Six aspiring business owners are competing to open a storefront in Downtown Sacramento and a business start up package valued at an estimated $135,000.
Vote for your favorite concept here by May 11. The annual Calling All Dreamers competition is produced by the Downtown Sacramento Foundation.
Meet the 2014 Calling All Dreamers finalists:
|Sacramento Climbing & Mountaineering|
The 6 finalists, who are advancing in the competition, were selected from a field of 33 applicants. Over the next month, contestants will work with a SCORE counselor to refine their business plans in preparation for their final pitch in May. The winner will be announced in May with the intent to open their storefront in November.
What is the Calling all Dreamers competition?
It is a retail business plan competition produced by the DSF. Our goal is simple. We want to foster Sacramento’s entrepreneurial spirit and cultivate the next generation of dreamers. We know running a small business isn’t easy. So, we’re here to help. The winner of this competition will have the chance to open a downtown storefront, earn a cash prize and business services valued at approximately $135,000.
How will this competition help me launch my business
We know taking a business from a dream to reality is a complicated task, and the first year is usually the most difficult for small businesses. With that in mind, the business startup package has been specifically designed to provide the winner with the resources and tools needed to succeed. The Downtown Sacramento Foundation with the generous support of our sponsors will help the winning entrepreneur navigate the challenges of that first year in business. The winner will receive a business start-up package valued at $145,000, which includes a cash prize of $10,000—plus up to one year of free rent, and a suite of business services. The winner of this competition will open a storefront in Downtown Sacramento in November 2014.
Want to know more about the Calling All Dreamers competition? Read our Frequently Asked Questions or contact Valerie Mamone-Werder at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Competition Key Dates (Dates may be subject to change.)
- • March 3: Contestant applications due by 5 pm
- • March 14: Semi-finalists announced
- • Mid March: Semi-finalists paired with SCORE business counselor
- • April 4: Semi-finalists’ revised business plans due
- • April 11: Finalists announced & public voting begins
- • May 11: Public voting closes
- • May 13: Finalists present their final pitch
- • Mid May: Competition winner announced
- • November 3: Business grand opening
Meet the Winners of the 2013 Calling All Dreamers competition
Grand Prize Winner
People’s Choice Winner
In 2013, Andy Paul won the inaugural Calling All Dreamers business competition and achieved his lifelong dream of owning a high-end candy boutique. Andy’s Candy Apothecary opened in the 800 J Lofts building just 9 months after he submitted his business concept and entered the contest. To kickstart his first business venture, the first time entrepreneur received a a grand prize valued at $135,000 including a cash prize of $10,000, free rent for a year and business support services including advertising, contractor build out assistance, graphic design, strategic marketing support, legal and accounting services, and more.
With overwhelming online voting support, the DSF also selected the Dailey Method as the People’s Choice winner. The Dailey Method opened its third Sacramento area location in the 800 J Lofts building on February 8. The exercise studio combines ballet barre work, core conditioning, stretching, and orthopedic exercise.
Special Thanks to Our Sponsors
In business, collaboration is key. The Calling All Dreamers competition is made possible by the generous support of the following sponsors who are champions for downtown and the economic growth of the Sacramento region: Sacramento State, College of Business Administration, SMUD, Wells Fargo, City of Sacramento, Economic Development Department, Vision Launchers, Sactown Magazine, Sacramento Magazine, MeringCarson, Inside Publications, LJ2 Interiors, Brown Fink Boyce & Astle, LLP, Law Office of Kristina M. Reed, MarketOne Builders, and SCORE.
If you have any questions regarding the Calling All Dreamers competition or doing business Downtown, contact DSP Sr. Manager of Business Development, Valerie Mamone-Werder at email@example.com or 916.442.8575.