Local entrepreneurs have a chance to compete for funding, free space and mentoring through the Small Business Investment Forum (SBIF) business plan competition.
2014 contributing partners to SBIF include: City of Martinsville, Patrick Henry Community College, MHC Chamber of Commerce, West Piedmont Workforce Investment Board, HD Web Studio and the MHC EDC Small Business Division.
The competition consists of two rounds, with Round One being the review of each applicant's business plan by a panel of judges. Round Two of the competition begins after the judges select the best business plans. Those selected will appear for an oral presentation. Judges will then select final winners and mentor them over the next year.
“Competing in the SBIF competition was rewarding in two ways. Not only did we win the means to purchase a transport vehicle, but we also found value in the business plan writing process. Periodically reevaluating our plan keeps us on track and helps us avoid costly mistakes,” said Deana Ferguson, co-owner of 2014 winner Finish 1st Motorsports.
The 2014 grant went to G2 Auto, LLC who used their award to purchase much needed equipment for their auto sales business. Co-owners Fred Wooden and Brad Hughes indicated "The SBIF contribution and mentorship gave us the backing to build our services and, ultimately, helped us to make a capital expansion."
2012 winner, Sharon Sleeper of Mollies Originals, stated "The sound business advice, financial backing, and training opportunities offered by SBIF have helped our business grow exponentially." Mollies Originals has secured local and state contracts.
Casting Logos Direct was also a past awardee and now has 16 employees and has completed a capital and service expansion.
Since its launch in 2008, the SBIF has awarded 20 businesses over $83,000.
Interested applicants must be located in Martinsville or Henry County and be a for-profit start-up or a business in operation less than three years as of the application deadline.
All submissions should include (at the very least):
- Application Form
- A Detailed Business Plan
- Financial Projections
- Entrepreneurial Assessment
Template examples are available below:
- Business Plan
- Cash Flow
- Create an online Business Plan for the template above and download it to Word for easy editing