Block Recap 2023 banner graphic (Partner with Genesis Block in 2024!)

With the support of our generous sponsors, the Genesis Block Labs team made incredible strides this year in advancing entrepreneurship and innovation in southeastern North Carolina communities. We have worked diligently to bring stakeholders together to create collaborative environments that spur the launch, growth, and scaling of underrepresented entrepreneurs. We have made significant waves in advancing economic development and entrepreneurship for all through the wide range of business development services we offer to entrepreneurs, small business owners, corporations, municipalities, and governmental agencies.

Thank you to the stakeholders who made our advancements in 2023 possible!

What We Accomplished in 2023

Conversations to Contracts

Genesis Block hosts a quarterly Conversations to Contracts event with several local government agencies and corporate partners. The goal is to connect minority-owned businesses with contracting opportunities and to provide them with the resources necessary to strengthen their ventures while simultaneously diversifying the supply chain.

FY 2022-23 Impact:

  • 180+ attendees at the Black Entrepreneurship Week event in partnership with the Carolina Small Business Development Fund.
  • 500+ attendees at Conversations to Contracts events.
  • 40+ minority-owned businesses attended quarterly Conversations to Contracts events.
2023 Conversations to Contracts events statistics (Partner with Genesis Block)

Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week

Every fall during Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week, we host a special edition of our quarterly Conversations to Contracts event:

MED Week event statistics, partner with Genesis Block

Block Eatz

Genesis Block partnered with Cape Fear Community College to establish Block Eatz, a food hall incubator on the north campus. The mission of Block Eatz is to support local food entrepreneurs from ideation to commercialization with quality training, food production facilities, and brand development.

FY 2022-23 Impact:

  • Block Eatz held its grand opening ceremony on September 19, 2023 at the McKeithan Center.
  • 1200 Students/faculty and the general public now have access to fresh, affordable meals daily.
  • This is the first food hall incubator in southeastern North Carolina.
  • Projected $375,000 in revenue.
Block Eatz Click to Join the Facebook group

Follow Block Eatz on Instagram and Facebook!

Genesis Block Academy

Genesis Block successfully completed the development of two entrepreneurial training courses to provide technical skills training to support small business owners. We partnered with Granit Training to develop the Jumpstart Academy and Wits Begin curriculum. The curriculum is specially designed to support community entrepreneurs, minority-owned firms, and local businesses.

FY 2022-23 Impact

7 Jumpstart Academy Companies

  • London”s Dream, Owner Ashley Lynch
  • Sip and Shop Boutique, Owner Marchelle Carmichael
  • Kendall Passmore, Owner Re-raveled Apparel
  • No Pork on My Fork, Sissy Griffin and Dennis Gardner
  • Gracefully Chic Photography, Owner Quasheera Gamble
  • Be Sweet Bakery, Tria Brown
  • The Collectionist, Owner Tim Brown

8 Wits Begin Companies

  • Be Mo Kind, Owner Charity Tuttle
  • Pumped and Popped, Owner Latoya Hansley
  • Paella Fusion, Owner Alexis Perry
  • Soul Love Lux Boutique, Owner Sondrea Lee
  • Helping Hands of Cape Fear, Owner Jamie Stokely
  • Queen Herbal Teas, Owner Adreinne Arrington Kenion and Alex Kenion
  • Sweet Reads, Teresa Jones

8 Companies with Business Expansion 2022-23

  • Speller Street Films–Wilmington on Fire II release in November 2023 
  • Honey Head Films- A Song for Imogene releases in November 2023 
  • Avonya’s Blends-Seasoning partners with national retailer (Lowes and others) 
  • Creators Printhouse-Tripled capacity w/expansion on Oleander Dr
  • Paella Fusion-New business location at Block Eatz
  • Elaborate Outings-Expanded into Corporate Events
  • Helping Hands of Cape Fear-Successful expansion of services
  • Queen Herbal Teas-Distributed at UNCW in Campus Hall Dining
Photo collage of participants and Genesis Block team members at Shark Tank at the Shore event, August 2023. Partner with Genesis Block

Planning for the Future

Grow and expand the Block Eatz Food Entrepreneur Ecosystem through:

  • Monthly Chef’s Vision events
  • Expansion through the Southeast with new food hall locations
  • Expansion of Block Eatz catering program

Convert Conversations to Contracts:

  • Create contracting opportunities
  • Grow diverse-owned businesses
  • Deliberate intent to connect diverse-owned businesses to commercialization opportunities through the certification process

Build a ready, willing, and able disaster response database:

Establish a credible and vetted database for disaster recovery in partnership with the North Carolina Department of Transportation

Why Partner With Us?

Become a Community Partner and equip Genesis Block with the essential resources to nurture the Entrepreneur Class. This partnership offers you a unique opportunity to make a direct, positive impact on underserved entrepreneurs, including minority and women-owned businesses, as well as small business owners in your local area.

Benefits for Community Partners graphic (reasons to partner with Genesis Block)

Our goal is to dismantle barriers to entry and foster inclusive entrepreneurship within our community. Partnering with Genesis Block is a crucial step towards guaranteeing every community member equal access to entrepreneurial opportunities.

With your support, we can make it another great year!

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