3rd Annual Youth Business Plan Competition Announced

Posted on: August 16, 2016

Open to 9th-12th grade public, private and home-schooled students in Marion County, the 2016 iteration of the contest boasts a first-place prize package valued at over $4,000 (including $2,500 in cash). Meant to stimulate youth entrepreneurship in the community, the competition is a chance for young innovators to put forth their ideas for new businesses in Marion County.

The 2016 competition is being made possible this year by two generous sponsors, CAMPUS USA Credit Union and Raney’s Inc., both of Ocala.

“As an organization owned by our members we are excited to see the entrepreneurial spirit demonstrated by these teens and look forward to supporting their ideas and the Ocala community,” said Jeff Thieman, Chief Operating Officer, CAMPUS USA Credit Union.
Joel Raney, CEO of Raney’s Inc., said, “Having young students from Marion County putting together business plans for this competition is motivating to us as a company.  It is very encouraging to find our local youth setting their goals high and planning to build their futures as entrepreneurs.  We definitely want to be involved in events like this as it goes hand-in-hand with our own story". 

Both Thieman and Raney will be joining a panel of judges for the final round of the competition, which will include presentations or “pitches” by students and will be open to the public. This finale, which will mirror the format of the ABC television show Shark Tank, is scheduled for Friday, November 18th at 6PM at Marion Technical College (formerly CTAE) in Ocala.

“It’s great to see this competition grow each year, and we expect this year will be bigger than ever,” said Ryan Lilly, Director of Business Creation for the Ocala/Marion County Chamber & Economic Partnership (CEP). “It’s always exciting to see what innovative business ideas students will come up with, and it’s important that as a community we give them our full support.”

More information on this competition, a flyer and an application packet can be found at: www.YouthBusinessPlanCompetition.com

For more information on CAMPUS USA Credit Union visit https://www.campuscu.com/ or call (352) 335-9090.

For more information on Raney’s Inc. visit http://raneys.com/ or call 1-888-888-7990.

For more information on the Ocala/Marion County Chamber & Economic Partnership (CEP) or Power Plant Business Incubator visit www.OcalaCEP.com. Contact Ryan Lilly at 352-629-8051 x 125 or Ryan@OcalaCEP.com.


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