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Engage Business Challenge: Application Available 12/18

December 18, 2018 @ 8:00 am - February 21, 2019 @ 11:59 pm

The ENGAGE Business Challenge is a competitive process for emerging entrepreneurs and communities working to start or expand their businesses from Olathe to Somerset (including Somerset, Paonia, Crawford, Hotchkiss, Orchard City, Cedaredge, Delta and Olathe).

This competition seeks to enhance the main streets/downtown business district in these communities and other commercial areas, as well as highlight the opportunities for business startups and expansion in our targeted region.
With up to $11,000 in business investment grants, business skills and leadership training and mentorship opportunities, the Business Challenge is designed to help entrepreneurs establish or expand businesses with the utmost potential for success. This three month business training, networking, and mentorship opportunity will result in a pitch night at which emerging entrepreneurs will pitch their businesses, and communities will present tailored incentive packages to attract entrepreneurial investment. Focusing on regional community economic development strategies, eligible Business Categories include: Arts and Culture, Outdoor Recreation, Value Added Agriculture/Agritourism, Restaurants and Hospitality, Technology/Advanced Manufacturing, or Support services for the above.

The following will be awarded to the top 5 performers of the program once they establish an eligible business for qualified business expenses:

  • $5,000 (one cash award)
  • $2,000 (two cash awards)
  • $1,000 (two cash awards).

In addition to the cash awards, the top 5 businesses will each receive a tailored package of free services valued up to $2,000. Examples of services are: business consulting, several free months of internet and/or coworking space, marketing assistance, help in securing and/or renovating a location. Only those who successfully complete the program, including participation in the scheduled trainings and activities, will be eligible for cash awards.

Applications must be submitted online or postmarked no later than 11:59 p.m. on February 10, 2019. Once applications are received, a cohort of Challengers will be selected to participate in the program.


December 18, 2018 @ 8:00 am
February 21, 2019 @ 11:59 pm
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