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Program Overview

NXT|CLT was set up to mentor and promote existing minority-owned small business enterprises (SBE) engaged in private sector development projects. We ensure every business we cater to has the latest and right tools to successfully run and outperform its competitors. We strive to help small enterprises move towards sustainable growth through leadership development, increased business revenues, procurement activities, and internal/external workforce development. NXT|CLT Office of Small Business Development, in association with the program partner Orbital Socket, focuses on building capacity for SBE firms and includes the following engagements:

  • Monthly one-on-one business and personal coaching sessions to focus on the achievement of business goals and milestones.
  • Monthly business progression training sessions to provide participants with the framework to progress on their business timeline and an outline to support each other in completing the program.
  • Quarterly business-to-business networking events to provide access and opportunities to exchange information, ideas, and support with industry-leading businesses and the executives who lead them.

​Participants who successfully complete the program within the given time frame will be allowed to move forward with a workable action plan. We will provide them with the right tactics to leverage and market their business and various tools to manage business growth. Each participating firm will also qualify for $15,000 in financial support to facilitate the implementation of the business goals set throughout the program.

​Program Requirements

Firms applying to NXT|CLT must meet the following requirements:
  • Ethnic minority business owners with 51% or greater ownership of the business
  • $250,000+ in annual revenues
  • One other employee besides the business owner(s)
  • Been in business for at least 3+ years
  • Must have its headquarters in Charlotte
We will engage each participant in the following NXT|CLT activities:
  • In-depth Business Assessment
  • One-on-one Coaching (Business and Personal)
  • Business Development and Growth Workshops
  • Networking Events and Engagements
  • Action Learning Development Sessions

The duration of the program is six (6) months, followed by additional post-program touchpoints and reporting requirements. All participants applying to NXT|CLT must be willing to adhere to and meet all necessary appointments, meetings, workshops, and program evaluations.

How to Apply

We will select Eight (8) SBE firms to participate, with preference given to firms that:
  • Have a plan and capacity to grow business to $1M within three years.
  • Have graduated from AMP UP! or an equivalent business development program.
  • Positive net worth.
  • Current on all state, federal, and local taxes.
  • Current on all licenses, dues, and debt payments.
Applications may be submitted in the following manner:
  1. E-mail all documents in a zip file to The subject line should read “NXT|CLT Application.”
  2. Mail or hand-deliver to: NXT|CLT, Office of Small Business Development, Attention: Eric Lewis, NXT Charlotte. UNCC PORTAL Building. 9319 Robert D. Snyder Rd. Ste 403. Charlotte, NC 28262​
  • Cover letter
  • Application
  • Current financial statements
  • Current business plan and strategic growth plan
  • Two(2) professional letters of recommendation indicating why you would be a good candidate for the program.