757Pitch challenges Suffolk startups this July

Published 9:32 pm Friday, May 25, 2018

Local entrepreneurs will have the chance to get feedback on their ideas and compete for cash prizes and services when 757Pitch makes its Suffolk debut this July.

The competition will be held from 5:30 to 8 p.m. July 17 at the Suffolk Center for Cultural Arts, 110 W. Finney Ave., and spectators are welcome. The deadline for applications is midnight June 21, and the five selected teams will be notified by July 2.

Presented by Old Dominion University, Startwheel.org and other sponsors, Pitch757 is a bi-monthly competition where five independent ventures each have seven minutes to pitch their ideas and products to a panel of judges in a “Shark Tank”-like format.

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Each pitch will be evaluated on a 10,000-point scale, and the winner will be awarded $757, along with access to resources at ODU’s Center for Enterprise Innovation in Norfolk to help develop the ideas into a marketable solution that can become a sustainable business, according to 757pitch.org.

Teams will also receive constructive criticism leading up to the competition while connecting with other professionals in Hampton Roads.

“You’re going to find out what you can do to make your project or business successful, and you also get good exposure,” Richard Chaing, owner of Suffolk Executive Offices and co-sponsor for 757Pitch, said in a phone interview.

Chaing explained that the judges are looking for viable ideas “with the legs to move forward.”

“They’re looking for something that’s out of the ordinary,” he said. Something that’s “scalable, solves a problem and hopefully will make money,” he added.

There is no fee for applying. Visit 757pitch.org for rules, registration and more information.