A TRADITION OF INNOVATION here in the North Carolina mountains causes art and invention to glide seamlessly together in the shape of new technologies, new foods, new energy, new ideas about wellness. In serving Western North Carolina, AdvantageWest – recognized as one of the most innovative economic development partnerships in the US – catalyzes enterprise that springs from the pioneers, the groundbreakers, the trendsetters for which these mountains are so well known.
Pending Closure of AdvantageWest
After 21 years of serving Western North Carolina, we regret to inform you that AdvantageWest is closing soon, due to the loss of state funding.
But there's a silver lining: Thanks to the partnership of other organizations in the region, the following programs and initiatives continue:
* Blue Ridge Food Ventures continues under its new "parent," WNC Communities. The website remains here and the phone number is unchanged: 828-348-0130.
* Advantage Opportunity Fund and ScaleUp WNC: These entrepreneurial funding and development programs have been adopted by Mountain BizWorks and continue under the direction of Matt Raker, who has joined the MBW staff. In addition, the Outdoor Gear Builders of WNC trade association founded in part by AdvantageWest also continues with assistance from Mountain BizWorks.
* WNC Film Commission's databases of film locations and crew were transferred to the NC Film Office, which also manages all inquiries.
* The Certified Entrepreneurial Development© program, which had previously been suspended, has been revitalized by Creative Economic Development Consulting.
* The "AdvantageWest Collection" of physical and digital files, news clippings, annual reports, and other items of historical significance are now located at the Western Regional Office of the State Archives of North Carolina and can be accessed by anyone seeking information on AdvantageWest or researching general economic development in the region.
If you need additional information, please contact us here. Thank you again for your partnership and support. It has been a privilege to serve the citizens of Western North Carolina.