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Contest gives Local Small Business chance at $150,000 in prizes

Arlene Dickinson, CEO of District Ventures Capital and judge on CBC’s Dragon’s Den to be the lead judge in this contest.

With more than $150,000 in prizes on the line, the TELUS Pitch is here and offering Canadian entrepreneurs the chance to reap the rewards of their hard work through the largest small business contest payout in the country.

TELUS has partnered with renowned entrepreneur, Arlene Dickinson, CEO of District Ventures Capital and judge on CBC’s Dragon’s Den to be the lead judge in this contest.

Fron now until October 29, TELUS is inviting Canadian entrepreneurs to enter the annual small business contest by sharing how winning the grand prize of $100,000 will help them achieve their business goals and take their small business to the next level of excellence. The judging panel will also award four other business owners a total of more than $50,000 in additional cash prizes, hardware, technology and marketing services. Plus, select finalists will be provided ongoing mentorship opportunities from industry experts.

  • The winning small business will receive $100,000.
  • Two runners-up will receive $10,000.
  • One small business that is giving back in a meaningful way to their local community will be selected by a panel of TELUS Community Investment team members to receive a $10,000 cash prize, plus an additional $10,000 to donate to the charity of their choice.
  • One most promising startup that is making significant strides in the industry will be selected to receive $10,000 in cash and prizes of two Samsung devices and mentoring and marketing services from startup marketing firm Eighty-Eight.

"The inaugural TELUS Pitch is a contest we’re very proud of because the winners will receive so much more than cash prizes. We'll provide entrepreneurs with national exposure and connect them with the best minds in Canadian small business for ongoing support," said Suzanne Trusdale, vice-president of Small Business at TELUS. "Entrepreneurs are the heart of Canada's economy, and we want to accelerate their success. These unique experiences are invaluable, and to have a shot at winning, entrepreneurs need only do what they do every day; pitch their business."

To help drive awareness of the TELUS Pitch contest, a life-sized custom elevator is travelling the country, stopping at local small business events to give entrepreneurs the opportunity to step in and deliver their 60 second live “elevator” pitch. Entrepreneurs in Toronto were first to step inside the elevator when 20 small business owners were surprised with the opportunity to deliver their pitch directly to Dickinson and will be entered to compete with other contest entrants.

Entrepreneurs are also invited to enter the competition online.

“I’ve worked with hundreds of entrepreneurs over the course of my career and I know firsthand what it takes to build a successful business from the ground up; $100,000 when you’re a startup or an early-stage business is equivalent to winning the lottery. It means everything," said Dickinson. “But the TELUS Pitch is not only providing financial support, it's providing mentorship and resources to help Canadian small business owners achieve the next step in their dream, and I’m excited to take part.”

Dickinson and Trusdale join four other successful Canadian business leaders and small business experts as TELUS Pitch judges: Bruce Poon Tip, Founder of G Adventures; Sunil Sharma, Managing Director at Techstars Toronto; Erin Bury, Managing Director of Eighty-Eight, and Mark Childs, Chief Brand Officer at Samsung Canada. Three semi-finalists will be invited to pitch all six judges in Toronto on November 13 on how they plan to use the $100,000; the final winner will be announced live at the event.

For full contest details please visit: telus.com/pitch.