get to know CED

The Council for Entrepreneurial Development (CED) was formed in 1984 by a group of visionary business leaders dedicated to empowering the successful creation and growth of entrepreneurial companies in North Carolina.

our mission

CED connects entrepreneurial companies with high-growth resources to accelerate business growth. We are committed to generating $20 billion in new enterprise value in North Carolina by 2034. Our approach is comprehensive, inclusive, and focused on building a dynamic and thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem.

what we do

High-Touch Support and Education CED acts as the connective hub for entrepreneurial success, providing tailored support, education, access to capital, and crucial connections. Programs like Connect to Capital have facilitated over 10,000 investor introductions since 2014, enabling entrepreneurs to secure vital funding.

Regional and Global Reach Our region-centric approach builds bridges that extend far beyond North Carolina. Global investors recognize the talent and potential here and actively participate in our entrepreneurial community. Programs like our annual Venture Connect capital conference spotlight 180 companies, providing a platform for investment and growth.

signature programs

  • GRO: Over 1,250 companies have completed our education programs including our current GRO Incubator, which offers rich educational content and network connections
  • Mentorship: Our team pairs serial founders with growth-stage entrepreneurs, providing invaluable guidance and support. Additionally, peer groups provide support and guidance from founders, scaling businesses together.

Diversity and Inclusion: In 2023, 42% of our supported founders were female and/or persons of color. We aim to reach 50% across all programs by 2026.

impact and growth

In 2023, CED supported 668 startups, provided 5,709 hours of support, and facilitated 954 curated introductions. Our commitment to diversity and inclusion has seen a significant increase in the number of companies we support and the diversity of their leadership. We are on track to achieve our ambitious goals through targeted investments in education, capital access, and ecosystem connectivity.

our community

CED is powered by a resource network of founders, operators, and subject matter experts dedicated to scaling startups. Our collective efforts are driving significant progress, making North Carolina a premier destination for innovation and entrepreneurship.

join us

As we celebrate our 40th anniversary in 2024, we invite you to be part of our journey. Together, we can continue to foster innovation, support founders, and shape the future of our ecosystem.

For more detailed insights, explore our 2023 Impact Report available as a digital magazine on this page.

start now Get Support

Would you like to know how to get support for your startup or scaling company?

Would you like to support the entrepreneurial ecosystem in North Carolina?

More Resources

Learn more about why North Carolina is a great place to start and grow a company, invest in growing companies, and stay connected through CED.