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COLA Resource Directory

We get it: Entrepreneurs, founders and innovators are busy making big things happen—but you can’t do it alone. Don’t miss these hand-picked, proven resources to help unlock, inspire and fuel your bold idea or business.


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GrowCo - Boyd Innovation Center

GrowCo exists to inspire, develop, and support high growth/high tech founders in the Midlands of SC.

Carolinas-Virginia Minority Supplier Development Council

CVMSDC connects MBEs and corporations to drive economic growth. We accomplish this work through four pillars of work: Certification, Development, Connection, and Advocacy.

Sharpen Founder

The Sharpen Founder helps entrepreneurs improve their mental health.

Small Business Caregiving Guide - AARP Family Caregiving

A super helpful guide for small business owners to manage caregiving responsibilities while running their businesses.

gener8tor - gALPHA

Pre-accelerator program for early-stage startups with funding and mentorship

Incumbent Worker Training Program

Develop current staff by applying for Incumbent Worker Training Program to train your employees on new tech/roles

Tech After Five

Legit monthly tech networking event connecting IT professionals, fostering community and meaningful connections.

Midlands Technical College (FastTrac program)

The City of Columbia's FastTrac program helps small business owners navigate obstacles and uplevel their businesses.

South Carolina Business Development (SourceSC)

Connect with top buyers, expand your network, and boost your business with the SourceSC supplier platform.

Green Certification - SC Small Business Chamber of Commerce

The South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce's Go Green initiative promotes sustainability and eco-friendly practices.

Femme X

Femme X is the ultimate professional development and networking community for women, offering workspace, events, mentorship, and more.

Apprenticeship Carolina

Apprenticeship Carolina offers apprenticeships in various industries, including IT and healthcare, and connects employers with training providers.


ReadySC is a resource that helps fill talent pipelines for manufacturing industries and beyond.

Women’s Business Center - Columbia College

Columbia College's Women's Business Center empowers women to rise to the top in entrepreneurship and business

South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce

Your advocate for small businesses, providing resources and lobbying for policy change.

South Carolina's Business One Stop

An official business one-stop shop for registering and managing businesses.

South Carolina Division of Small and Minority Business Contracting and Certification

Certifies minority-owned businesses for state contracting and provides resources for growth and development.

Together SC

A (fun) nonprofit membership organization providing resources, training, and advocacy for the nonprofit sector.

Agribusiness Center for Research and Entrepreneurship

Your center for cultivating innovation and entrepreneurship in agribusiness through mentorship and funding.

USC Columbia Technology Incubator

USC Columbia Technology Incubator is your go-to startup success machine through mentorship, resources, and networking opportunities.

Benedict College Business Development Center

The Benedict College Business Development Center supports women entrepreneurs with training, resources, and networking opportunities.

Columbia Urban League Young Professionals

Columbia Urban League Young Professionals' mission is to empower young, diverse professionals through community involvement.

University of South Carolina Career Center

Make the most of your recruitment efforts by connecting with USC Career Center for recruitment strategies, including job postings and events

The Founder Institute

A global pre-seed accelerator empowering bold entrepreneurs to launch successful technology companies.

Cola Makerspace

Cola Makerspace is that creative community you’ve been searching for with tools, classes, and a workspace for makers like you.

Richland County South Carolina Office of Small Business Opportunity

Find counseling, financing, training, procurement, and regulatory help for local, minority, and small businesses.


Crunchbase is a platform for finding business information about public and private companies.

Venture Carolina

Venture Carolina supports the development of early-stage growth companies throughout the southeast.

SC Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

The South Carolina Hispanic Chamber of Commerce seeks to help all Hispanic-owned businesses in our state grow and thrive through education, advocacy and networking opportunities. The organization also assists in securing microloans.

Midlands Technical College Center for Entrepreneurial Success

The Midlands Technical College Center For Entrepreneurial Success wants to help ideators become their own boss. The center is perfect for people who want to start from the absolute basics and get it right.

USC/Columbia Innovation Center

The USC/Columbia Innovation center is a part of the South Carolina Research Authority, and it is a facility built to enable students to make innovative strides.


SOCO is a workstation that helps entrepreneurs and professionals work. They create a mini ecosystem for innovators and creators to come and execute their ideas.

Meridian Building (Regus)

Meridian Building is a workspace building under Regus, a workspace rental company. Meridian Building is located in Columbia,SC.


Expansive is a workspace development and renting company that creates an ideal environment for innovators and entrepreneurs to create and build.


Converspace is a company established in 2018, and they specialize in helping entrepreneurs and businesses create a professional outlook for themselves.

CoCreate Coworking

CoCreate Coworking is the community of entrepreneurs that women go to to learn how to scale their business from a side hustle to a full-fledged business.

SBA - Small Business Administration

The South Carolina Small Business Administration is a brainchild of the South Carolina District Office designed to support existing businesses in the region.

SBDC Small Business Development Center

South Carolina Small Business Development Center is created to cater for the needs of small businesses and startups in the region.

SCORE Midlands

SCORE Midlands is a network of experienced business professionals that wants to help and empower entrepreneurs on how to scale their businesses.


The South Carolina Research Authority’s objective is to “fuel South Carolina’s innovation economy.”


Scribble is an information repository for entrepreneurs.

Columbia Chamber

Columbia Chamber is a government initiative to support business owners and help empower the business community in the Columbia area to help them achieve their potential.

City of West Columbia

The city of West Columbia focuses on economic and business development.

City of Columbia

This is an initiative of the government of the city of Columbia. They seek to help prospective business owners through every business establishment and scaling stage.

1 Million Cups

1 Million Cups is a brainchild of the Kauffman Foundation, and it is a program designed to enable entrepreneurs in different cities to meet up and share ideas and solutions.

Central SC

Central SC offers resources and events for business startups in a variety of fields. They want to create a business environment that will make South Carolina the hotbed of innovation.

Columbia Women’s Business and Entrepreneur Center

The CWBEC serves to stimulate and retain the entrepreneurship at Columbia College, and to cater to the business needs of women business owners.

University of South Carolina Technology Incubator

University of South Carolina Technology Incubator is a facility built to house and groom entrepreneurs and their ideas till they scale. The incubator enjoys support from the University of South Carolina and offers a wide range of resources that will help entrepreneurs.

Columbia Opportunity Resource

Columbia Opportunity Resource, a nonprofit organization, was founded in 2005 with a vision to build an ecosystem of young professionals where opportunities are shared in the greater Columbia region.

Richland Two Institute of Innovation

The Richland Two Institution of Innovation wants to groom young high school leavers to become renowned innovators and entrepreneurs. To intend to do this by exposing them to advance classes that will improve their critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

Grow Co.

GrowthCo was developed to help businesses located in the Columbia Metro Area. Membership in the program opens the local entrepreneurs to a wide range of opportunities needed for them to scale. The end game of the program is to accelerate the overall development of the entire Columbia ecosystem.

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