Seven of Bermuda’s promising young entrepreneurs impressed the judges at the first Youth Pitch hosted yesterday by the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation.
The two winners, who will progress to next Thursday’s Rocket Pitch finals, were Chaella Bradshaw-Douglas and Tessa Dill.
Ms Bradshaw-Douglas, of CedarBridge Academy, proposed Good Chew, a healthy choice vending business she plans to provide in and around Bermuda’s schools.
Ms Dill, of Bermuda High School, proposed Off the Chain, a one-stop hot dog shop at Dockyard, featuring reasonably priced lunches for locals and tourists on the go.
This new category, Youth Pitch is being sponsored by Global Entrepreneurship Week Host Committee member, the Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative of Bermuda.
The two winners will receive $4,000 in start-up funding from the YEI, proceed to the Rocket Pitch finals, and share business services provided by other sponsors including Deep Blue Communications, Mediaville, Cox Hallett Wilkinson, Quantifi, Performance Solutions, Media Maven and Total Pro.
Ideas pitched ranged from food service and T-shirts to canoe rentals and a youth empowerment organisation.
Those who pitched were Logan Henschke (The Berkeley Institute), Jaaziah Richardon-Webb (CedarBridge Academy), Rickai Lightbourne Jr (Bermuda Institute), Adriana Burchall, Ashley Pacheco and Tamia Place (CedarBridge Academy), as well as Ms Dill and Ms Bradshaw -Douglas.
Joe Mahoney, executive director of YEI, said: “Working with and coaching the students allowed me to see these students develop their plans over the course of the past few weeks and was extremely fulfilling, yet to hear them deliver them here this evening with such passion was indeed impressive.”
Jamahl Simmons, Minister of Economic Development, said: “The young people in this room are proof that Bermudians have what it takes to ensure that Bermuda remains a viable player on the world stage.”
The Youth Pitch judges were J’Von Furbert, BEDC board member, Ray Jones, BEDC finance director, and Ondreyah Rochester, BEDC trainee business development officer.