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REV Birmingham Announces 5 Finalists for The Big Pitch 2019

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The Birmingham Times 

Five finalists have been announced for The Big Pitch 2019 and will compete to win a share of $50,000 in cash and professional services prize packages on Saturday, November 23, REV Birmingham has announced.

The Big Pitch is Presented by PNC Bank.

The finalists will pitch their business models to a panel of judges, potential investors, and a live audience. Big Pitch finalists are being paired with mentors and service providers to help them prepare a successful business model and perfect pitch for the annual competition organized by REV Birmingham.

The 2019 Big Pitch finalists are:

  • Blueroot Co.: Jennifer Ryan fills her produce-forward menu with bright, delicious, and nutrient rich foods, showcasing the best our local farmers have to offer.
  • Elysian Gardens: William and Kelly Colburn of Iron Age Studio are planning a community sculpture park in Avondale where art, music, and food connect neighbors.
  • Encore Rouge: Antoinne and Shantale Davis are serving bold flavorful authentic Cajun fare from their food truck as they work toward opening their brick-and-mortar restaurant.
  • Relaxation Room: Massage therapist Adrian Ward has plans to create the Relaxation Room, where you can sit in a massage chair, put on virtual goggles, and take a trip to a peaceful place.
  • Sidekicks: Bonaventure Akinlosotu and Joseph Bradley of Sidekicks in Avondale are driving Birmingham’s sneaker culture as they aim to grow their shop into a boutique-style smart store.

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“This year’s finalists represent an exciting mix of food, retail and experience creation concepts that would all add to Birmingham’s vibrancy,” said REV CEO and President David Fleming. “The Big Pitch Presented by PNC is designed to find and feed Birmingham’s next big things, and we believe all five of these businesses fit that build. Throughout the Big Pitch process and even beyond the live event, REV and our sponsors, mentors and service providers will support these entrepreneurs as they work toward their dreams.”

The Big Pitch live competition is Saturday, November 23 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the site of REV’s Upswing retail demonstration project at the corner of 2nd Avenue North and 19th Street. Big Pitch tickets are available now at bigpitchbham.com.

Each finalist has been paired with a local entrepreneur who will serve as a mentor throughout their Big Pitch experience. These mentors have either started, built or sold successful ventures of their own. Service providers are professionals in areas like business law, accounting, marketing and more who have been selected to provide a free one-on-one consultation to finalists. 

This is the sixth year PNC has sponsored the Big Pitch. In addition to offering capital to the top competitors, PNC employees provide coaching and other support for all finalists. 

For more details on The Big Pitch, visit bigpitchbham.com. Follow @revbham on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to see updates on #REVBigPitch and more of REV’s vibrancy-driving work in Birmingham.

REV Birmingham (REV) creates vibrant commercial districts. For more information, visit www.revbirmingham.org.