Wilmington is home to brilliant entrepreneurs, rebellious thinkers, and caring activists who want to be a force for change. We’ve rounded up a list of our favorite entrepreneurial ventures and startups in Wilmington; take a look below!
1. First Founders – First Founders Inc. is the brainchild of Garry Johnson III, who had the vision of creating an equal playing ground for aspiring entrepreneurs. His rapidly-growing venture does this by providing founders of all backgrounds with valuable business resources, like training, software, funding, and networking opportunities.
2. Wilminvest – Founders Joel Amin and Bryce Fender created Wilminvest under the belief that ALL Wilmingtonians deserve affordable, safe housing. This “social impact real estate” startup has won thousands in funding and is on its way to shaping the city by improving the way the Wilmington community lives.
3. NERDiTNOW – If you love watching Shark Tank, you might recognize these guys! On top of being one of the best and most accessible electronics service providers around, Markevis Gideon’s innovative venture has done incredible charitable work, donating over 7500 computers to school systems and underprivileged communities!
4. CompassRed – One of the most successful startups in Wilmington, CompassRed has become a name in the data analytics industry. Their brilliant team makes the incredibly useful and complex world of data science extremely accessible and usable for their clients.
5. Planting to Feed – A social venture founded by a #PeopleofWilmDE alum, Jessica Wescott, P2F aims to bring fresh, healthy food to anyone in Wilmington in need of a meal. They established the city’s first community fridges, stock pantries with produce from local gardens, and work with organizations like the Teen Warehouse to make it all happen!
6. Code Differently – Code Differently sees that the future is in the hands of young people who can code. Their programs are designed to make computer science education accessible to everyone, fun and community-based, and empowering. They provide a direct link between the city’s youth and the tech industry they will someday dominate.
7. Second Chances Farm – Ajit George’s highly-decorated vertical farming initiative has taken Delaware by storm, bringing the freshest produce you can possibly buy to Wilmington and surrounding areas. The best part? All food is grown by citizens returning to society from incarceration, teaching entrepreneurship and providing them a “second chance”. Their produce is also used by local restaurants such as Le Cavalier, Bardea, and Ciro Food + Drink. See our blog about them here , and featured video below.
8. The Athlete Book – College athletes are some of the hardest working people around… which is why they make the best hires, according to the Athlete Book. This innovative Wilmington startup aims to connect athletes with potential employers through virtual-and-live career fairs and courses.
9. Social Contract – Social Contract wants to reinvent the way nonprofits can succeed. They bring together leaders from the community, government, and businesses to elevate the funding and operations of nonprofits in order to create social change that is tangible, measurable, and efficient. Their talented staff is always in the know about what’s happening around the city.
10. Operation Rolling Turkey – Founded by local chefs who wanted to give back during Covid, Operation Rolling Turkey sees the massive problem of food and health insecurity and combats it with the power of the city’s community. Along with free hot meals, their frequent pop-ups feature outreach from local health initiatives and services, as well as the city’s Police and Health Departments.
11. Kool Kolored Kid Generation – Another familiar face from #PeopleofWilmDE, Randall Law uses his artistic vision and eye for fashion to lead this bold startup brand. He aims to reclaim the acronym KKK to embody empowerment for young people of color everywhere, all while constantly giving back to the community in his volunteer work.
12. Tapp Network– was recently selected by TechSoup Global to be their exclusive Digital Transformation Partner serving 1 million nonprofits in 200 Countries. Locally. Tapp is the team behind Wilmington’s It’s Time Campaign and is one of the fastest growing technology firms in the region attracting national clients such as TrafficCast, Denso-Toyota, Aviation Gin, The Census, Nonstop Wellness, Microsoft, and Revlon.