Startup investing in the US reached a record high of $130 billion in 2020, behind innovative companies like Instacart and Stripe. And if the optimism at CEDNC’s https://cednc.org) recent Venture Connect is indicative of the broader investment climate, 2021 is shaping up to be even better for startups in North Carolina.
Throw in the recently passed $1.9 trillion stimulus package, continued low interest rates, and possible additional infrastructure spending, and the picture brightens considerably for startups well positioned to help solve the problems facing our county, and nimble enough to reflect the new ways of doing business.
Certainly, we all know about virtual conferencing, social distancing and WFH. But there is more to learn. Do you know how your customers buying habits have changed, where they shop, how they get information, how they pay? Do you even know how to reach your customers anymore?
Instead of going to the store to buy your product, are they buying online? Is that where they are getting information about your product and your competitors? Are they paying now with venmo, zelle or paypal? Does your company accept those? Is the buying experience rewarding, or are they frustrated and yearning for some other way?
Are you poised to capture that value now? Once the pandemic ends – will consumer habits go back to the way they were, or have they changed permanently? What about institutional customers? How about attracting and retaining talent?
There is certainly a lot of money floating around to help our country rebound. But that doesn’t mean you get it automatically. The groups doling it out like EDA, NCIdea, SBA, and the angel and venture communities, will still need to be convinced you understand your customer, the problem you are solving, have a model to deliver value to them, and a way to get paid. You know, the fundamentals!
For those companies that understand this, this crisis presents an opportunity for significant growth, as crises always do. And if you need help figuring it all out, stop by or call the Hub.
Executive Director, Thomas Entrepreneurship Hub
Cell: 781 424 8525, Email: Thomas.Hall@uncp.edu
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