There was a sense of entrepreneurial spirit in the air this weekend as local youth put their business ideas and pitching skills to the test. From Friday November 4 to Sunday November 6, BioLinc (Brock’s business incubator) and Niagara College collaborated to run their 3rd annual Young Entrepreneur Kick-Off Weekend hosted at Brock University. This event targeted Niagara youth age 18-29 looking to gain skills and knowledge on entrepreneurship.
This fun educational weekend started off with a keynote presentation Friday night from former Brock Graduate and creator of Stathletes, Meghan Chayka. Meghan presented her experience as a young entrepreneur and the hardships she overcame to become the successful individual she is today. Following the keynote teams were formed based on the skills and ideas they brought to the table. On Saturday teams collaborated on their ideas to build a strong pitch that they would present to a panel of judges later in the weekend. Participants also attended training sessions on the Business Model Canvas and Pitching to Investors to better develop their ideas and presentation skills. Teams worked late into Saturday preparing their pitches that would be presented the following morning.
Sunday came quickly for the hard working entrepreneurs and the energy in Pond Inlet was electric as teams waited their turn to impress the judges in hopes to secure first place and the prize package worth $5,000. After the panel of expert judges from Brock University and Niagara College witnessed ten impressive teams pitch their business idea, it was the team of Robert Babiak and Daniel Read, founders of Niagara Sports Network that took first place. Their idea to promote local sports within their communities through web articles and live streaming of the events impressed the judges. Robert demonstrated their competitive advantage by live streaming the presentation and showing the judges his ability to display graphics and updates in real time. The judges were also impressed with their ability to scale the business quickly. Robert is currently the VP of the Lincoln Mavericks Jr. A hockey club, he also holds the record for being the youngest general manager in North American professional sports.
BioLinc and Niagara College are happy with the success of the weekend and hope that it continues to grow with more teams participating year after year.
To see highlights of the event visit here.