The city is organizing a pilot event that will give entrepreneurs the opportunity to pitch their ideas to Prince George business leaders and – potentially – to receive financial help bringing their visions to life. In a style akin to CBC’s Dragons’ Den, the City of Prince George’s Titans’ Den will connect local successful business people with residents who have untested business proposals. The Titans will hear the ideas and then contribute their own money towards the concepts they feel have serious potential.
Unlike Dragons’ Den, the business leaders will not be taking any stake or control in successful projects as part of this initiative, nor will the event be televised or conducted in public. However, the city will be publishing the results of the event after its conclusion.
Entrepreneurship is a pillar of the City of Prince George’s Economic Development Strategy, which was approved by council in 2019. One of the strategy objectives is to connect entrepreneurs to one another, to mentors, and to capital providers.
“As the city affirmed during the consultation process of the city’s economic development strategy, securing seed funding to get ideas off of the ground is notoriously tough for entrepreneurs. This has left many innovative and worthwhile ideas stranded too often on a literal drawing board,” said Melissa Barcellos, Manager of Economic Development for the City of Prince George, in a news release. “In an energetic, ‘can do’ city like Prince George, it’s not hard to find leaders who have achieved great success in the business world. The city asked a few such leaders if they were willing help the next generation of entrepreneurs to gain a foothold. Unsurprisingly, the response was very positive.”
The Titans are well known Prince George entrepreneurs with many years of experience operating successful businesses; however, their identities will remain anonymous during the course of the event. Those entering the Titans’ Den will be expected to have a cursory knowledge of the market they are entering, some basic costs outlined, and the steps they intend to take to develop their business. Participants will be allowed to ask the Titans for a maximum of $4,000 ($1,000 from each Titan) for their undertaking.
“As this is a pilot project, we will be measuring the success of the event and then making a decision about whether to hold more,” said Barcellos.
The event will be happening at the Ramada Hotel in downtown Prince George on October 29 and will follow physical distancing protocols.
Local entrepreneurs interested in participating in the Titans’ Den are asked to contact Allan Stroet at the City of Prince George at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 250-561-7582. Local business people who are interested in supporting entrepreneurs can also contact Stroet.
Further information about this event is available at www.princegeorge.ca/entrepreneurs.