The largest open, “Shark Tank”-like, start-up pitch competition in the Appalachian Highlands will return at 6 p.m. on May 26 for its sixth year. Aptly named “The Pitch,” the event pits aspiring entrepreneurs against the clock to present their ideas in five minutes or less to a panel of judges for a chance to win cash prizes to help them launch their new venture.
FoundersForge, the Johnson City-based non-profit that is dedicated to the underdog entrepreneurs in the region, is once again partnering with the Johnson City’s Doughboys to create a unique event focused on innovation in the area. The baseball-themed event starts with participants “pitching” their ideas from the pitcher’s mound of the TVA Credit Union Ballpark to a panel of judges at home plate. There will also be the traditional seventh inning stretch; a chorus of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game”; and plenty of free hotdogs, popcorn, and other prepared “grab & go” food for the spectators.
“Pitch competitions are about taking a moment in time to celebrate our business community and inspire others to launch their innovative ideas into businesses,” says David Nelson, Director of FoundersForge. “Every year everyone is amazed at the creative innovation we have in our region. This year is going to showcase how far we have come as a start-up ecosystem even during a pandemic which is creating new challenges, but also new opportunities.”
The event is for anyone who has an idea, invention, or even an existing early stage start-up. To apply, click on the FoundersForge website here. The organization will provide free pitch training and coaching to all accepted presenters.