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Metro East Start-Up Challenge
Metro East Start-Up Challenge

Welcome to the 2016 Metro East Start-Up Challenge Business Plan Competition (BPC) website.

The Challenge is a $20,000 cash prize business plan competition to identify, encourage, and reward excellence in entrepreneurship in the St. Louis Metro East region. For the 3rd year, PNC Bank, Leadership Council Southwestern Illinois and University Park are the competition's cornerstone sponsors.  The St. Louis Regional Chamber, The SIUE School of Business, The Cities of Edwardsville and Columbia, Riverbend Growth Association are award sponsors. The SIUE School of Business and Illinois Metro East Small Business Development Center (SBDC) are facilitating the competition.

The purpose of the challenge is to:

  1. Increase the Metro East region’s interest in and excitement for business start-ups through a competitive process;
  2. Identify "growth oriented" start-ups with plans to operate in the nine-county St. Louis Metro East region;
  3. Generate a greater awareness of network services/resources for entrepreneurs and small business owners; and
  4. To advance the academic mission of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville by strengthening relationships with private enterprise and expanding opportunities for both students and faculty.

The first place winner will receive a $10,000 cash prize accompanied by an array of in-kind professional services. Two runners up will receive a $5,000 cash prize along with many in-kind professional services.


For More Information:
Small Business Development Center (SBDC)

University Park
Leadership Council
St. Louis Regional Chamber
City of Columbia
SIUE School of Business
City of Edwardsville
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