By Renae Cromwell
Do you think you have what it takes to be the “top gun” in the technology field? Find out on October 15th at Gainesville Area Innovation Network’s Second Annual “Shootout” Investor Presentation Contest. This event was established by GAIN to provide an opportunity for entrepreneurs to present their business plan to potential investors and gain exposure for their business through networking opportunities.
From 12:30 pm to 9:00 pm, 16 entrepreneurs in the technology field will gather at the Harn Museum to present their business plans to judges and potential investors for a chance to win prizes and recruit investors.
The initial 16 participants will be chosen from a pool of applicants by GAIN President Randy Scott, Executive Director Lee May, and other members of the GAIN board. Each participant must be an entrepreneur in the tech field with a business or business plan in the early stages of development.
Through this event, GAIN seeks to continue their mission to “inspire, connect, and educate entrepreneurs who want to change the world,” says Lee May.
Each participant will be paired with judges in similar professions who know what concepts work and what investors are interested in financing. Participants will have one hour to present their business plan and judges will issue feedback and advice regarding their pitch and how to attract investors.
After much deliberation and a rigorous selection process, the judges will narrow the contenders down to four entrepreneurs. The final four will then present their business plan in front of an audience and panel of VIP judges in the final “Shootout.” In this round the presenters will have only nine minutes each to deliver a shortened pitch before the judge’s make their final decision and name the “top gun.”
Companies not presenting have the opportunity to showcase their business and services with exhibit space for a $100 fee. Three educational panels will also be offered to anyone in attendance, covering the areas of capturing investor interest, developing strong business plans, and making quality business presentations. Lee May emphasized that these panels will be a great opportunity for anyone who is thinking about starting a business.
The night will conclude with a cocktail hour and awards dinner where the winner will be announced.
The winner will receive over $5,000 in cash, prizes, and other services that will help to jumpstart their business. Each participant will also receive a video recording of their presentation to help them critique it for future use.
All participants will benefit from this event, mainly from the visibility and exposure that it will generate, but also for the networking and mentoring opportunities each entrepreneur will have.