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Canada's 'Longest Elevator Pitch Contest' offers $10,000 prize

By Julie King |

Attention Canadian small business owners! A new contest is seeking submissions up to 1000 characters in length, that explain you business' value proposition.

Open until, June 20, 2011, the competition will have five finalist prizes, consisting of a trip to Toronto -- including a round trip airline ticket to Toronto, one night of hotel accommodations and one $250 Visa Prepaid card -- to attend Visa® Small Business "Elevator Pitch" Contest Final judging on July 12, 2011.

Each finalist will then have 60 seconds to pitch why they should win the grand prize, a $10,000 credit on the primary 'qualifying business' cardholder's Visa account.

Competition judging will take place in three rounds:

1. Initial judging of all candidates. A marketing company will judge qualifying entries received based on their originality, creativity, appropriateness, relevance and professionalism. Evaluations will be based on a scoring system:

  • Is the product and/or service of the business clearly articulated? (5 points)
  • How creative and original is the entry? (5 points)
  • Does the entrant provide specific examples of their relevant expertise for running their business? (5 points)
  • Does the entry provide proof points of their knowledge of their market and industry? (5 points)
  • Does the entry provide proof points of their knowledge of the business model? (5 points)
  • Is there a competitive advantage? (10 points)
  • How financially viable is the business? (10 points)

2. Judging the top 20-25 entries. A panel of judges appointed by the contest sponsor will then judge the top entries selected in the first review, based on similar criteria used in round one judging. In this round all factors will be weighted equally to determine the top five finalists.

3. Going up! Each finalist will have approximately 60 seconds to present their 1,000 character elevator pitch to a panel of judges on July 12, 2011 during an elevator ride at One King West Hotel & Residence, from which one participant will be selected as the grand prize winner.

For full contest details or to enter, visit

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