A&E, RocketHub, and Comcast Business to Host Project Startup Entrepreneur Forums in Boston, Detroit and Provo and Provide $60,000 in Cash Prizes and Services May 5, 2014

image

NEW YORK and PHILADELPHIA – April 28, 2014 – A&E, RocketHub and Comcast Business have joined forces to launch Project Startup Entrepreneur Forums, a unique series of live events bringing together some of the best and brightest entrepreneurial minds in three U.S. cities; Boston, MA, Detroit, MI and Provo, UT. These forums will host aspiring entrepreneurs, local businesses, business students, and community leaders as they share insights and best practices about launching or growing a small business. A live panel discussion will be followed by a pitch competition featuring three pre-selected local businesses. One Grand Prize winner for each city will be awarded $15,000 in cash prizes and technology services from Comcast Business and A&E. Two runners up for each of the three cities will receive $2,500.

image

Project Startup is a multi-platform brand initiative focused on supporting the new American entrepreneur. Whether it’s the chefs on Wahlburgers® or the buyers on Storage Wars®, A&E’s unique brand of original programming emphasizes the new entrepreneurial spirit in the nation today. Working with business service provider Comcast Business and crowdfunding platform RocketHub, Project Startup supports small businesses and helps aspiring entrepreneurs take their innovative ideas to the next level. With the help of RocketHub, attendees will also learn about technology’s latest role in launching successful startups and the basics of crowdfunding, an increasingly popular method of financing small business growth.

image

U.S. Bureau of Labor research indicates that entrepreneurs and small businesses led the way in creating new jobs as the U.S. pulled out of the 2009-2011 recession, accounting for 67 percent of the net new jobs compared to larger firms (>500 employees).  From financing a new small business, and scaling up to meet increased demand to getting back on track after a failed venture, Forum attendees will hear from a panel of experts offering strategies to help enterprising business owners succeed and contribute to this vital part of the U.S. economy.

The Pitch Competition is open to eligible small business owners. Those interested are encouraged to visit ProjectStartupLive.com for the Official Rules and to submit an entry. Three small businesses selected as finalists will be featured in the live entrepreneur forum with the opportunity to pitch the Project Startup panel judges. Attendance is open to the public on a first come, first served basis and attendees are encouraged to RSVP at ProjectStartupLive.com. The Provo event is May 20, Detroit is June 4, and Boston is June 10.

image

“Small businesses and entrepreneurs are vital for a healthy American economy,” said Project Startup creator Libby H. O’Connell, Ph.D., SVP Corporate Outreach, A+E Networks. “They are the backbone of what makes our country so great. In Boston, Detroit and Provo, we look forward to gathering business leaders who are continuing to strengthen a thriving future for their communities.”

“Comcast Business is committed to supporting small businesses, and Project Startup is an ideal opportunity for us to help entrepreneurs take their spirit of innovation to the next level,” said Karen Schmidt, vice president, Comcast Business. “As a technology leader, we understand first-hand the importance and role technology plays in not only growing existing businesses, but also launching successful startups. That’s why our involvement with Project Startup is such a strong fit for us.”

"Project Startup provides an outstanding opportunity for entrepreneurs, enabling access to funding and pathways to new audiences. RocketHub is excited to deepen engagement with the Provo, Detroit and Boston markets, alongside our partners A&E Networks and Comcast Business,” added Brian Meece, CEO RocketHub.

About Comcast Business

Comcast Business, a unit of Comcast Cable, provides advanced communication solutions to help organizations of all sizes meet their business objectives. Through a next-generation network that is backed by 24/7 technical support, Comcast delivers Business Internet, Ethernet, TV and a full portfolio of Voice services for cost-effective, simplified communications management.  For more information, call 866-429-3085. Follow us on Twitter @ComcastBusiness and on other social media networks at http://business.comcast.com/social.

About RocketHub

RocketHub is a top crowdfunding platform that has helped thousands of entrepreneurs raise millions of dollars globally. Part of RocketHub’s mission is to educate the public on the power of the crowdfunding model. As a result, the founders have lectured on crowdfunding at top schools and conferences, and have even testified in the U.S. Congress on the power of online fundraising.

About A&E

Now reaching 100 million homes, A&E is the home to 100% original content that inspires and challenges audiences to BE ORIGINAL.  A&E offers a diverse mix of high quality, uniquely immersive entertainment ranging from the network’s original scripted series, including “Bates Motel” and “Longmire” to signature non-fiction franchises, including “Beyond Scared Straight” and “Storage Wars.”  The A&E website is located at aetv.com.  Follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/aetv and Facebook at facebook.com/AETV.  For more press information and photography please visit us at press.aenetworks.com.