In these troubled economic times, small businesses need all the help they can get. Well, an equity-based crowdfunding platform EarlyShares has launched the Small Business Challenge. Businesses can compete for a share of $50,000 in cash and prizes. The Small Business Challenge is sponsored by EarlyShares along with digital marketing agency lonelybrand and online video and display advertising solution company CometAds.
The competition, which was launched on September 1st, runs through October 31st. The three companies that show the most promise will be rewarded. It is open to a wide range of startups and small businesses across a variety of industries, including coffee houses, manufacturers, retailers and specialty apparel designers. The top winner will receive $25,000 in cash and marketing resources. Second and third place winners will be awarded $15,000 and $10,000, respectively.
What do you have to do? Each company that applies to the SMBChallenge must make a pitch for how the Small Business Challenge will help their business create more jobs in the USA. Competitors also need to submit an application on the Challenge website and receive at least 100 votes from their supporters through social media and email campaigns.
“The Small Business Challenge is our way of safeguarding that small businesses, which provide value to the national economy, are not overlooked because of limited funding options,” said Maurice Lopes, founder and CEO of EarlyShares.com, in a press statement.
After the initial voting period ends, 25 companies with the most votes will be named semi-finalists. A judging panel will select another 25 companies that demonstrate the most job-creating potential. After the top 50 semi-finalist companies are selected, the panel will go through a process to select the top 10 finalists. The three prize winners will be chosen by voters between November 2nd and 7th. Will you enter? Good luck to the competitors!