The Washington County IDA, Washington County Chamber of Commerce, Virginia Department of Small Business and Supplier Diversity, People Incorporated, Virginia Highlands Small Business Incubator, The Town of Abingdon and other business support organizations are partnering to host the second annual Washington County Business Challenge.
The Business Challenge program is an ambitious business plan competition designed to attract entrepreneurs with new technology, value added agriculture, outdoor recreation and retail/support service businesses to locate their start up or to expand their existing business within Washington County. One start up and one existing business will win $5,000 each towards implementing their winning business strategy. To be considered for the award, participants must by resident of Washington County or Town of Abingdon, Damascus or Glade Spring, attend all business training classes to be held weekly over a six week period and complete a business plan that will be presented before a panel of 4 live judges and 3 “blind” judges. Classes will begin on February 3, 2015 and will be held at 6:00 p.m. weekly. The classes will end on March 10, 2015. The Virginia Highlands Small Business Incubator, Washington County Chamber of Commerce, Virginia Department of Small Business and Supplier Diversity, People Inc. and the Small Business Development Centers have also partnered this year to offer free classes that will support the Business Challenge participants both before, during and after the Challenge dates. These classes will be held from 12:00 – 1:30 p.m. and are presented as a Noon Knowledge educational series. Businesses of all types will gain the knowledge helpful to develop leads for selling products and services locally, gain business exposure, build relationships and network with other entrepreneurs.
To apply for the Business Challenge, please contact the Washington County Chamber of Commerce, or visit www.washingtonvachamber.org. Applications for the Challenge will be accepted through 5:00 pm on January 16, 2015. Space is limited and will be on a first come first serve basis.