Print
Entrepreneurs

Bunker Labs To Launch Wilmington Chapter In February

By Johanna Cano, posted Jan 4, 2019
Bunker Labs, a nonprofit that provides resources for veteran entrepreneurs, will launch a Wilmington chapter in February as part of its plans to grow in the state.

There will be a launch event Feb. 13 at Ironclad Brewery, where city leaders and partners in the community will be introduced, said Dean Bundschu, Atlantic regional executive director for Bunker Labs.

As a nonprofit, Bunker Labs provides online courses, networking opportunities and other resources to help veterans start their businesses. The organization is made up of a network of veteran entrepreneur volunteers.

“Locally, we will have three volunteer city leaders, who will focus on three core areas: entrepreneurship, community and operations,” he said.

The Wilmington chapter will have monthly Bunker Brews networking events and eventually run a CEOcircle Entrepreneurship program, where CEOs gather to get resources to further grow their companies.

The official chapter is opening in Wilmington because of the entrepreneurship environment present here, Bundschu said.

“According to USAA, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and IVMF, Wilmington is the No. 6 rated city in the entire U.S. for veteran entrepreneurs,” he said. “Additionally, Jim Roberts did a fantastic job building and connecting the Wilmington entrepreneur community through Network for Entrepreneur in Wilmington. His WALE angel group also helped four local veteran-run business raise funding. So Bunker launching a formal chapter there is an extension of his work.”

Roberts was the previous community development director for Bunker Labs, and he also ran a monthly Bunker Brews networking event in Wilmington.

Bunker Labs will address the need to support veteran entrepreneurs in Wilmington by providing free programs to military veterans and military spouses who are interested in starting a business, Bundschu said.

In addition to Wilmington, Bunker Labs will open chapters in Charlotte, Fayetteville, Greensboro and Asheville this year with support from NC IDEA Foundation.

NC IDEA was awarded a grant as part of its Ecosystem Partners program that will fund the launch of the five new chapters in the state.

The University of North Carolina Wilmington’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship will collaborate with the local chapter, he said.

While there are many programs in the U.S. designed to support aspiring entrepreneurs, they are heavily concentrated in a few major metropolitan areas and most charge some fee and/or expect to take equity in a company, Bundschu said.

“These programs can be inappropriate for military veterans or military spouses who have nothing more than an idea or for those who don’t really know if entrepreneurship is the right path for them,” he said.
Ico insights

INSIGHTS

SPONSORS' CONTENT
Frankjolly liveoakprivatewealth

Roaring Market, Rocky Economy

Frank Jolley - Live Oak Private Wealth
Chris coudriet

Share Your Feedback, Perceptions About Workforce Housing And Housing Affordability

Chris Coudriet - New Hanover County Government
Burrus rob headshot 300x300

Internal Auditors Can Serve A Key Role In Tough Times

Robert Burrus - Cameron School of Business - UNC-Wilmington

Trending News

In Downtown Wilmington, First Commercial Tenant Opens At River Place

Cece Nunn - Sep 22, 2020

Save Our Hospital Files Suit On NHRMC Deal

Vicky Janowski - Sep 22, 2020

At Mayfaire, Burney's Sweets & More Opening Soon

Jessica Maurer - Sep 23, 2020

Judge Weighs Temporary Delay Request On NHRMC Vote

Vicky Janowski - Sep 23, 2020

Rumcow Owners Launch New Restaurant On Grace Street

Jessica Maurer - Sep 23, 2020

In The Current Issue

Spotlighting This Year's MADE Awards

Several of this year’s MADE win­ners will participate in the upcoming virtual WilmingtonBiz Conference & Expo....


Biz Expo Keynote: Naudé Oversees NCino's Rapid Growth

CEO Pierre Naudé, who took the helm of Wilmington-based nCino in 2012, is a keynote speaker for this year's WilmingtonBiz Conference & Expo....


Biz Expo Keynote: North Carolina's Race For The U.S. Senate

U.S. Senator Thom Tillis and challenger Cal Cunningham will speak at the 2020 Wilm­ingtonBiz Conference & Expo....

Book On Business

The 2020 WilmingtonBiz: Book on Business is an annual publication showcasing the Wilmington region as a center of business.

Order Your Copy Today!


Galleries

Videos

2020 Leadership Accelerator: Virtual Workshops for Real Leaders
2019 Health Care Heroes
August 26, 2019 Power Breakfast: A Healthy Sale?
2019 WilmingtonBiz Expo Keynote Lunch - CEO, nCino, Pierre Naude`