BRATTLEBORO >> Strolling of the Heifers and Brattleboro Development Credit Corporation invite you to apply to participate in the 2016 FreshTracks Road Pitch.
The Road Pitch, a gang of motorcycling business investors and advisors, is stopping in Brattleboro on the afternoon of Aug. 2 to hear up to six funding pitches from local businesses that are ready to scale up.
This is the third annual Road Pitch. It will take place from Monday, Aug. 1, through Friday, Aug. 5, with more than 40 motorcycle riders hitting the roads of Vermont and stopping in 10 towns to listen to at least 50 entrepreneurial pitches. Their goal is to find exciting opportunities to invest in.
The Brattleboro stop will be at the Robert H. Gibson River Garden, organized by Strolling of the Heifers and the Brattleboro Development Credit Corporation. Additional stops are scheduled for Essex Junction, Rutland, Bennington, Barre, Randolph, St. Johnsbury, Lowell, Morrisville and Grand Isle.
"The ride promotes Vermont as a terrific place to do business and as a perfect motorcycling destination with lots of scenic twisting roads, picturesque small towns, and plenty of locally sourced food and beverage," said Cairn Cross, co-founder of FreshTracks Capital.
At each stop, the riders will award a $500 Riders' Choice Prize plus a Vermont Teddy Bear "biker bear" to one pitcher in each of the 10 communities. More importantly, for the participating entrepreneurs, the Road Pitch is an opportunity to: Tighten up your business model and scale-up plan; get coaching on honing your business pitch presentation; and develop connections to a network of funders and advisors
In addition, the local winners will have a chance to compete at a statewide final event in October for over $4,000 in cash prizes.
To get started, interested business entrepreneurs should apply, no later than July 5, at www.strollingoftheheifers.com/roadpitch/. BDCC and the Stroll will select up to six finalists who will pitch on Aug. 2. Before the event, finalists will benefit from several coaching sessions, including "dry runs," so that they will have the best possible pitch ready for the motorcyclists.
Each pitch is strictly limited to seven minutes, followed by an eight-minute question and answer period. Powerpoints, demonstrations and samples are encouraged as part of the pitch.
Cross founded the Road Pitch in 2014. This is the second year the tour will be stopping in Brattleboro.
"I gathered together close to 30 other founding riders that year, and we proved the Road Pitch concept by riding 500 miles through Vermont, stopping in various towns and listening to more than 30 pitches."
Road Pitch is generously sponsored by the Vermont Department of Economic Development, Key Bank, Gallagher, Flynn & Co., Burlington Bytes, Champlain College, Vermont Small Business Development Center, Milk Money powered by VSECU, Dinse, Champlain Makers Faire, LaunchVT, Designbook, North Country Angels, Merritt & Merritt, FreshTracks Capital, and the Moulton Law Group.
The qualifications to apply include currently in business or with a product/service that is ready to launch: They will not consider businesses that are in the early start-up phase, without an actual product or service to show or demonstrate. Preference will be given to businesses that are actually open for business, with a product or service currently being sold.
Businesses must also be ready, or will be ready soon, for scale-up, the phase beyond startup in which a businesses takes a major step forward by expanding into new geographical areas, adding new products or services, exploiting new marketing channels, and/or developing new production methods.
They must also be willing to consider outside funding. Participating in the Road Pitch is not a commitment to accept outside funding, but participants should be willing to consider outside investment (or loans) to enable them to take the scale-up leap.
If a business pitched at the 2015 event, they may apply to pitch again, but only if they have made substantial progress in developing their business since last year. Businesses in this category should be in touch with the organizers before applying..
For more information, email or call Martin Langeveld at firstname.lastname@example.org or 802-380-0226, or R.T. Brown at email@example.com or 802-257-7731, ext. 219. Or visit www.strollingoftheheifers.com/roadpitch/