KeyStart is getting some media attention this week! InterBusiness Issues featured an article I wrote…
Congratulations to Mobile Mount, the winner of our Keystart Live Pitch Competition!
Keystart has four parts:
- online application
- in-person learning modules
- live pitch competition
- grant administration
Five participants were accepted into the pre-accelerator program from 12 applicants. At this early stage, we define participant as founder team or individual entrepreneur. The entire cohort were of course from Greater Peoria, and include the following: Mobile Mount, Learned Engineering, Craft Coffee Roaster, Small Town Social, and Scious.
After three weeks of learning modules during the Keystart Pre-Accelerator, these entrepreneurs and startup teams presented their business pitches to a panel of judges and the public. Each team had only five minutes to pitch, followed by five minutes of Q&A with the judges. Then, after a tough deliberation, the judges decided which hopeful entrepreneur(s) would be awarded a business development grant of $10,000.
Andrew Hoerr and Wes Hoerr, the founders of Mobile Mount, pitched first, offering a creative product for stadiums that serves both as a smartphone holder for spectators and a place for sponsors to advertise. Next, Allan Dikeman from Learned Engineering explained how their digital Dipstick simplifies oil reads for farmers. Ben Treichel from Craft Coffee Roaster was up next with a roaster prototype for improving and syncing roast profiles. Rachel Judd, Ashley Ried, and Amanda Kitterman from Small Town Social presented their consulting company’s model for small business development in small towns. The final pitch by Andrew Agostini from Scious showed a trade monitoring tool that aims to change the way people invest.
All teams were offered temporary Nest membership as further value for participating in Keystart. We look forward to following progress.
Special thanks to Metamora Fields. They did a great job of hosting and accommodating us, and we were happy to have such a significant event in Woodford County.
Stay tuned to find out when we will have another one!