Small Business News

Entrepreneurs Make Their Pitch
Published: Monday, December 10, 2018 8:00 am
By: Shaun Sappenfield

 

For the seventh consecutive year, StartUp Jefferson City offered five entrepreneurs an opportunity to pitch their business ideas for a chance at winning a $5,000 cash prize to support future growth plans.  At the Chamber’s annual Business and Lifestyles Expo, five local entrepreneur teams pitched their startup business plans.  The competition was hosted by StartUp JC and the Jefferson City Area Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with Rural Missouri, Inc., a provider of SBA small business loans.

Rural Missouri, Inc. (RMI) was once again the main sponsor of the Pitch It & Win It competition as their mission of improving the economic well-being of individuals, businesses and communities fit the competition’s overall goal.  Without RMI’s support, StartUp JC would not be able to offer this unique opportunity to the local community and is critical to the success of the competition. Zola Finch and her staff are very supportive of our efforts, as we both are pursuing economic growth and stability within our areas of focus.

In all, the StartUp JC committee selected five teams of entrepreneurs and invited them to make their business pitch to a panel of judges. Business ideas ranged from a mobile Italian shaved ice retailer to a membership-based coworking space.  Each of the pitch participants provided a detailed synopsis of their business plan, accompanied by a visual (PowerPoint) overview, all of which addressed seven specific criteria points consistent with a business plan outline – Problem, Solution, Market Opportunity, Business Model, Competition and Sustainable Advantage, Management Team, and Financial Outcomes. 

This year, the committee provided a monetary award of $5,000 for the business idea that provided the greatest overall economic impact to the community.   “The committee felt comfortable with one overall cash award this year, as we prescreened and interviewed eleven applicants to narrow the field to five,” remarked Leslie Tanner, Central Bank, and StartUp JC committee member.  “We were pleased with all the applications received and narrowing the field to five was not an easy task.” 

The team of Sarah Bohl and Missy Creed-McFerron walked away with the $5,000 prize with their Campus Coworking Space business idea.  “Sarah and I could not be more thrilled with our good fortune, as the cash award will be applied directly to the renovations of our coworking space,” said Missy Creed- McFerron, Owner of Dogwood Social and co-partner in the Campus Coworking Space endeavor.  “We firmly believe there’s

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