The annual Best Business Competition, a contest to accelerate Iron County startups, is choosing its next class of businesses to get cash and fuel through the Cedar City Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and area businesses.
This call to all entrepreneurs, future business owners and creative thinkers has begun and will continue through Friday, December 6. With any resident of Iron, Beaver and Garfield counties eligible, the Best Business Competition will reward a first place prize of $5,000, plus an advertising package through Cherry Creek Radio, valued at $1,000.
All Southern Utah University students are also eligible to submit their ideas with an opportunity to win up to $2,000 through Zions Bank, and can ultimately win $7,000 and then go on to a the state-wide competition, Utah Entrepreneur Challenge. Students will be pitted against 30 other students from various Utah schools and can win an additional $50,000.
In its eighth year, the Best Business Competition has seen hordes of ideas pass through, ranging from turning discarded cooking oil into an alternative source of energy, a system to open your cars doors when cars are locked inside to a novel way of teaching conversational English.
One of those success stories is Unshoes Minimal Footwear. With the founders beginning their business with only $100 in their basement, through the Best Business Competition they have now moved out into new facilities, hired several employees, and have became an authentic business by winning $5,000.
It is with this idea of finding the hidden business gems that Craig Isom, executive director of the SBDC, stated the competition began in 2005.
“We believe that this region has as many great business ideas, per capita, as any other community in the world. The competition was started with that as its premise. If we can get the great ideas surfaced and identified, then we can help get into going and growing businesses,” he said.
For an official entry form, go to www.suu.edu/business/sbdc. Call the SBDC with any questions regarding your submission form at (435) 865-7707.
If you need help formulating your business proposal or to learn more about the details of the event, a free training sessions will be conducted Thursday, November 21 from 5-6 p.m. the SUU Business Resource Center, 77 North Main Street in Cedar City. RSVP to email@example.com if interested in attending the training. Pizza will be served.