A business plan competition that will reward several budding entrepreneurs with nearly a half million dollars in business loans is being launched by Queen’s School of Business (QSB) and the Prince Edward/Lennox and Addington Community Futures Development Corporation (PELA CFDC).
“The business plan competition is a great opportunity for students who might have an idea but don’t have the financial backing to get their business off the ground,” says Yolande Chan, director of The Monieson Centre at QSB.
The competition is open to all faculty, staff and students from Queen’s. Each team must include one Queen’s student—the competition is intended to show students ways they can apply their knowledge and skills after graduation.
Teams submit their ideas for starting a business in either Prince Edward County or Lennox and Addington. The top three teams will each receive $150,000 interest-free loans to implement their plan. The Canadian Youth Business Foundation has also offered $45,000 loans to the runners-up.
The competition is aimed at boosting the economies of the two partner counties. The competition occurs in several phases. Teams can submit their 30-second videos—also known as elevator pitches—right now. The video should outline the main business idea.
A full report—including details of the idea, the team members, and the marketing and financial plans—is due early in 2011. Representatives from PELA CFDC and experienced entrepreneurs will pick the top six submissions.
The final six teams will go before a panel of entrepreneurs, faculty, and community representatives to present their business plans. The panel will award the top prizes of three interest-free, five year, $150,000 loans by the end of March 2011.
The business loans were made possible because of a successful application to the Community Adjustment Fund, which was established last year as part of Canada’s economic stimulus plan.