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Pitchfest finalists ready for tonight

Posted on Aug 23 2019

The finalists for the Saipan Chamber of Commerce first entrepreneur Pitchfest are ready to present their business ideas this evening at Hyatt Regency Ballroom from 6pm to 10pm. After many rounds of selection, the eight finalists for Pitchfest are as follows:

• Jeremy Wolfe & Elina Gharti Chhetri of Marianas Creation
• Vincent Aldan of Ra Power
• Eric and Tania David of Isla Shreds
• Diana Hocog of JD’s Boutique from Rota
• Priscilla Pangelinan of Music & Me
• Joseph Villacrusis of Salty Skin Pacific, LLC.
• Michea Arritola of Guava Rose Resale
• anya Salas and Vicente Salas of Tahine’s TV Productions

Commerce, with the support of the CNMI Small Business Development Center, is proud to present the inaugural Pitchfest. This event is an opportunity for entrepreneurs to share their innovative ideas with a panel of judges and an audience for a chance to win seed money that could help grow or launch a small business.

The Pitchfest process is simple: 1.) All finalists will present their business ideas to our esteemed panel of judges and our live audience. Judges will be allowed to ask follow up questions, 2) After the conclusion of the pitches, our “investors” will choose which businesses they choose for their investments, 3) The Grand Prize winner of Pitchfest, selected by the panel of judges, will be announced along with the total amount of the grand prize ($2,000+).

The 2019 Pitchfest winner will receive $2,000 or more in seed money to start or grow their business, free Chamber membership under the Start-Up Package ($300 value), free Saipan Young Professionals Membership for one year ($50 value), recognition plaque/trophy, and a sponsored gift bag from community sponsors ($100 value).

The Chamber thanks all who have supported the entrepreneurs by purchasing tickets to the event. Half (1/2) of all ticket sales will go directly to the grand prize winner.

“We thank the following Pitchfest Investors for giving the wings to our entrepreneurs’ ideas by investing in our event. Because of their support, many of our finalists will be walking away with seed money for their new businesses. Our Champion, Visionary, and Accelerator investors will all directly choose the business ideas they would like to invest in,” a statement from the Chamber said.

The following companies have sponsored the corresponding sponsorship levels: Tan Siu Lin Foundation (Champion Investor); AC Pacific, LLC. dba “I Love Saipan” (Visionary Investor); IT&E, Friends First Marketing, Marianas Business Plaza, and Paradise Dental Spa (Accelerator Investors), and Aon Insurance and Hyatt Regency Saipan (Angel Investors).

Investments from the competition’s Angel Investors will be pooled into the “Chamber’s Choice” award selected by participating Chamber board of directors.

Additional thanks to the Pitchfest’s event sponsors for supporting the gift bags and additional funding for our entrepreneurs: Isa Shaved Ice, First Hawaiian Bank, Pacifica Insurance, McDonald’s of Saipan, Calvo’s Insurance, and Vickie N. Izuka.

The Chamber is also grateful for the following Chamber mentors who volunteered their time to provide feedback to the finalists on their pitches: Secretary Mark Rabauliman (Department of Commerce), Donna Krum (Friends First Marketing), Glen Hunter (The Shack/The Airstream), Joe Guerrero (JZ Group/Naked Fish), Perry Inos Jr. (Triple J Saipan), and Nicole Babauta (CNMI SBDC).

This event would not be possible without our partnership with the CNMI Small Business Development Center. Thanks also go to Chamber director Nicole Babauta for investing time and energy into mentoring our finalists to get them ready to present their final pitches.

Tickets can be purchased until 2pm at the Chamber office located on the 3rd floor of the Marianas Business Plaza, Suite #315. Tickets can also be purchased at the door while supplies last. Those planning to attend the event are asked to arrive early and secure seats by 6pm, as pitches will promptly start at the beginning of the event.

For more information about the event or how to be a sponsor, contact Mercilynn Kaneshi Palec at (670) 234-7150 or email administrator@saipanchamber.com. (PR)

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