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Venture Okanagan 2016

$5,000 prize and connections are the promise of Venture Okanagan

Entrepreneurs are already honing their presentation skills as preparations continue for the 10th edition of Venture Okanagan, Western Canada’s largest student-run pitch session for entrepreneurs.

The event will be held in Kelowna at Okanagan College’s campus on February 18.

Twice annually, Venture Okanagan brings five local entrepreneurs together to compete for the attention of local investors. It’s a rewarding experience for participants and for observers.

And it’s a chance for students from Okanagan College’s School of Business to put their education and skills to work in helping develop local businesses. A group of student volunteers, who are part of Enactus Okanagan College, are the driving force behind Venture Okanagan, led this year by Lauren McKay.

GreenStep Solutions Inc., a local consulting firm focused on environmental sustainability, was the fortunate winner in Spring 2014’s Venture Okanagan event. “The Venture Okanagan process gives invaluable feedback and experience to start-ups,” says Angela Nagy, the CEO of GreenStep. “Participating in the pitching forum adds credibility and exposure that continues to pay off in the long term.” To date, her firm has worked with more than 1,200 businesses and organizations in several sectors, including private, public, non-profit and academic institutions.

There’s also the lure of a $5,000 prize for the event’s winner, provided by the title sponsor, Grant Thornton LLP. “The Okanagan is home to an amazing number of innovative entrepreneurs and businesses, and Venture Okanagan helps connect them with the capital, resources and relationships they need to grow and succeed,” explains Kevin Santos, Partner with Grant Thornton’s Kelowna office. “We are encouraged by the entrepreneurial spirit here, and are excited to be part of the upcoming Investor Forum.”

Beyond the prize and the chance to promote business ideas to local investors, Venture Okanagan is also a premium networking event. Tickets for the event are $40.88 and are available at Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and presentations start at 6 p.m.