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A BIG IDEA: Business idea competition being held in Columbus

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Doris Lux

Doris Lux poses for a photo in her Central Community College-Columbus office at the BigIron Realty office building in north Columbus. The CCC Entrepreneurship Center is holding a "Shark Tank" inspired competition, the live event of which will take place Nov. 16 at The Friedhof Building in Columbus.

There’s still time for budding entrepreneurs to submit their ideas to Columbus’ own “Shark Tank” inspired competition.

The application process is open for the Columbus Central Community College Entrepreneurship Center’s Big Idea Columbus contest.

“There’s two components to it. One is people who would like to do their idea and that would be open to any adult that has an idea; it doesn’t haven’t to be a business startup. … It could be any type of idea,” said Doris Lux, director of the Entrepreneurship Center for the Columbus campus.

Ideas can include businesses or products; they can be a brand new venture or something that has been inspired by an existing concept. A business plan isn’t needed for the competition, just an idea that may need some seed money and resources to get off the ground.

The other part of the contest will be a Live Pitch Event on Nov. 16, during which competitors will provide a pitch of their objective.

“They’ll have a two-minute presentation and then the judges will have time to ask questions. One question can be asked from the audience,” Lux said.

It will be a fast-paced event, similar to “Shark Tank,” she said. A limit of 12 people will be selected out of the applicants, she added.

Friedhof Building

The Friedhof Building, 1270 27th Ave. in downtown Columbus, will be the location of the "Shark Tank" inspired business competition being held Nov. 16. Those interested can apply until Oct. 29; 12 will be selected for the Live Pitch Event.

“Out of those 12 we will have judges that will pick the top five, and then the audience will be first, second and third place out of those five,” she said.

Anyone can attend the Live Pitch Event, which will be held at The Friedhof Building, 1270 27th Ave. in Columbus. Social hour starts at 5:30 p.m. with the competition beginning at 6:30. There will be refreshments available, Lux noted.

“We’re hoping to wrap up around 8, 8:30,” she said.

The first place prize is $1,000, the second place winner will receive $750 and third place is $500. Also, Lux noted, there will be media packages for print, radio and TV advertising and a package from the college for guidance services.

The Entrepreneurship Center provides assistance to hopeful business owners or product inventors.

“My position is to help people get their idea or business to come to realization,” Lux said. “I’m the business coach so I’m here to guide them if they want to continue developing their idea to, again, reality. Our purpose is to create economic growth in our community by having additional businesses in the community.”

The competition is open to any adult. Applications are available at cccneb.edu/BigIdeaColumbus or in paper form at the Entrepreneurship Center’s office located inside Bigiron Realty, 4860 33rd Ave. in Columbus.

Applications are due by midnight Oct. 29. Finalists selected for the Live Pitch Event will be notified the first week in November.

“Our hope is that we can work with some of the participants and get their idea to come to reality, and potentially get some new businesses located in the Columbus area,” Lux said.

Hannah Schrodt is the news editor of The Columbus Telegram. Reach her via email at hannah.schrodt@lee.net.

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