Clocking In Podcast

Voices of NC Manufacturing, your host Phil Mintz, Director of the North Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NCMEP). We will be interviewing some of the manufacturers who have made North Carolina manufacturing the powerhouse it is today.


Business North Carolina

Production Team

Talent/Host: Phil Mintz
Executive Producer: Teresa Bradford
Producer: Shelby Kimes
Sound/Audio Engineer and Editor: Mike Reep
Graphic Designer: Casey Hembrick

E-09: North Carolina Business in the Era of COVID-19

Business North Carolina: Ben Kinney

In this uncertain time, Ben Kinney from Business North Carolina helps shed light on the current business climate in North Carolina.

According to North Carolina’s Small Business and Technology Development Center, there are 179,773 employer businesses in North Carolina. 98.1% of them are small businesses. As of March 24, 2020, many of those businesses were deemed “non-essential” and had to temporarily close to limit the spread of COVID-19. This has resulted in mass layoffs and some businesses are facing the threat of having to permanently close their doors.

For this interview, I sat down with Ben Kinney. Kinney has been a publisher at Business North Carolina (BNC) since 2003 and started his career in advertising sales working for The News & Observer. He is a 1992 graduate of North Carolina State University with a BA in History. Kinney is also the publisher of Southpark Magazine.

BNC is the largest business industry magazine in North Carolina. Located in Charlotte, the magazine has provided relevant business news to North Carolinians for over 35 years. BNC partners with NCMEP every year to help host the annual manufacturing convention, mfgCON. Over the last several weeks, BNC has been reporting on the effects the pandemic is having on North Carolina businesses.

On this episode of Clocking In, we discuss the current manufacturing climate, how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting business, how the small business loan included in the government stimulus package can help NC businesses and more.



Phil Mintz

Phil Mintz is the executive director of NC State Industry Expansion Solutions (IES) and director of the North Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NCMEP). At NCMEP, Phil drives outreach to NC manufacturers, builds relationships with federal and state leaders and coordinates efforts to drive profitable manufacturing growth in the state. He also leads the broader IES extension operations outreach unit of regional managers, technical specialists and business development leaders providing business engagement, assessment and improvement tools. This includes statewide peer networks, ISO 9000 quality management systems, Six Sigma, Lean manufacturing, environmental services, and health and safety solutions.

Ben Kinney

Ben Kinney has been a publisher at Business North Carolina since 2003 and has worked for The News & Observer and South Park Magazine. He graduated from North Carolina State University in 1992 with a BA in History.