really only needs 4 things (listed in order of importance): 1 willing customer, 1 product, an agreed upon price, and a means of delivery.

                  Because the ideas behind lean startup are new, and because startup capital may be little to none for most entrepreneurs, this approach to business can be the make…

                  29 votes
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                  • More Effectively Leverage the Multi-Generational Talent Pool

                    'Entrepreneurship' is now very much in vogue, but the concept of creating a sustainable business operation from idea through execution has been a big part of the American culture since its founding. Sometimes it is forgotten that every generation's striking success is built upon foundations laid by prior trailblazers whose ideas were cutting-edge at that time. Each new generation must master new tools and technology, and the pace of change quickens every year. Still, one constant of the human learning process is that progress involves a combination of 'vision' and knowledge gained by real-world experience.

                    The startup ecosystem is inhabited…

                    17 votes
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                      1 comment  ·  Mentorship  ·  Admin →
                    • Funding Endowment

                      Traditional funding says that investors keep the cash/reward from a good startup. An interesting twist to this would be to create a funding endowment (non-profit) where successful investments lead to more access to capital for entrepreneurs instead of simply a bunch of rich VCs.

                      Nothing against VCs, and they can/should still be part of the picture, but if the endowment invested alongside VC/Angel rounds, it would create more direct NC opportunities upon exits. Knowing that the success of other startups will help the startup community as a whole in a more direct way would increase the community vision of supporting…

                      13 votes
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                      • Bi-Weekly Entrepreneur Workshop

                        Many of us have beautiful ideas, even world-changing ones! We have a plan, a mission, and a vision but how to bring it to life and not break the bank or hurt our image? What if all we need is a little free teaching and hands-on experience so that we're not over before we begin? Think of it as a preparation, "free to make mistakes" stage. And let's face it, the younger generation (students to 30 somethings) has an unparalleled hunger and willingness to risk more for their visions. They typically have less to lose and more to give. Win…

                        11 votes
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                          0 comments  ·  Events  ·  Admin →
                        • The Charlotte Shapers - http://charlotteshapers.org/ - are working help with Shape Charlotte - http://charlotteshapers.org/our-projects/

                          The Charlotte Shapers - http://charlotteshapers.org/ - are working help with Shape Charlotte - http://charlotteshapers.org/our-projects/. We'd love to learn if it makes sense to discuss this at the upcoming event.

                          11 votes
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                          • Create a training program (or orientation) for mentors

                            Mentors have been held up as one of the most valuable resources that new entrepreneurs can tap to help launch their ventures on the right footing and overcome early challenges. Business accelerators and incubators sell their mentorship programs as one of their greatest assets.

                            But what makes an experienced entrepreneur a good mentor? One that has succeeded multiple times at launching businesses? One that has failed multiple times? One who is a good teacher/coach regardless of the outcomes of his/her ventures? Everyone knows that achieving personal success in life does not necessarily translate into the ability to help others reach…

                            9 votes
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                              0 comments  ·  Mentorship  ·  Admin →
                            • Central Resource to Communicate / Educate

                              What if...

                              There was a central resource, well-designed and easy-to-access, that contained content relevant to entrepreneurship with a particular focus on NC entrepreneurs?

                              This resource aggregated content / submissions from contributors / mentors / entrepreneurs?

                              This resource helped educate entrepreneurs in such a way as to communicate key ideas, core concepts, or availability of programs (educational, mentor-based, funding-based, etc)?

                              This resource helped indicate which organizations / resources to pursue given certain criteria input by the entrepreneur 'in need'?

                              That, ultimately, we could leverage Startup America Partnership's national influence / media contacts, and have key pieces of content (success stories, interviews,…

                              8 votes
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                              • Create a "hub & spoke" system

                                Invest resources (time, talent, treasure) into bedroom communities around innovation cities. The ripple effect will allow entrepreneurship to spread to increasingly rural communities.

                                8 votes
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                                • Connecting points between businesses/people who have problems and those who can solve them.

                                  It would be nice to have a place/forum where those people working and living in this diverse area who are running into problems could describe those problems and partner with people who have the ability to solve them.

                                  7 votes
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                                  • Create a mobile application product to unite Angels & Entrepreneurs

                                    Mobile is THE biggest connector existing in technology today. Our smartphones are never more than four feet away from us at any given time! A mobile app could create an instant community, allowing people to engage, evolve their business ideas (as entrepreneurs) and identify smart entrepreneurs. The app could also be a repository for events, job opportunities, partnership opps, product feedback, crowd sourcing ideas. Adding gamification concepts to a tool like this would add to adoption (idea was conceived at lunch today with a leader in Enterprise Gamification and Marketing Firm focused on Start-up community)

                                    7 votes
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                                    • Serve mainstreet industry startups rather than just high tech

                                      We need to offer more assistance to people who start businesses that serve broader needs through traditional industries.

                                      6 votes
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                                      • 5 votes
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                                          0 comments  ·  Mentorship  ·  Admin →
                                        • Industry / Sector Knowledge and Connections Subgroups

                                          I have found the most beneficial feedback is not just from otentrepreneurseurs, but from corporate busindevelopmentment folks who can listen to your idea and help lead you in the right direction. Likewise they are a virtphone bookbook of industry contacts that may be helpful down the road.

                                          4 votes
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