Local Banks to Sponsor Competition for "Best Pitch in the Valley"

Six local banks will sponsor a live elevator pitch competition at the 13th Annual Awards Banquet.

Six local community banks will sponsor a live elevator pitch competition at the thirteenth annual Awards Banquet for the Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation's Entrepreneurship Initiative. Representatives from each bank will also serve as judges at the annual event planned for April 27th at the Log Cabin in Holyoke, MA. The banks are: Berkshire Bank, Country Bank for Savings, First Niagara, PeoplesBank, United Bank, and Westfield Bank.

An elevator pitch is an overview of an idea for a new business. The name reflects the fact that an elevator pitch can be delivered in the time span of an elevator ride. The term is used when an entrepreneur pitches an idea to a venture capitalist to receive funding. The competition will feature a student representative from each of the participating local colleges who has already won the internal competition on their campus:  American International College, Amherst College, Bay Path University, Elms College, Greenfield Community College, Hampshire College, Holyoke Community College, Mount Holyoke College, Smith College, Springfield College, Springfield Technical Community College, University of Massachusetts, Western New England University, and Westfield State University. 

The judges will pick the top three students who will receive cash awards with the winner receiving $1000.00. The Live Elevator Pitch competition is always one of the highlights of the evening. Other features of the Banquet include: Entrepreneur Business Exhibits featuring 78 student entrepreneurs from area colleges each of whom has won a Grinspoon Entrepreneurial Spirit Award.  Additionally, our keynote speaker is Mr. Brendan CieckoFounder of Cuseum.  Cuseum powers mobile-first experiences that help museums engage their visitors.  Ciecko won a Grinspoon Entrepreneurial Spirit Award in 2008.

The Entrepreneurship Initiative is one of many Western Massachusetts programs supported by the philanthropy of Longmeadow, Massachusetts resident and businessman, Harold Grinspoon. For more information about the Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation visit hgf.org or contact Cari Carpenter at 413-335-3535 or cari@hgf.org.