In January, the Urban League of Greater Cleveland’s Entrepreneurship Center held its 6th annual pitch competition in connection with the launch of the UBIZ Venture Capital Small Business Loan Fund. This fund was set up to find concrete solutions to the differences in small business lending for African Americans and other disadvantaged small businesses.
Because 2020 was a very difficult year for entrepreneurs, the Urban League of Greater Cleveland celebrated small business owners across Greater Cleveland by recognizing their dedication and hard work in entrepreneurship. In particular, the Urban League wanted to celebrate business owners who:
- The business was creatively aligned in 2020 by introducing new ways to meet their customers’ needs and create sustainability
- Generated new revenue during COVID-19 through new technologies or improved business processes.
- Had a social impact on her community and went out of her way to give back through job creation, partnerships and more
- Worked with the Urban League’s Small Business Development Center, Minority Business Assistance Center, or UBIZ Connect at every stage of the business to start, grow, or expand operations
After listening to all of the participants, the Urban League of Greater Cleveland was proud to announce a total of four winners. In addition to a one-year membership in UBIZ Connect worth $ 3,000, including professional pro bono services and consideration for the UBIZ Venture Capital Fund, all companies won different cash prizes.
In addition to these awards, the Cleveland Browns were proud to support this event by donating $ 25,000 in marketing sponsorship, including assets through the team’s radio and digital platforms. After listening to all four pitches, the team awarded Perfect Pineapple Wraps the award for their excellent work in integrating their handcrafted head wraps into the university clinics and the Seidman Cancer Center.