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Business Plan competition marks its 10th anniversary

CCBC’s Center for Business Innovation is proudly celebrating its 10th anniversary and will host the final round of its 10th Annual Business Plan Competition on Feb. 4.

CCBC’s Center for Business Innovation is proudly celebrating its 10th anniversary and will host the final round of its 10th Annual Business Plan Competition on Feb. 4. Ten finalists will compete for $62,500 in seed money to help launch and grow their businesses. The awards ceremony will be aired 8 pm, Monday, Feb. 6 on Facebook Live:

Since 2013, CCBC’s Annual Business Plan Competition has helped launch 47 new businesses and distributed $329,980 in seed money. Over the last 10 years, more than 4,200 people have engaged with CBI’s business programs and 2,772 people have earned college and continuing education credits in a variety of entrepreneurial courses and workshops. The competition is funded by the Philip E. and Carole R. Ratcliffe Foundation.

During this year’s competition, each of the 10 business owners will work with their mentors and pitch coaches, Keith and Rebecca Klein Scott of TALLsmall Productions, as they prepare to make presentations before a panel of judges in the final “shark tank” round.

“It is exciting to see so many people with entrepreneurial mindsets working to turn their ideas for new products and services into businesses,” says Dennis Sullivan, executive director of CCBC’s Center for Business Innovation, which manages the competition. “This is especially important because 93% of the many entrepreneurs we work with are from underserved communities, who don’t have the same access to capital and resources as they try to build better futures for themselves and their communities.”

The 10 finalists, all CCBC students and alumni, were among 173 who participated in workshops leading up to the competition with 28 submitting business plans to compete. Out of the 10 finalists, seven are women, 90% are age 30 or older, 70% are minorities, and 80% of the businesses are owned by either women, minorities or veterans.

First place winner earns $20,000, 2nd place earns $15,000, 3rd place earns $10,000, 4th place earns $7,500 and 5th and 6th place winners each earn $5,000. Winners also receive mentoring and coaching support, a scholarship for CCBC’s Small Business Ownership course and an opportunity to work with the Business School’s top students who assist with market research, website development, marketing and consulting.

This year’s finalists (in alphabetical order) are:

Jon’ll and Matthew Boyd, Boyd Cru Wines (Silver Springs, Md.) Boyd Cru Wines is a Black family-owned wine brand that believes wine is a common language but speaks to each person differently.

Evangula Brown, Accountability Training, LLC, DBA EB Consulting and Training (Owings Mill, Md.) EB Consulting and Training is a Maryland-based company that provides civilian oversight and hate-bias consulting and training.

Stacey Dennis, Ancient Arts, LLC DBA Whispers in My Ears (Parkville, Md.) Whispers in My Ears is a sexual health education program aimed at adolescents and young adults.

Michael Guarraia, MG Custom Lighting, LLC (Owings Mills, Md.) MG Custom Lighting provides handmade industrial-style lamps using reclaimed industrial parts and machinery.

Brittany Jones, The Mixx Studios and Event Center, LLC (Gwynn Oak, Md.) The Mixx Studios and Event Center is a one stop event shop offering mobile and onsite event packages from quality and vetted vendors.

Angel Magruder, Hold ya Lane, LLC (Cockeysville, Md.) Hold ya Lane is a trucking company hauling freight across state lines that also provides parking services for truckers.

Staci Newman, KiddieLane, LLC (Baltimore, Md.) KiddieLane is a software-as-a-service company that provides cloud-based online scheduling and business management software applications for the underserved after-school activity and enrichment program industry.

Julie Palmer, Sweet Magoo, LLC (Pikesville, Md.) Sweet Magoo is a gourmet frosting company selling all-natural, delicious frosting in artisanal flavors.

Herschel Ruben, Compressent LLC (Baltimore, Md.) Compressent is a company that designs ergonomic products that accommodate the unique ways our brains work.

Rodney Winmond, VERO Security Solutions, LLC (New Freedom, Pa.) VERO Security Solutions is a security company that utilizes off-duty police officers as security officers and provides firearms and security-related training.

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