ScaleUp WNC Launches in the High Country

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Fifteen growing WNC small businesses selected for first cohort in Boone

(Boone, NC):  Quickly on the heels of Asheville’s entrepreneurial success, Boone is emerging as Western North Carolina’s next innovation center. As such, Mountain BizWorks is very pleased to announce our next ScaleUp WNC cohort of 15 high-potential small businesses is to be based in Boone.

The founders of these 15 companies, competitively selected from a pool of 75 applicants, represent current and emerging leaders creating quality jobs and a vibrant economy across the High Country and greater WNC region. In total, seven different counties are represented in the cohort with companies from Alleghany, Ashe, Avery, Buncombe, Mitchell, Watauga, and Wilkes counties.

“We are excited to host the ScaleUp WNC program in the High Country for the first time,” says Chris Grasinger, High Country Regional Manager for Mountain BizWorks. “These 15 companies are poised for growth and job creation and will have a positive impact on the region in the years to come. We are grateful to Ascent, Boone Chamber of Commerce, High Country Local First, and our many other partners that supported the launch of ScaleUp WNC here in the High Country.”

Mountain BizWorks is a non-profit that supports entrepreneurs through its small business lending and training programs throughout the mountains of North Carolina. Since it’s founding in Asheville in 1989, the organization has made $18 million in loans and assisted with the startup or expansion of over 1,100 WNC small businesses. Mountain BizWorks opened an office in Boone in 2016 to improve access to capital for High Country area small business when bank financing is not available or sufficient.

The ScaleUp WNC cohort six participating businesses are: Appalachian Landslide Consultants (Buncombe); Apple Hill Farm (Avery); Bluebird Exchange (Watauga); Booneshine Brewing Co (Watauga); Carolina Farm Table (Alleghany); Carolina Home Lift (Buncombe); Copper Barrel Distillery (Wilkes); Hatchet Coffee (Watauga); Lighthouse Educational Products (Mitchell); Nordic PC (Watauga); River and Earth Adventures (Watauga); Rose Mountain Butcher Shoppe (Ashe); Stepping Stone of Boone (Watauga); Tsuga (Watauga); and Waste Consultants (Watauga).

As participants in ScaleUp WNC, these small business owners will receive an intensive management training program including mentorship, growth capital connections, and other critical resources to achieve sustained and profitable growth. Cohort members also gain a strong peer CEO network within their cohort and with the ScaleUp WNC alumni.

ScaleUp WNC, is one of 15 original SBA’s ScaleUp America pilot programs nationally. Launched in 2015, ScaleUp WNC will serve two cohorts annually of 15 businesses each through 2019. Mountain BizWorks says the end result of the high-impact initiative will be a diverse and distinguished group of entrepreneurs able to drive innovation and economic development across WNC for years to come. To date, sixty-one companies have completed ScaleUp WNC.

More information about the program—including details about Cohort 6 participants and past alumni, can be found at




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