Sponsored by Capital One Bank in partnership with the Houston Public Library (HPL) and the Office of Business Opportunity (OBO), the “Liftoff Houston” Business Plan Competition is at point to award this year’s new Liftoff Houston business plan winners.  On Saturday, November 5, 2016, eight finalists will give their business plan pitch to “celebrity” VIP judges. There will be three winners and each selected winner will win $10,000.00 for their business plan presentations in the categories of Product, Service and Innovation.  Liftoff Houston is a competition that engages and empowers Houstonians seeking to start a new business in Houston by providing them with access to essential information, resources and the support necessary to develop a sound business plan toward realizing their goal.

The “Liftoff Houston!” competition will take place at the Houston Public Library’s Julia Ideson Building, 550 McKinney, St., 77002 from 10AM until 2:30PM. This event is free and open to the public. For more details, visit: www.houstonlibrary.org or call 832-393-1313.

Capital One Bank is providing cash prizes totaling $30,000 to the top three winning business plan category presentations.

The 2016 Liftoff Houston Business Plan Competition Finalist are:

Product Category

Camellia Alise –  Lyndsey Brantley

Camellia Alise is an all natural, 100% vegan, unisex shaving system created to help eliminate ingrown hairs and other skin irritation associated with the shaving and waxing processes.

Naughty Noah’s – Jimmy Trinh

Naughty Noah ‘s Noodles are a  new twist on Vietnam’s beloved daily dish with an authentic family recipe that delivers the rich culinary tradition of Pho right to your busy life with nourishing, flavorful spin on a timeless classic.

Remedyy  – Jonathan Woolf and Zachary Samet

Remedyy makes buying and selling slightly used, high-end furniture and décor a seamless experience throughout the Houston area.

Innovation Category

SpenDebt – Kiley Summers

SpenDebt is a financial technology company designed to assist people to pay-off debt leveraging micro payments through every day purchases.

Grant Source – Allen Thornton

Grant Source is a mobile app that helps find grants and resources to secure them, attached to a modern advertising platform for businesses.

Service Category

Bribiesca Art Studio –  Catalina Mercado

Bribiesca Art Studio provides thoughtful, quality fine art instruction for children and adults and brings original local art to homes and businesses.

Awesome Bites Company  – Jennifer Thai and Rodolfo Rivera

Awesome Bites Company is an allergy firndly and health conscious bakery in Houston, born from the belief that we deserve food made with better ingredients that are safe to share with others.

Green Money Search – Natalie Goodman

Green Money Search connects citizens to government incentives that promote sustainable practices.

“As we enter into our 4th Pitch Day, the City of Houston couldn’t be more excited to see 8 finalists participate for their chance to win $10,000”, “We would like to congratulate all of the participants and encourage them to continue to pursue their dream of entrepreneurship” – Carlecia D. Wright, Director, Office of Business Opportunity (OBO).

“The Houston Public Library (HPL) is thrilled again this year to play an integral role in bringing the Liftoff Houston! Competition Business Plan Competition to Houstonians. HPL congratulates each of the finalists for making it this far in the competition. We wish them the best and encourage them to continue using the Library’s free access to critical business related resources and services to help them expand their businesses. Their opportunity to win $10,000.00 through the generosity of Capital One Bank will give the winners needed capital to invest in their business and the confidence to succeed and fulfill their dreams,” said Houston Public Library Director Dr. Rhea Brown Lawson.

“Capital One Bank is committed to investing for good in the communities we serve, and we are proud to partner with the mayor, Houston Public Library and the Office of Business Opportunity to offer the LiftOff Houston competition for the fourth year in a row,” said Jim Nicholas, Houston Market President for Capital One Bank. “We commend the program participants for the creativity, passion and hard work they bring to Liftoff Houston. One of the biggest winners of this competition is the city of Houston, because a program like this can help local businesses grow, which in turn can help create jobs here in our community.”

About The Competition

The “Liftoff Houston” 2016 Business Plan Competition is designed to encourage Houstonians to achieve the goal of business ownership while contributing to the local growth and sustainability of the Houston economy. Anyone interested in learning to create a business plan and go through the process can do so at no charge and achieve their dream.

To successfully research, develop and present the business plan, participants are required to have an HPL Card, attend workshops offered by industry experts, ranging in topics from business plan basics to presenting plans to financial institutions, and attend information sessions to learn about the free vast resources available to support new business start-ups through HPL and OBO. Additional support is also provided through professional business mentors to help participants further refine their business plan.

To be eligible, applicants have to have a for profit business that is less than a year old, has earned less than $10,000 in revenue, and is operated by owners that live within the Houston city limits. The top three finalists receive much needed capital to invest in their business.

The competition is five months long and is divided into four stages that include: orientation, workshops, mentoring, and business pitching. The workshops are offered at various Houston Public Library locations and local entities citywide.

About Capital One

Capital One Financial Corporation (www.capitalone.com) is a financial holding company whose subsidiaries, which include Capital One, N.A., and Capital One Bank (USA), N. A., had $210.4 billion in deposits and $306.2 billion in total assets as of March 31, 2015. Headquartered in McLean, Virginia, Capital One offers a broad spectrum of financial products and services to consumers, small businesses and commercial clients through a variety of channels. Capital One, N.A. has branches located primarily in New York, New Jersey, Texas, Louisiana, Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia. A Fortune 500 company, Capital One trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “COF” and is included in the S&P 100 index.

About the Office of Business Opportunity

The City of Houston’s Office of Business Opportunity (OBO) is committed to creating a competitive and diverse business environment in the City of Houston by promoting the growth and success of local small businesses through a wide range of services from start-up business assistance to certification for established businesses seeking contract opportunities with the City. Through OBO’s Houston Business Solutions Center, they provide resources that help with the launch, sustainability, and growth of businesses. For more information about the Office of Business Opportunity and their suite of services, please visit www.houstontx.gov/obo or call 832-393-0954.

About the Houston Public Library

The Houston Public Library (HPL) operates 35 neighborhood libraries, four HPL Express Libraries, a Central Library, the Houston Metropolitan Research Center, the Clayton Library Center for Genealogical Research, The African American Library at the Gregory School, and the Parent Resource Library located in the Children’s Museum of Houston. With more than eight million visits per year in person and online, HPL is committed to excellent customer service and equitable access to information and programs by providing library customers with free use of a diverse collection of printed materials and electronic resources, Internet, laptop and computer use, and a variety of database and reference resources with live assistance online 24/7.

For further information visit the Houston Public Library at www.houstonlibrary.org on Twitter@houstonlibrary or call 832-393-1313.

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