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Path to Prosperity Receives 59 Applications

Twelve semi-finalists will be announced September 30, 2013

JUNEAU, Alaska – The first round of the Path to Prosperity (P2P) business concept competition ended on September 16, 2013.  The competition that aims to support business development in Southeast welcomed 59 completed applications by the 5 pm deadline. Applications submitted after the deadline are encouraged to apply again next year.

P2P is made possible through collaboration between the Haa Aani Community Development Fund and The Nature Conservancy. The competition aims to support business ideas in Southeast Alaska that will increase local employment, have a positive social and economic impact on their communities, and promote sustainable use of natural resources. P2P will also increase entrepreneurial skills and business leadership in Southeast.

“We are thrilled to see the level of interest in this unique business concept competition,” said Haa Aani President Russell Dick. “At the conclusion of the first year of P2P, two winning entrepreneurs will receive an award of up to $40,000  to be used for consulting/technical assistance services. This award will help strengthen the business to make it attractive to potential investors or other sources of financing. Haa Aaní also will offer support in finding investor funding.”

“An important consideration in selecting two winners is the concept’s contribution to conservation and sustainable use of local resources,” said Norman Cohen, Southeast Alaska program director for The Nature Conservancy. “Our partnership is excited to see many applications from outside the region’s urban hubs.  The Nature Conservancy knows the important role entrepreneurship plays in achieving healthy communities, and the overwhelming response to this first round of applications goes to show there is a great need for programs such as this in promoting entrepreneurship.”

Twelve semi-finalists will be selected from the applicant pool and will be announced September 30, 2013. Semi-finalists will be invited to attend a business plan Boot Camp Weekend.  The intense weekend of workshops covers topics such as business plan writing, sustainable business practices, and accessing financial capital.

This program could not be possible with out the collaboration of the following:

Haa Aani Community Development Fund
The Nature Conservancy
Juneau Economic Development Council
The Bainbridge Graduate Institute

Learn more about the competition

Why Path to Prosperity

Southeast Alaska’s rural communities are suffering high unemployment rates, the loss of traditional jobs and a stagnant economy.  Many residents leave their home communities in search of opportunities in urban areas. This outmigration threatens the very fiber of rural community health and well-being.  P2P is designed to enhance local entrepreneurship by identifying and providing support for innovative business ideas that can achieve transformational sustainable growth within the region and its rural communities.

Important Dates and Deadlines

P2P first round finalists announced      September 30, 2013
Boot Camp Weekend October 11 – 13, 2013
Business Plan Submission December 16, 2013
Top two winners announced January 29, 2014

Additional P2P timeline details here.

Winners

Twelve semi-finalists will receive transportation, lodging and meals to attend a weekend boot camp in Juneau where they will receive technical assistance in business development and business plan writing. Two business plans will be selected as finalists and each will receive an award of up to $40,000 in seed funding for consulting and technical services to develop the business.

Questions on Path to Prosperity

For questions or more information, please email Shawn Blumenshine or Alana Peterson at P2P@Sealaska.com or call 907.586.9251.

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