At the tradeshow and awards event held Tuesday, April 12 at Okanagan College, the winners of the Enterprize Challenge were announced. The competition started with 15 entrepreneurs pitching ideas to a panel of judges. Through the judging process, 7 did a final presentation, and on Tuesday the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners were announced.
“The judges had a very difficult job of deciding the winners – all of the finalists made excellent pitches,” said Leigha Horsfield with Community Futures.
Matt Parks with Parks Sustainable Design Build was awarded third prize for his business that offers design and construction of high performance, sustainable, and energy efficient new homes and renovations. Parks won a business services package worth over $5,200.
Second place went to Diane Kelm who developed an online directory for holistic practitioners. Healing Arts Finder is for practitioners who need affordable, targeted marketing and advertising services. Kelm took home a prize package valued at $8,500.
Top prize was given to Jaye Coward, owner of Farm Bound. Farm Bound connects people with organic and local food, offering customers throughout BC organic produce, artisan cheeses & meats, as well as organic, dried and processed goods. Farm Bound has partnered with local farms and producers to provide and deliver specialty boxes each week. Customers subscribe to a box of their choice on a weekly, bi-weekly or monthly basis. Boxes are then delivered to customers’ homes or to pick-up locations. As the grand prize winner, Jaye received business capital and business services worth over $17,500.
The tradeshow highlighted all of the entrepreneurs who participated in the program as well as the sponsors and partners. “The business community has supported this program for that last two years and we are so grateful for the time, expertise and prizes they provide to this business development initiative,” said Horsfield.
The Community Futures Enterprize Challenge 2016 is presented by VantageOne Credit Union. Other partners and sponsors for this initiative include, KPMG, Nixon Wenger, Sproing Creative, The Morning Star, City of Vernon, Okanagan College, Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce and Sun FM.