Pro Football Spot Wins at Seed Project Pitch Event
Over sixty students, alumni, and community members gathered at Covenant on April 25, 2013, for the third annual Seed Project Pitch Event. Jacob Hutcherson ’13 and Jonathan Spencer ’12 pitched their business ideas, competing for the $10,000 in seed capital. At the end of the evening the seed capital panel announced Jacob and his company, Pro Football Spot, as the 2013 Seed Project winner.
“The room was filled with people who were genuinely interested and engaged in the idea of entrepreneurship,” says Anthony Tucker ’99, director of the Center for Calling & Career.
Jacob impressed the seed capital panel with his online business, Pro Football Spot. The website is currently an online forum for NFL fans, but will continue to expand and will ultimately include creative content.
“The Seed Project helped me narrow down all my thoughts into a distinct plan,” says Jacob. “I tend to have a lot of big ideas, but this process helped add structure and clarity to those ideas.”
The seed capital panel included Prof. Chris Dodson, Mark Griggs, Kimberly Hutchinson, Michael Warren, and Prof. Lance Wescher.
“I was blown away by the outstanding presentations given by both competitors,” says Michael Warren, owner of Evans Lumber and a member of the board of directors of LifeKraze. “I’m so impressed to see kids coming out of college with these entrepreneurial skills.”
Although many of the panel members were entrepreneurs themselves, others like Prof. Dodson became interested in the Seed Project through conversations with Anthony Tucker.
“Anthony Tucker approaches his job with an entrepreneurial passion,” says Prof. Dodson. “His passion inspired me to be part of the seed capital panel.”
Jonathan and Jacob developed their business ideas over several months with the help of the business plan review committee. The committee met multiple times with the competitors to help them craft a strong final pitch. “I was surprised by the huge amount of support and by all the people willing to help me develop my idea,” says Jacob. “I met so many knowledgeable people who were willing to guide me in the right directions and who are interested in helping me build this into something I could do for a living.”
Jonathan did not study business at Covenant, so developing his idea with the business plan review committee was the first exposure he had to that world. He traveled seven hours from St. Louis to pitch his business, Chivumbulutso Travel—a travel agency devoted to providing quality travel options to groups interested in traveling to African countries.
“I’m so thankful for this whole process and to the business plan review committee,” says Jonathan. “I wouldn’t be here tonight without the support and effort they put in to helping make my business plan into something viable.”
“This year’s process was the most successful by far,” says Tucker. “The progress made by both competitors has been astounding. I’m encouraged by how much their business plans have grown and developed through their participation in the Seed Project.”
The pitch event concluded with some thoughts on entrepreneurship from John Sweet ’00, owner of Niedlov’s Breadworks, and Krue Brock ’92, a fellow local entrepreneur.
Tucker looks forward to next year and encourages all students to start thinking of business ideas over the summer. The fourth Seed Project will open in September of 2013.
Photos of the Pitch Event are available on the Seed Project Facebook page.