Upcoming Events

September 2018

Learn the secrets of startup success from a serial entrepreneur and top executive. Kenneth Paulus has consulted with thousands of companies, raised over $30 million in funding and helped launch ten new ventures in the past seven years. This interactive course will lean on his personal experiences, successes and failures and also involve local guest lecturers and experts in relevant fields. Course outline

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Here’s what you’ll learn by enrolling:

  • The best ways to evaluate market opportunities
  • A proven method to test concepts and business models
  • How to leverage Lean Startup practices
  • The fundamentals to launch and manage a business

You’ll also have an opportunity to present your pitch to win:

  • $1,000 seed money for your business and 3-month’s free rent at Advent Coworking

More info here

Healthtech Women Charlotte

Blockchain: Can the Technology Underpinning Bitcoin Benefit Healthcare?

Tuesday, September 18th@ 5:30pm-8:30pm
Myers Park Area

A case study event unlocking the strategic business value of blockchain across industries and its potential application in healthcare.

The Greater Charlotte Healthcare Executive Group (GCHEG) is a supporting partner. Additionally, this is a ACHE Qualified Education event and ACHE members may receive 1.5 credit hours for attending.

Please note that the event is catered and food and beverages will be provided.

The event will kickoff with a 30 minute networking session, followed by a 1.5 hour interactive case study discussion. Brief pre-read materials will be distributed to registered attendees in advance of the event. The agenda is as follows:

Speakers and Moderators

  • Michael Johnson: Director, Innovation Engine at Atrium Health
  • Jimmie Lenz: Principal at The Financial Risk Group; Adjunct Professor at the University of South Carolina
  • Robert Reddick: Co-Founder of Gate Staff, Inc.; Blockchain enthusiast
  • Cathy Olieslaeger: Business Development Manager at Agio
  • Sharnesha (Nesha) Brentley: Co-Founder of KANKYO
  • Khari Baker: Co-Founder of KANKYO; Appointed Mecklenburg County Information and Technology Services Committee Member
  • Chris Kittredge: Serial technology entrepreneur; Blockchain enthusiast
  • Claudia Douglass: Managing Director at Deloitte
  • Susan Rucker: Assistant Professor at Queens University of Charlotte

Space is limited to 80 attendees only. Reserve your spot now.

If you see yourself in health across biotech, pharma, medical device, life sciences, healthcare, and health IT, we would love to meet you! Alternatively, if you are excited about the space, we welcome you to join us!

More info and RSVP  here

Packard Place Public House: Keg Side Chat with Haley Bohon

Wednesday, September 19th@5:30pm-7:30pm
Packard Place, 222 S. Church St. Charlotte, NC

Public Houses are where people used to gather to grab a pint and talk about events of the day. It was how people communicate, collaborate and shared ideas because they were public and open to everyone. Over time, they shorten the name to Pubs. Join us for our Monthly Packard Place Public House – for pints, networking, and sharing what’s going on with you.

This month’s Keg-Side chat will be with Haley Bohon, founder and CEO of SkillPop. The chat will begin at 6pm and last as long as it takes to finish a beer.

“SkillPop is a community-driven way for people to access in-person classes on a variety of subjects. Our teachers are talented, local professionals with skills to share, and classes are held pop-up style in interesting areas of the community.

We strongly believe that the best learning happens in-person, and we strive to create environments where trying a new skill is social, accessible, and engaging.”

More info here

Charlotte Chamber Young Professionals Startup Matchmaker

Wednesday, September 19th@5:30pm-7:30pm
Innovate Charlotte, 229 South Brevard St., Charlotte, NC 28202

The Charlotte Chamber and Innovate CLT are hosting a YP Startup Matchmaker event designed to connect entrepreneurs, innovators, investors, and organizations in an effort to further advance the Charlotte entrepreneurial ecosystem. This event will bring the business community together to share ideas and resources that can accelerate entrepreneurial success. In addition to networking, there will be a few informal sessions on the following topics:

  • Build your team or grow your network
  • Learn strategies for driving innovation
  • Get expert advice on raising capital
  • Practice your elevator pitch

More info here

Startup 101: Business Model Canvas

Thursday, September 20th @5:00pm-8:00pm
Hygge Coworking at Camp North End, 1776 Statesville Ave., Charlotte, NC 28206

Want to gain a better understanding of your value proposition, market, and business model?

Join us for a 3-hour introductory startup workshop focusing on Lean Startup Methodology and the Business Model Canvas. This workshop will guide you through the various steps within the Business Model Canvas including opportunity assessment, value proposition, and customer discovery. By the end of the session, you will have a working canvas specific to your idea and/or startup, as well as a stronger understanding of how to continue the customer discovery process and insight into the Charlotte innovation community.

This session is perfect for those with:

  • An idea looking to validate the business potential
  • A tech-enabled, scalable startup (pre-incorporation or incorporated)
  • A startup in need of a business model canvas “tune up”

Event includes dinner, a Business Model canvas and all of the supplies needed to complete your canvas.

This workshop is ideal for ideation and conception stage entrepreneurs who are launching a scalable, tech-enabled startup. It’s not intended for small business owners, consultants or service providers.

More info here

NC Healthcare Innovation Conference

Friday, September 21st@ 9:00am-5:00pm
UNC Charlotte Center City, 320 E. 9th St., Charlotte, NC


The NC Healthcare Innovation Conference is a non-profit event held by The Society of Physician Entrepreneurs to help promote interaction between medical professionals and the healthcare innovation community.

The event itinierary includes:

Networking breakfast and lunch.

Symposium on topics such as healthcare economics, marketing, and customer discovery. We will also talk about medical IT, device, and pharmaceuticals development.

Introduction to 20+ new healthcare innovations.

Invitations to special networking events Thursday and Friday evening.

RSVP  here

Case Study: How to Accelerate Growth, Scale to Optimize Profitability and Maximize Value

Tuesday, September 25th@8:15am-11:30am
Gaston College Kimbrall Campus, 7220 Wilkinson Blvd., Belmont, NC 28012

Glen Raiger, Sovren Group, and Dan Brooks, Rhino Assembly Co.

A Case Study on leveraging resources, strategic planning and execution to Accelerate Growth, Scale to Optimize Profitability and maximize value for a recap or exit.

A company that went from $16 million to $100 million in 6 years and how they did it.

An Experiential Case Study of the Journey of Rhino Assembly that grew from a 10-person firm to a 120-person firm in four years and realized a valuation far in excess of what the strategic plan projected. It was about doing the necessary execution and taking the advised risks to invest and scale to achieve a maximized recap valuation. There will be real life stories shared about this process- what worked, what didn’t, etc.

Glen Raiger, a three-time owner who successfully built, scaled and sold his companies and transitioned to an Advisor, mentor, Consultant and Executive Coach to other owners and CEO’s, was hired by Rhino Assembly to do a strategic growth plan and a deep dive into the company to help execute and implement on a daily basis for a year. Rhino Assembly owners, Dan and Lief, followed the plans and listened to the coaching resulting in a tremendously successful outcome.

Topics discussed:
• Selecting the Right Advisor(s) and Trusting the Advisor(s)
• How Core Values and Mission Statement drive Company Culture and Success
• Preserving the Entrepreneurial Spirit with Growth
• Building a Top Level Sales Force
• Growth by Acquisition
• Execution and Risk

More info and RSVP  here

City Startup Labs 5th Anniversary Celebration

Friday, September 28th@7:00pm-11:00pm
Grace on Brevard, 219 South Brevard St., Charlotte, NC 28202

City Startup Labs, Charlotte’s Entrepreneurs’ Academy for African-American millennials, is celebrating 5 years of creating a new class of entrepreneurs. We’re celebrating by bringing back some of our graduates for a “Where are they now?” spotlight. We’ll be introducing our new class of entrepreneurs, and dancing the night away to live music, a DJ, and spoken word.

RSVP here

October 2018

1 Million Cups Charlotte

Wednesday, October 3rd@ 8:30am-10:00am
CPCC Professional Hall Building,  Charlotte, NC

Are you a business owner, entrepreneur or business advisor? Join 1 Million Cups Charlotte and plug into the largest entrepreneurial community in the Queen City!

You’ll meet like-minded entrepreneurs and business owners who understand just how difficult it is to start and grow your own business. Discover new ways to grow and new opportunities for partnership.

Membership is free, here’s what you’ll gain:
• Connections in an entrepreneurial community of over 800 members
• Insight on how other businesses are positioning and promoting themselves for growth
• Opportunity to use and refine your “elevator pitch” for your own business via networking
• Clarity and inspiration through Think Tank activities to brainstorm and problem-solve as a group
• Opportunities for collaboration and partnership
• Free coffee and great conversation with entrepreneurs and business advisors

More Details and RSVP here


Wednesday, October 10th@8:00am-9:30am
Packard Place, 222 S. Church St., Charlotte, NC

Join us Wednesday, October 10th for our IDEA Pitch.

IDEA PITCH is a special format for PitchBreakfast with IDEA Fund Partners participating as panelists that occurs once a quarter. IDEA Fund Partners is one of the most active seed and early stage venture investors in NC and throughout the Southeast. We use almost the same recipe as our usual event, but instead of the full presentation, our panelists want to see a 2 minute elevator pitch. As Lister Delgado says, “if you can’t get my attention in two minutes, you’ll never do your full presentation!” We’re very proud to have this event in the Charlotte area.

PitchBreakfast gives startups an opportunity to practice their investor pitch in a safe and supportive environment. Four companies will each pitch for 2 minutes (no slides) followed by 12 minutes of Q&A and feedback from our expert panel. Interested in pitching at PitchBreakfast? Apply on our website here (http://www.pitchbreakfast.com/pitch/).

Audience members will find value in hearing how other startups pitch, what types of feedback (both positive and negative) they receive, and of course seeing some of Charlotte’s up-and-coming startups while networking with other entrepreneurs and startup community leaders over breakfast. The pitches begin at 8:15.

For startups looking to pitch, this is an amazing opportunity for:

• Seed-stage and series A level tech startups looking to raise a round of funding

• Early-stage tech startups looking for some feedback on their business model (must at least have MVP)

This is NOT for:

• Entrepreneurs with just an idea and no development yet

• “Lifestyle” companies (ex. bars/restaurants, crafts, hobbyists, MLMs) -“A lifestyle business is a business that is set up and run by its founders primarily with the aim of sustaining a particular level of income and no more; or to provide a foundation from which to enjoy a particular lifestyle.”

Interested in pitching at PitchBreakfast? Apply on our website here (http://www.pitchbreakfast.com/pitch/).

RSVP here

BIG: Reaching Your Customers Online with Google

Thursday, October 11th@8:00am-10:00am
Gaston College-Kimbrell Campus, 7220 Wilkinson Blvd. Belmont, NC 28012

Presented by Google, SBTDC, TechWorks, and BIG

Partner Organizations: Gaston Chamber and Montcross Chamber

Parking: Free and easy parking for all registrants. Parking details will be sent with your registration confirmation.” 

Includes Free Google Swag!

The workshop will be presented by the engaging Demming Bass, Official Speaker for Google’s Get Your Business Online Program. Don’t miss this insightful opportunity.

Anyone who wants to learn new marketing skills or reach potential customers online will learn about search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM), content marketing, and social media marketing. The result? Demming Bass, Official Speaker for Google’s Get Your Business Online Program, will unveil a strategy that can get your organization, business, or event in front of your target audience.

Learn how customers find your business online and how to promote your online presence with search engine optimization (SEO) and online advertising. Attendees will be introduced to tools to help you run your business online, including Google Analytics, Google Trends, and more.

In this session, you’ll learn how to:
1. Create and verify a free Google My Business listing
2. Optimize your website for search and mobile
3. Use search engine marketing opportunities for your business
4. Benefit from free online tools to grow your business
5. Learn simple but effective tips for content and email marketing

Demming Bass Bio:


8:00 am – 8:30 am   Registration and Networking- continental breakfast and coffee

8:30 am – 8:45 am   Opening Remarks

8:45 am – 10:00 am  Interactive Presentation by Demming Bass

Program Cost:

BIG Members, TechWorks, SBTDC – Free
Gaston College Faculty, Staff, Students: Free

Guests: $20, includes Google swag bags!

(You will be sent an invoice by BIG)

Registration Required

Thanks to our Host Sponsor: Gaston College

More info and RSVP  here

Monthly BIG Ideas Exchange: Give and Take

Friday, October 19th@8:30am-11:00am
Location TBA

8:30 am to 9:00 am Continental breakfast and networking
9:00 am to 11:00 am Book Discussion

Free to Members and Guests of BIG: RSVP to terry@bigcouncil.com or register below.

Book: “Give and Take: Why Helping Others Drives Our Success” by Adam Grant



A groundbreaking look at why our interactions with others hold the key to success, from the bestselling author of Originals.

For generations, we have focused on the individual drivers of success: passion, hard work, talent, and luck. But in today’s dramatically reconfigured world, success is increasingly dependent on how we interact with others.

In Give and Take, Adam Grant, an award-winning researcher and Wharton’s highest-rated professor, examines the surprising forces that shape why some people rise to the top of the success ladder while others sink to the bottom. Praised by social scientists, business theorists, and corporate leaders, Give and Take opens up an approach to work, interactions, and productivity that is nothing short of revolutionary.

This thought provoking discussion will be co-facilitated by Douglas Grant, Ethos Business Advisors, and Ralph Henderson, OmniChannel Productions.

As a reminder, you don’t have to read the book to attend! Most do not, and we always have a very engaging discussion!

During this roundtable we’ll:
· share our own experiences in this area in our businesses
· share best practices from our own personal experience or from industry thought leaders
· share ideas on how to improve the area within our businesses to fuel growth

Free Parking: Park across the street in the Burger & Co/ Rhino Deli parking lot

More info and RSVP  here

November 2018

Southeast Venture Conference

Save the Date: Wednesday, November 14th

The Southeast Fintech Venture Conference is an all-day event showcasing the top fintech companies in the Southeast. From true startups to hometown fintech success stories, this day serves as a demonstration of the latest and greatest in fintech innovation. Be sure to join the prominent VC and growth firms, fintech entrepreneurs, and financial services executives in Charlotte, NC at the Southeast Fintech Venture Conference in 2018.

This is also Demo Day for Class 9 of Queen City Fintech, which features fintech startups from all around the world who will have just spent eleven weeks incubating in Charlotte and the Southeast ecosystem.

More info