Forbes calls Asheville ‘Unexpected Source Of Innovation’

Here’s an excerpt from the Forbes article:

Perhaps best known as a craft beer and independent restaurant mecca, and as a haven for musicians and artists of all genres, Asheville, North Carolina, frequently makes appearances on lifestyle-oriented “Top 10” or “Best of” lists. It is also a remarkably “green” community – some 80 percent of its 86,000 residents recycle.

Nevertheless, freshly brewed ales, live music, and regular recycling can’t provide enough economic opportunity to sustain a rapidly growing and desirable community for everyone who is flocking to this mountain town. Accordingly, local leaders in Asheville sought to build an infrastructure to enable businesses to start, grow, and thrive here – but with a local sensibility. …

Accordingly, a new investor network was launched earlier this year: the Asheville Angels. The invitation-only group is comprised of local businesses leaders to help mentor and fund budding companies. …  The group’s structure borrows from a similar, five-year effort in Greenville, SC: the Upstate Carolina Angel Network. That neighboring community’s network has been in business for more than five years, and has driven $10 million into its startup community. It provided Asheville’s leaders with a blueprint for its own process of curation, screening, and due diligence review of startups to consider bringing under the Venture Asheville umbrella.

About Jake Frankel
Jake Frankel is an award-winning journalist who enjoys covering a wide range of topics, from politics and government to business, education and entertainment.

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