Coalfield Development’s SEED Fund invests in, incubates, and grows employment-based social enterprise partners in Appalachian Communities. These social enterprises are entities who are not SOLELY motivated by profit – they measure success and failure by the profit generated as well as their positive impact on the local community and environment. Our invested businesses work in line with Coalfield’s mission to grow and diversify our regional economy and provide fulfilling opportunities for those facing barriers to employment (including low-income, unemployed, minority, and recovery from substance use disorder). 

 Successful SEED Fund Businesses focus on creating a sustainable social enterprise that can function without the aid of grants while assisting with on-the-job-training, continuing education, and personal development for their employees, creating a positive impact on the broader community and the environment. Current and past SEED Investments include Solar Holler, Greenbrier Dairy, Parthian Battery Solutions and many more.  

 To expand the SEED Portfolio’s footprint and scale our impact, we have dedicated $250,000  to find and support the best and brightest in Appalachia across three specific categories: Early-Stage Entrepreneur, Existing Social Enterprise, Current Partner Expansion.

SEED Challenge 2023

We are opening applications for this funding during the summer of 2023, with further investigation and due diligence of applicants to occur from the time of application until October 2023. 

Final decisions for investment will be made in mid-October with a winner showcase taking place on October 26th at West Edge Factory in Huntington, WV. Potential winners must be available to present their business or entry at the October 26th celebration. 

Applicant Criteria:


Entrepreneurs who are early in their journey and need funding to help start or scale their idea can apply for up to $50,000 in funding. Eligible applicants have a start-up social enterprise business with less than $100,000 in annual revenue, a concept and plan to launch their business. These applicants must be for-profit entities and reside in the Appalachian Region.


Current social enterprise businesses with over $100,000 in annual revenue and at least 1 full-time (non-owner) employee can apply for up to $100,000 in funding to expand their business. This investment may be used for new equipment, additional employees, or other organizational needs, but must support the sustainable expansion of the company and mission. These companies must be for-profit and reside in the Appalachian Region.

Existing WRAPS

We are also challenging existing partners of Coalfield Development that would like to see a more diverse economy in their local community to identify or develop a social enterprise concept in their local area to help employ individuals facing barriers to employment. These partners can apply for up to $50,000 to help scale an existing social enterprise or help fund a new social enterprise, either within their existing organization or in partnership with a local entrepreneur. These organizations may be for-profit or non-profit and must reside in the Appalachian Region.

Learn more on how to apply: