Registration for the second Main Street Skowhegan Savings Entrepreneur Challenge is open! If you are interested in participating in the challenge—which features more than $23,000 in benefits and incentives for the winning entrepreneur—please click on the button below and complete the form.
Open to anyone looking to start or expand a business in Skowhegan, the Entrepreneur Challenge will feature a series of seminars designed to provide participants with in-depth information about starting a business. Participants will hear from small business owners about their experiences and from business professionals about insurance needs, financing options, required permits, and more.
They’ll learn how to craft a business plan from start to finish, and they’ll compete for a benefits package of more than $23,000 by submitting their completed plan and presenting their business idea to a panel of judges.
The benefits package includes the following:
- $10,000 forgivable loan from partner and leading sponsor Skowhegan Savings Bank
- Consulting from Kyes-Carpenter Insurance
- Three months of payroll services from Total Payroll Solutions, Inc.
- Consulting services from H&R Block
- Carpentry services from Dionne & Son Builders
- One-year membership to the Skowhegan Area Chamber of Commerce
- Computer supplies and business backup software from Computer Improvements
- Legal consulting from Mills, Shay, Lexier & Talbot
- Three months of internet access and up to two phone lines from Bee Line Cable
- Photography services from Brandie Burrill Photography
- Promotional video produced by Somerset Community Television
- Reduced rent from participating property owners
- Storefront signage design and development from York Signs
- Website design, marketing consultation, and promotional services from Main Street Skowhegan.
2017-18 Entrepreneur Challenge Timeline:
- September 15, 2017: Registration opens
- October 11, 2017: Phase 1 – Starting Your Maine Business seminar (part one)
- October 25, 2017: Phase 2 – Starting Your Maine Business seminar (part two) and criteria for business concept
- November 1, 2017: Business concept pitches due
- November 15, 2017: Phase 3 – Creating Your Maine Business Plan seminar (date tentative)
- January 5, 2018: Phase 3 – Business plans due
- January 2018: Announcement of finalists advancing to Phase 4 – Final Pitch
- February 2018: Phase 4 – Final pitch presentations at Skowhegan Savings
- February 2018: Announcement of winner
- June 2018: Business must be open
For more details, including rules and regulations, please consult the 2017-18 program.
Developed by Main Street Skowhegan’s Business Enhancement Committee in 2015, the Entrepreneur Challenge is designed to strengthen Skowhegan’s economy and spur business development in the region. Learn more about the first Entrepreneur Challenge here.
The committee will share additional information about the program and will be available to answer questions at the Skowhegan Chamber Business After Hours event at Skowhegan Savings Bank (13 Elm Street) on Wednesday, Sept. 27, from 5:30 to 7 p.m.