Calling All Entrepreneurs: $5,000 Prize Available for Your “Big Idea”

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Where would we be without the dreamers, innovators, inventors and big thinkers whose ideas drive business? Here in the Quad-Cities, we know that more than 80 percent of all economic growth is home-grown. And we want to see our entrepreneurs thrive even more.

Quad Cities Fast Pitch is a new business idea competition open to anyone in Scott or Rock Island counties with a great business idea or dream. We are looking for bright ideas in the categories of Manufacturing/Industrial; Web/Technology; Retail/Service and Restaurant/Entertainment.

The grand prize winner will receive $5,000 cash and thousands of dollars worth of in-kind business services. Three category semi-finalists will receive $1,000 cash and in-kind services.

The Quad Cities Fast Pitch competition is a joint effort between the economic development departments from the cities of Davenport, Bettendorf, Rock Island and Moline and several other partners, including: Ignite Quad Cities, the Iowa and IllinoisSmallBusinessDevelopmentCenters, the University of Illinois Extension, Iowa State University Extension, AugustanaCollege and WQAD-TV. The Riverboat Development Authority is sponsoring the cash prize for the contest.

Quad Cities Fast Pitch is a three-stage competition. The first stage is an open application period, where contestants submit their ideas in writing to the contest committee in one of four categories: Technology/Web, Manufacturing/Industrial, Restaurant/Entertainment and Retail/Service. The application period is Feb. 10 through March 15. Applications can be found at the Quad Cities Fast Pitch website at quadcitiesfastpitch.com.

Five semi-finalists from each of the four categories will be chosen to present at the Quad Cities Fast Pitch live event, hosted by AugustanaCollege and WQAD.   Semi-Finals and Finals Event: April 5, 2014, 10:30 a.m. – 5 p.m., Gävle Room in Augustana College’s Student Life Center. Semi-finalists will give a 10 minute live presentation to the judging panel in the semi-final round between 10:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Four category winners will be selected from those presentations and will be required to present live in front of an audience beginning at 4 p.m. The grand prize winner will be selected out of the four finalists.

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