Deadline looms for Liftoff Houston business plan competition

Entrepreneurs have a shot at more than $30,000 in cash and prizes in this year’s Liftoff Houston business plan competition, sponsored by the city of Houston and Capital One Bank.

The deadline for applying is 11:59 p.m. Monday at liftoffhouston.smapply.org.

Qualifying applicants must live in, and run for-profit businesses within Houston’s city limits that have been in operation for less than a year, with revenues that don’t exceed $10,000.

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Those who are accepted compete in three categories: service, product and innovation. The winner of each category receives $10,000. The competition is administered by the Houston Public Library and the city’s Office of Business Opportunity.

“We are all aware of the challenges that business owners have faced during this pandemic, and the City remains steadfast in providing opportunities for entrepreneurs,” Mayor Sylvester Turner said in a statement. “We recognize that out of crisis, incredible opportunities can emerge.”

Those who participate will be required to go through an orientation process, with the competition culminating on a Pitch Day event on Nov. 7. All the events and training will be conducted virtually.

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