Innovate Mississippi New Venture Challenge | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Innovate Mississippi New Venture Challenge

This year’s Mississippi New Venture Challenge will be Thursday, Oct. 3. Photo courtesy Innovate Mississippi

This year’s Mississippi New Venture Challenge will be Thursday, Oct. 3. Photo courtesy Innovate Mississippi

Innovate Mississippi will host its 11th-annual Mississippi New Venture Challenge Pitch Competition on Thursday, Oct. 3, at the Clyde Muse Center (515 Country Place Parkway, Pearl) on the Hinds Community College campus in Pearl.

Thirty tech entrepreneurs from across the state will pitch their business ideas to a panel of judges including Thimblepress owner Kristen Ley; Terrance Hibbert, director of innovation for University of Mississippi Medical Center's Health Innovation and Transformation division; Ben Hubbard, state director of Innovate's Mississippi Coding Academies; and Matthew McLaughlin, owner of legal advisory firm McLaughlin, PC.

The competition will include a student division for high-school or college graduates; a pre-revenue division for startup companies that have not yet started making money; and a post-revenue division for companies that do have a product or service on the market generating revenue.

Participants will work together with mentors that Innovate will match with them based on their areas of expertise and experience, and judging will be based on each team's executive summary of their business plan and a live presentation each must give.

Innovate will give cash prizes to the three winners from each division, and the participants will also receive free professional services from attorneys, accountants and web designers to help grow their businesses.

"The opportunity to pitch their business ideas before entrepreneurs and investors who really know business is valuable for all the participants," Tasha Bibb, entrepreneurial 
development director for 
Innovate Mississippi, told the Jackson Free Press. "They can get valuable feedback to help make their businesses better and can create connections to 
address their needs in the future. It also helps expose the public and the community to what they are all working on."

The event begins at 1 p.m., and is free and open to the public. Afterward, participants will participate in a 
networking reception, where Innovate will also announce the winners.

For more information, call Tasha Bibb at 601-960-3610 or visit

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