News & Insights

NC IDEA Foundation Awards $160,000 to Sixteen North Carolina Startups

Spring 2024 MICRO Grant Recipients Selected from One of Largest Applicant Pools;
NC IDEA SEED Finalists Also Announced

DURHAM, NC – April 29, 2024 – NC IDEA, a private foundation committed to supporting entrepreneurial ambition and economic empowerment in North Carolina, announced today that the organization has awarded $160,000 to sixteen North Carolina startups in its twelfth NC IDEA MICRO grant cycle. Since the inaugural cycle in 2018, NC IDEA MICRO has awarded over $1.9 million to 193 young companies across the state.

Through small, project-based grants, NC IDEA MICRO awards $10,000 in funding to young companies looking to validate and advance their idea. The program, piloted in Spring 2018, was created to expand the Foundation’s long-standing SEED grant program to provide funding to younger, promising startups not yet positioned for the Foundation’s traditional $50,000 grants.

“With one of our largest submission pools to date, we have seen yet another competitive cycle and a continued need for funding and support from all parts of the state,” said Thom Ruhe, President and CEO of NC IDEA. “These young companies speak to the economic potential of North Carolina and they represent the great work of our ECOSYSTEM partners to level the playing field for all promising startups,” Ruhe added.

These sixteen NC IDEA MICRO grant recipients were chosen after a three-month competitive application and selection process that drew an impressive 211 applications from across the state:


In addition to announcing the NC IDEA MICRO grant recipients, the finalists for the 37th cycle of the $50,000 NC IDEA SEED grant were recently chosen from the 20 semi-finalists that had been selected in March. These finalists will present before a review panel, and approximately six grant recipients will be announced in mid-May. The ten Spring 2024 NC IDEA SEED finalists are: Druid (Charlotte); Fashivly, Inc (Charlotte); Flexie Inc. (Charlotte); GameFlo Inc (Chapel Hill); Leantime (Charlotte); Moxie (Formerly Academic Insight Lab) (Raleigh); OsRostrum, Inc. (Graham); Roomadillo, Inc. (Morrisville); WheelPrice (Charlotte); and XR Technologies, LLC (Charlotte).

NC IDEA is an independent private foundation committed to equitably empowering North Carolinians to achieve their entrepreneurial potential. Through our powerful combination of competitive grants and programs and a network of strategic partners, we help entrepreneurs when they need it most. NC IDEA’s resources are highly competitive, enabling the Foundation to support North Carolina’s most ambitious entrepreneurs. We believe entrepreneurs transform communities and view our work as a catalyst for positive change. Learn more at