Telus partners with Arlene Dickinson to launch pitch competition with $100,000 top prize

arlene dickinson

Telus has launched a new competition that will see Canadian small businesses receive up to $150,000 in prizes.

CEO of District Ventures and Dragons’ Den dragon Arlene Dickinson will be the lead judge for Telus Pitch, which is asking Canadian entrepreneurs to share why a $100,000 top prize would help them achieve key business goals.

“I’ve worked with hundreds of entrepreneurs over the course of my career and I know firsthand what it takes to build a successful business from the ground up; $100,000 when you’re a startup or an early-stage business is equivalent to winning the lottery. It means everything,” said Dickinson. “But the Telus Pitch is not only providing financial support, it’s providing mentorship and resources to help Canadian small business owners achieve the next step in their dream, and I’m excited to take part.”

Two runners-up will receive $10,000, while one impact startup will be selected by a panel of Telus Community Investment team members to receive a $10,000 cash prize, plus $10,000 to donate to the charity of their choice. One promising startup that is making “significant strides” in the industry will be selected to receive $10,000 in cash, two Samsung devices, and mentoring and marketing services from startup marketing firm Eighty-Eight.

Select finalists will be provided ongoing mentorship opportunities from industry experts.

“The inaugural Telus Pitch is a contest we’re very proud of because the winners will receive so much more than cash prizes. We’ll provide entrepreneurs with national exposure and connect them with the best minds in Canadian small business for ongoing support,” said Suzanne Trusdale, vice-president of Small Business at Telus. “Entrepreneurs are the heart of Canada’s economy, and we want to accelerate their success. These unique experiences are invaluable, and to have a shot at winning, entrepreneurs need only do what they do every day; pitch their business.”

The judges include Trusdale, Bruce Poon Tip, founder of G Adventures; Sunil Sharma, managing director at Techstars Toronto; Erin Bury, managing director of Eighty-Eight, and Mark Childs, chief brand officer at Samsung Canada.

Entrepreneurs interested in participating can apply here until October 29. Three semi-finalists will be invited to pitch all six judges in Toronto on November 13 on how they plan to use the $100,000; the final winner will be announced live at the event.

Jessica Galang

Jessica Galang

Jessica Galang is BetaKit's News Editor.