Are you looking to grow your business with new marketing skills and more cash? Then you should consider participating in the Dream Big Grow Here program, through the Center for Business Growth and Innovation at the University of Northern Iowa. Dream Big Grow Here is an established award-winning grant program with a proven track record of success helping small business learn to start and grow their business.
How it Works:
From December 1-January 31, we will accept online applications for the Dream Big Grow Here contest. Participants can submit an application to one of the following six industries: Ag Innovation, Hospitality/ Restaurants, Manufacturing/BioScience, Information Technology, Pre-Revenue, and Retail/Professional Services. Applications consist of a few short answer questions and a required 1-2 minute video.
After the applications are submitted, from February 8-February 12 voting will be open and you, your friends, and family members can vote for your business dream. Five finalists from each industry will advance to the Industry Pitch Offs. The entry with the most online votes in each industry will automatically advance. The remaining four finalists will be decided based upon the quality of their applications through a judging team at UNI. An announcement will be made on who the industry finalists are, on March 7th
Industry finalists will have two months to prepare a 6 minute pitch about their business. In April, each finalist will attend a practice pitch session and get critiques and feedback from Venture Net Iowa. Industry finalists will pitch off at EntreFEST, for a chance at winning a $5,000 grant for their business. This event will be open to the public.
Dec 1 - Jan 31
Feb 8 - Feb 12
Finalists Selected: March 7
Pitch-Off Coaching: April
Industry Pitch-Offs & Winners Selected at EntreFEST: May 18-20
Why Should You Participate?
If you’re looking to start, grow, or work on your business, this is the program for you! Through the contest, you’ll be introduced to state elected officials and have opportunities to receive exclusive services from some of the best organizations in Iowa helping entrepreneurs. Participating will also give your business wide-spread publicity and enhance your skills in social media, promotion, and business pitching. Check out what 2013 winner, Tom Mulholland, had to say about his experience with the contest.
Want to Learn More?
On November 12, from Noon-1 pm we’ll be hosting a free webinar on helpful tips and tricks to remember when applying for Dream Big Grow Here. Register today and visit the Dream Big Grow Here website on December 1st to apply! For additional information or questions about Dream Big Grow Here, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.