Great companies are often built upon great stories. There were some very engaging story tellers among our Finalists, but none were as captivating as Piper Foster Wilder. The 60 Hertz Microgrids story is only going to get better and better with each re-telling. As I told Piper when she accepted the Grand Prize, "You had us at $200 Million."
So many fairy tales begin with a pair of magic shoes. Clearly we all want to believe, because Pandere Shoes won an encyclopedia-full of awards, including 2nd Place overall, Best Student Business Plan, and Best Manufacturing Plan (sponsored by our friends at the Anchorage Makerspace). Laura Oden, Ayla Rogers, and Celia Crossett were also selected to represent our region in the SBA's national InnovateHER contest; I can't wait to read the surprise ending.
A great story can resonate with an audience because it is so familiar to them. Your Kitchen Startup won 3rd Place overall, telling a story we all hear every day, "The Baker without a Kitchen". Unlike 60 Hertz and Pandere who have been racking up prizes for the past year, Tammas Brown's startup is a new take on an old tale, and they plan to be up and running this summer.