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StartWheel Newsletter


In this edition, watch the future of entrepreneurship in Hampton Roads, learn about the latest startup success stories, and find the best networking event in the area.

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What We Do is Hampton Roads' hub for news, events, and resources related to entrepreneurship and innovation. We partner with other organizations in effort to support and cultivate the regional entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Are you a small business with a recent success story? Let us know!

There's lots going on in the HRVA entrepreneurship world! Make sure your email host doesn't clip our message short by clicking to view the entire message.

Fervent Four Show

The future of entrepreneurship is bright! The Kempsville Entrepreneurship and Business Academy joins the show to discuss their startup experiences. Watch the full show as well as mini clips on our website or YouTube page.

Join us every Thursday 11:00am to Noon on our FB Live!

Region Roundup

Nancy Grden named First Executive Director of the Hampton Roads Maritime Collaborative for Growth and Innovation

Grden previously served as co-chair of ODU’s Economic Development Catalyst Task Force and has a track record of leadership for major strategic and innovation initiatives across multiple sectors.

Read the full article
Activation Capital Giving Nearly $300,000 to Two Organizations to Support Entrepreneurs and Startups

Activation Capital said Monday that it will give nearly $300,000 in grants, including at least $100,000 to 757 Collab, an organization based in Hampton Roads that helps support startups and entrepreneurs through programs such as 757 Accelerate, 757 Startup Studios and 757 Angels.

Read the full article
First Set of Finalists from Start Peninsula Micro Pitch Announced

The first set of finalists for the 2020 Start Peninsula were announced following an online competition. The finalists are 4.0 Inventions, Hottrok, AGENZ by TAO Agency and Barre By the Bay.

Read the full article
Gov. Northam Announces more than $1.7 Million for Projects Assisting Virginians on Peninsula Affected by Covid-19

Northam announced Monday that the grants will go to James City and York counties and the city of Williamsburg to assist local governments and community partners in meeting the needs.

Read the full article
757 Based Instant Teams Announces Academy

Instant Teams set out to create a full circle workforce development solution for military spouses tied directly to outcomes of remote employment.

Read the full article
Why do You Like the Songs You Like? Startup Aims to Find Out

Secret Chord was one of 20 companies selected to participate in the Belgium-based Wallifornia MusicTech virtual accelerator program for music tech startups over the summer. 

Read the full article
SVT Robotics Revolutionizes the Industry with Introduction of New SOFTBOT Platform

SVT Robotics introduced its SOFTBOT™ Platform today allowing companies to expedite the adoption and deployment of robotics within their warehouses and manufacturing facilities in a matter of days or weeks, rather than months or years.

Read the full article
The Federal Reserve is Looking for Small Business Input

The questions are best answered by an owner or key financial decision maker and will take about 10 minutes.

Survey responses will be aggregated for research and analysis.

Read the full article
Apply now to pitch your business / business idea at Start Peninsula

Applications are open to pitch (idea). The top pitchers from the Oct 13th micro pitch event will compete on Nov 6th for 1 of 3 $5,000 prizes. All events will be held on Zoom. 

Apply to pitch
Warehowz Raises $1.2 Million as Need for On-Demand Warehousing Surges

Warehowz announces the close of a second series seed funding round totaling $1.2 million. The raise will fuel sales and partnership efforts and enable further development of Warehowz’s cloud-based technology platform.

Learn more
Virginia Beach Man Brews Up New Business Opportunity after Losing his Job during Pandemic

Jarod Foreman collected unemployment for about two months, but then he realized he had a thirst for a home-based business.

Learn more
Fueled by Virtual Learning, Rubin Provides Nearly 100 Schools with Communications Curriculum

As a provider of learning materials for skills like email etiquette, phone etiquette and interoffice communication, Rubin has, since March 2020, led a series of free webinars for K-12 and higher ed instructors across the country and offered sample activities for virtual learning.

Learn more
Troopster to Hold Virtual Run Fundraiser for Deployed Service Members

Military nonprofit organization, Troopster®, will hold a week long virtual run fundraiser, The ‘Murican 5 Mile’, September 17-23rd to fundraise for deployed Air Force service members overseas.

Learn more
Other Must-Read Headlines You May Have Missed

Event Spotlight

October 13th, 2020
6:00 - 8:00pm

Micro Pitch Competition

3 Minutes to pitch your business!

The top pitchers in this event will qualify for our main Start Peninsula event on November 4th, which will award 3 finalists a $5,000 prize. All other finale participants will walk away with $500.

Learn more
Tell us your news!
StartWheel is your consolidated source for startup and early stage small business news!!!
We're looking for stories to share:
- Are you a new business?
- Are you are disrupting the status quo? 
- Did you just expand your business? 
- Share your press release with us so we can share it across the region! 

Email your Press Release here

Post COVID-19 Resources

We understand there is a TON of information flooding your inbox regarding COVID-19. In an effort minimize the information flow and standardize the information being shared, we have partnered with the Hampton Roads Small Business Development Center (HRSBDC). We recommend following websites for the most current information.

COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan Application 
Economic Injury Disaster Loan Information from SBA
Hampton Roads Chamber Recovery Resource Center
Hampton Roads Small Business Development Center Recovery Resources
IRS information for small business/self-employed/medium sized employers
Loan program overview
PPP Loan Forgiveness Overview
SBA webpage for the Paycheck Protection Program
Virginia Small Business Development Center Business Recovery Center
US Chamber Information
Virginia Small Business Development Center  

If you would like individual counseling or assistance for your business, please contact the HRSBDC at or call 757-664-2596 to schedule an appointment. 

Small Business Grant Opportunities

Many localities and organizations in Hampton Roads are offering grant opportunities for small businesses. All you have to do is apply! Click on a link to learn more details and eligibility requirements. An up to date list of grant opportunities is kept on the StartWheel website.

Accomack County Grants for Small Businesses
Accomack Watermen Relief Funds 

Chesapeake Small Business Covid-19 Recovery Grant (NEW)

CDBG Business Grant (Williamsburg, York, Poquoson) (NEW)

FedEx Support Small Grants

For Hispanic and Latino Businesses 

For workers in the food and beverage industry who are in a crisis of any kind 

Hello Alice Small Business Grants 

LISC (Local Initiative Support Coalition of Hampton Roads) Small Business Emergency Assistance Grants 

Norfolk VA Grant (NEW)

Rebuild! VA (NEW)

Suffolk EDA Small Business Grants 

Suffolk Executive Offices Covid relief
The Red Backpack Fund for Female Entrepreneurs 
VA 30 Day Fund Forgivable Loans up to $3,000 

York County Grants

York CARES Grant (NEW)

The Fervent Four Show

Did you know that only 4% of businesses ever exceed $1 million in annual revenue? The Fervent Four Show is designed to give you the tools and information you need to become part of the 4%.

Tune in to the Fervent Four Show every Thursday from 11:00am - 12:00pm on the StartWheel Facebook page. The Fervent Four Show is brought to you by StartWheel and the Hampton Roads Small Business Development Center. 

The past few weeks, we've chatted with:

Joe Bucci, Entrepreneurship Professor at Regent University

The Entrepreneurship and Business Academy at Kempsville High School

Jaynee Sasso, Founder of SeniorRuns

Gary Plaag, Founder of Couragio Consulting

Candice Gallmeyer, Director of Business Operations at Escape Room Virginia

Savannah Bolin, Regional Director of Gather

Want to be a guest on the Fervent Four show? Apply here

October Virtual Events

View All Events

October 1st, 2020
11:00am - 12:00pm

The Fervent Four Show

Hosts Tim and Zack are joined by Xerxes Nabong, who shares how financial planning has changed for individuals as a result of Covid-19.

[FB Live]

October 1st, 2020
5:00 - 6:00pm

Happy Hour: Vibrant Shore Brewery

Sometimes after a long day, you just need a drink and a way to forget the to-do lists, quarterly goals, and never-ending inbox list.


October 2nd, 2020
9:00 - 10:00am

Coffee with CIT GAP Funds

Participants are introduced to a broad spectrum of entrepreneurial business concepts and the resources available to access start-up capital, technical assistance, contracting opportunities, and more.


October 2nd, 9th, 2020
10:00 - 11:00am

Ask a Bookkeeper

1701 has partnered with Kate Johnson of Heritage Businesses Services to offer Ask a Bookkeeper Sessions n the ViBe Creative District!


October 8th, 2020
11:00am - 12:00pm

The Fervent Four Show

Join Tim and Zack as they discuss hot topics with entrepreneurs across the Peninsula.

[FB Live]

October 8th, 2020
7:00 - 8:00pm

The IncuHub's Virtual Trivia Night

It’s just like an in-person Trivia Night, but we play over Zoom. This Virtual Trivia Night is on October 8th at 7:00pm. You can RSVP by getting a tickets.


October 9th, 2020
By Appointment

Free Virtual Small Business Meetings

Free small business counseling services from the Hampton Roads SBDC - available to any and all small businesses.


October 13th, 2020
12:00 - 1:00pm

Fundraising in VA: An Insider's Guide

This session will provide a behind-the-scenes look at fundraising options for Virginia’s entrepreneurs. Join fund managers, angel investors and other experts as they offer tips and tricks to get in the “room where it happens” and be set up for success when seeking investments.


October 14th, 2020
12:00 - 1:00pm

Home Based Business 2020 Lunch and Learn Series: Cybersecurity Session

Join us the 2nd Wednesday of each month from Noon – 1:00 pm for the Home-Based Business Lunch & Learn series. This is a virtual event.


October 14th, 2020
1:00 - 2:00pm

October Webinar Lunch & Learn: Small Business Resource Roundup

Small businesses have been hit especially hard during the pandemic. Learn about new regional, state and national resources.


October 15th, 2020
11:00am - 12:00pm

The Fervent Four Show

Hosts Tim and Zack are joined by Blake Luse, Director of Ferguson Ventures. Hear how Ferguson Ventures is investing in entrepreneurs across the Hampton Roads region, as well as Blake's take on entrepreneurship and venture capital.

[FB Live]
Hosting an event? 
You can upload your events to our calendar for the region to see! 
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How to attend or get tickets

Questions? Ask here
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Sponsors & Affiliates

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