For Immediate Release
December 6, 2021
Person of Contact: Patrick Snyder, Executive Director
BizStarts and AARP Wisconsin Give over $20k to Small Businesses in Milwaukee
MILWAUKEE (December, 2021) – With the support of AARP Wisconsin, BizStarts held a pitch competition this past weekend at St. Ann’s Center for Intergenerational Care and awarded small businesses in the community over $20,000.
Entrepreneurs who graduated from our BizStarts Institute in September were given the opportunity to pitch their business to a panel of judges. The money for the competition was provided by AARP Wisconsin and BizStarts was able to award over $20,000 to underserved community entrepreneurs. The entire community showed up and breakfast was served by On the Bayou, who went through the BizStarts Institute program previously. The three businesses that placed in the competition were Kreative Fruitz, Curly Consciencz LLC and Attracting Success.
The first place business was Kreative Fruitz owned by Imani Raiyne and Golden Ellis. Kreative Fruitz makes fruit fun with fresh squeezed juices and fun fruit arrangements. They work to bring produce and juices to food deserts to introduce healthy diets to more people. “I’m overwhelmed at the support and passion that BizStarts pours into small businesses on all levels. So that the world can have an opportunity to see all of the amazing talents that reside in Milwaukee!” Said winner and part owner of Kreative Fruitz, Imani Raiyne.
Placing Second was Malayia Roper of Curly Consciencz LLC. Curly Consciencz is an inclusive toy company that is working to produce dolls that are representative of different skin tones and hair textures. In third place was LaEisha Barkley whose business is called Attracting Success. LaEisha is working on an online credit literacy master course to help people improve their credit.
When asked about the Pitch Competition, BizStarts Executive Director Patrick Snyder said, “I can’t think of a greater opportunity for these businesses. Including questions from judges the entrepreneurs are pitching for 5 minutes total. With a top prize of $5000 dollars, that means when our entrepreneurs are up on that stage, they are potentially worth $1000 a minute!”
BizStarts brings entrepreneurs together from all backgrounds, ethnicities and beliefs to create a collaborative learning environment that embodies positivity, inspires confidence and develops people’s capacity to achieve personal success and business growth. Working together, we are creating economic opportunity, communities with unique character and a vibrant city with prosperity for all.