Recognizing the opportunity the Wells Fargo Golf Championship will bring to the Cape Fear Region in May 2017, the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce is devising a regional economic development marketing initiative designed to show visitors to the golf event that this region is a great place to start or relocate a business. To achieve its regional marketing goal, the Chamber is in the process of coalescing all the region’s economic development organizations to participate in the marketing effort.

The Chamber is very appreciative of the resolution passed by Wilmington City Council last evening that essentially supports such a regional initiative.  During the Chamber’s InterCity Visit to Charleston, South Carolina last year, attendees learned what a positive effect a regional approach to economic development can have. The goal is to have all of our area economic development organizations work together to get potential prospects to take a look at this region, and then, if they choose to do so, pitch their own jurisdiction as the best place to locate the business.

On August 30th, the board of directors of the Wilmington Chamber’s flagship initiative, Cape Fear Future, approved $100,000 for the regional marketing initiative as seed money to help raise matching dollars from the public and private sector.  Last week the Chamber released a Request for Proposals (RFP) to member marketing firms to propose a plan to carry out the marketing initiative.  The selection of a marketing firm will be made in mid-October.

Initial meetings with Wilmington Business Development have indicated strong support for the concept.  The Wilmington Chamber will also seek support from all chambers of commerce in the tri-county area to secure their participation in the regional marketing effort that will kick-off during the Wells Fargo Championship, as well as help them find ways to make the best use of this opportunity.