Early Stage

The Aurora Funds, Inc.

The Aurora Funds, based in Durham, North Carolina, is a family of venture capital funds that helps early stage healthcare and information technology companies reach their full potential. Since its founding in 1994, Aurora has invested in more than 60 portfolio companies, resulting in five IPOs and eight M&A transactions.

Calvert Research

Calvert Research, based in Cary, North Carolina, a strategic advisory and equity investment firm with experience in preclinical drug development, invests in companies that acquire rights to early-stage pharmaceutical compounds. Calvert Research assists the companies in further developing the compounds, using a capital-efficient drug development business model to increase their value prior to exit. Calvert Researc covers all aspects related to advancing early stage drug candidates toward human clinical testing.

Cato BioVentures

Cato BioVentures is the venture capital affiliate of Cato Research, Ltd., a global contract research and development organization (CRO). For more than 20 years, Cato BioVentures and Cato Research have partnered with entrepreneurs, academic institutions and a broad base of biotech and pharmaceutical companies to advance a robust portfolio of successful product development programs. Cato BioVentures invests in opportunities during all stages of development and across multiple therapeutic areas.


Cherokee, headquartered in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina, is the leading private equity firm investing in brownfield redevelopment. The firm has nearly $2 billion under management and has invested in 525 properties worldwide. Cherokee is currently investing its fourth fund.

Golden Pine Ventures

Golden Pine Ventures, LLC is a venture capital company that seeks biotechnology and biomedical opportunities developed by leading researchers. Golden Pine Ventures is located in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.

Hatteras Venture Partners

Hatteras Venture Partners is a venture capital firm based in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, with a focus on biopharmaceuticals, medical devices, diagnostics and related opportunities in human medicine. With three funds, the firm has more than $120 million under management beginning with a $3 million pre-seed fund.

Intersouth Partners

Intersouth Partners is one of the most active and experienced venture capital firms in the Southeast, having invested in more than 100 private companies. Intersouth manages $780 million in seven venture capital limited partnerships, making it the largest venture capital fund in North Carolina and one of the largest in the Southeast. It seeks a broad range of investment opportunities in the technology and life science sectors.

NC Innovative Development for Economic Advancement (NC IDEA)

The North Carolina Innovative Development for Economic Advancement (NC IDEA) recognizes that many new technologies are not successfully transferred out of universities and research institutions because of a funding gap between government and private equity support. NC IDEA, located in Durham, North Carolina, offers a grants program to help fill this funding gap and awards selected projects up to $50,000.

Southern Capitol Ventures

Southern Capitol Ventures provides capital and strategic guidance to technology companies across the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic with a focus on software, e-commerce, mobile, healthcare IT and digital media. It is headquartered in Raleigh, North Carolina. Typically, Southern Capitol Ventures invests $500k initially and $1.5 million over the life of a company.

Expansion Stage

Frontier Capital

Frontier Capital is a private equity firm in Charlotte, North Carolina, focused on providing capital to technology-enabled business services companies including software as a service (SaaS), internet and information services, high-value business process outsourcing, information technology and managed services, and communications services. Portfolio companies typically have deep relationships with enterprise clients with predictable revenue.

Pappas Ventures

Pappas Ventures is a Durham-based venture capital firm that invests exclusively in the life sciences industry, biotechnology, biopharmaceuticals, drug delivery, medical devices and related ventures. Pappas invests the largest share of its capital in companies whose lead products are at the Phase 1 or Phase 2 stage of development. However, they continue to have an interest in early-stage companies that have yet to begin testing their products in clinical trials.

River Cities Capital Funds

River Cities Capital Funds manages $400 million of assets focused on venture capital and growth equity investing in information technology, medical devices and healthcare services. River Cities Capital Funds has offices in both Raleigh, North Carolina, and Cincinnatti, Ohio. It invests primarily in expansion stage opportunities with revenues in the $3 – $15 million range.

SJF Ventures

SJF Ventures is a venture capital partnership with offices in Durham, North Carolina, New York and California. It provides $1-$2 million initially with up to $4 million per portfolio company in equity financings ranging from $1-$10 million. SJF goes both solo and syndicates the investment round for companies seeking expansion capital. The group focuses on cleantech, business and Web-enhanced services, and premium consumer products sectors. Representative investment areas include renewable energy and efficiency, recycling, grid and infrastructure technologies, organic and healthy consumer products, digital media and marketing services, and outsourced business services.