Flint Business Boot Camp & Pitch Fest

MGFF_Icons-07Our Business Boot Camp is coming to Flint this October 24-26, 2017 at the Flint Farmers’ Market, culminating in a public pitch fest on October 26. You’re invited!

Business Training for Flint’s Good Food Entrepreneurs

This three-day training from October 24-26, 2017 will provide good food entrepreneurs in Flint the knowledge and resources needed to grow. Get a glimpse of what this training can do:

What can participants expect from the Boot Camp? Learn from Boot Camp participants in Battle Creek!

With experienced facilitators and food industry mentors on-hand, participants will get essential business skill building, one-on-one coaching, and peer networking. Topics include:

  • Understanding Your Customer & Defining Your Value Proposition Hone in on your target customers, their needs, and how your products or services can delight and satisfy them.
  • Demystifying Financials: Ever wonder what the difference is between breakeven, cash flow, income statement, and a balance sheet? We’re here to help you understand what these financial health tools mean and how to create and use them for your business.
  • Solving Your Business Challenges: Present the biggest challenge facing your business and get on-the-spot advice from a panel of food industry experts.
  • Marketing & Fundraising. Get some tips about marketing your business plus fundraising strategies and what you need for “the ask”.
  • Telling Your Story…in 5 minutes! Learn how to pitch your business to attract customers, funders, and investors. Practice with experts throughout the three days and prepare for the final pitch fest with chance to win a $10,000 award!

The boot camp culminates in a public pitch fest on October 26 in front of a live audience and a panel of judges. The prize? A $10,000 award from the Michigan Good Food Fund for business consulting and capital expenditures. Save your seat today! 

Boot Camp Instructors and Mentors

The Boot Camp is led by Jay Friedlander, the Sharpe-McNally Chair of Green and Socially Responsible Business at College of the Atlantic in Maine. Jay draws upon nearly two decades of experience with start-ups, natural and organic foods, and teaching sustainable entrepreneurship. He also brings hands on experience having served as the COO of O’Naturals, Inc., a natural and organic fast-food restaurant group.

Jordan Motzkin is the Co-Founder and CEO of Big Box Farms, a NYC-based startup. Jordan is also a partner at PitchWorks where he helps entrepreneurs prepare their companies for external financing.

We’re inviting food industry experts and mentors for additional one-on-one coaching and mentoring attendees. Check back for updates!

Our event partner, Flint Farmers’ Market, will be hosting the Boot Camp.

Meet the Flint Entrepreneurs

Participants in the Flint Boot Camp include:

  • Charma’s Green Chips: Tasty kale and collard green chips – the right choice for flavor and healthy snacking.
  • Flint Farming Project: A cooperative effort to create productive market gardens that will provide healthy local food to residents of Flint while creating new farmers and new jobs.
  • Happy Little Greens Farm: A vertical farm operation focusing primarily on microgreen production, offering sustainable local urban produce solutions.
  • MaMang: Using fresh, locally grown ingredients, MaMang serves Vietnamese cuisine drawn from treasured family recipes.
  • Sweet Peaces Veggie Bistro: A veggie bistro specializing in internationally-inspired, locally-acquired, plant-based cuisine.
  • The Poke Bowl: Putting a new spin on a traditional dish known as sushi.

Selected enterprises met the following criteria:

  • An established business in Flint and benefiting Flint residents.
  • A good food enterprise in grocery or food retail, a healthy food producer, a food processor/distributor, or similar.
  • Business is or has the potential to increase access to healthy food, offer quality jobs, demonstrate environmental stewardship, and use Michigan grown products when possible.