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Competition progess part 3

July 31, 2010

(continued from yesterday)…..

The whole idea of Mass Challenge was to get businesses not only started in Massachusetts but to get them to stay in Massachusetts.  They want to help people with random ideas start their businesses by giving them free resources such as mentors, advice, and services.  I absolutely love the premise.  I think there are so many people out in the world with great idea, but they have no idea how to implement them- they either lack the knowledge, connections, funding, or expertise.  If Mass Challenge was around 5 years ago, I’m certain I would’ve been able to implement my shoe idea back then.  Because Mass Challenge is in effect driving the Bay State’s economy, the governor has kicked in a sizeable amount of funding to the organization.

CobbledGOFF_468x746

Look at Gwyneth Paltrow trying to walk on cobblestone streets in these ridiculously high and super skinny stilettos!

This is what all the girls in Boston look like as they try to walk about town on a Saturday evening!

So, the first round had under 500 applicants and you had to submit a 2 page executive summary.  As soon as you submitted, you were to go out and try to get people to vote for you, get “endorsements” from influential people in the community, and get as much done for your business in a short period of time.  The Round 1 judging was completely online, from the written entry, and a short up to 2 minute Video of your product or business idea.

commuting woman

It’s the commuters that will thank us the most for these shoes!

They usually have to bring extra shoes in their bag, and when you’re going on an interview (like it looks like this woman might be doing), you look silly bringing a padfolio and a super huge purse with you!

Then, Mass Challenge cut the number of applicants down to 300 applicants, who had to pitch in person.  10 minutes of pitching with a powerpoint to judges (former VC’s, finance execs, entrepreneurs, influential business mentors) and there was a 10 minute Q & A session.  After that, they would cut the competition down from 300 to the top 100 finalists.

bridal_party

Brides always want their bridesmaids to have the same shoes , but depending on the height of the girls, they might want short or higher heels.  Looks like these bridesmaids had to let each girl choose their own heel height.

Last Wednesday I got a call from John Harthorne saying, We are having a press conference tomorrow and a few of the tv folks, newspapers, magazine editors, etc.. have requested that you be there so they can interview you.  We will be announcing the top 100 finalists, but I’m not telling you if you’ve won or not – I just got some requests that you be there.  So, I showed up and there were 3 other finalists there as well.  Just before John went on television, he told me I won and he wanted me to talk.  I spoke for about a minute and it was being recorded, then I got asked to get interviewed by one of the news anchors for NESN (New England Sports Network).

I got interviewed by several people.  The show is called Shining TV by Moody Street productions and will air in September just before a Red Sox Game.   The next day the Boston Herald called me and asked if I could go down to their studio for a photo shoot and an interview.  The next day, I was on the FRONT PAGE of the Boston Globe and in the Boston Herald with my picture and 2 big articles about myself and 1 other contestant.  The next day NECN (New England Cable News) called me and wanted to set up an interview for television.  And the following day a representative from Inc, magazine (which I absolutely love by the way) called me for the same reasons.

christina_aguilera_shoe_collection

The average girl has over 37 pairs of shooes in their closet,  unless of course you are Christina Aguileira !

So, it’s been a whirlwind of excitement and press for the past few days and I’m very excited about it all.  I now, desperately need to get a working prototype made.  Myself and some engineers from the Olin School of Engineering (Associated with Babson College) have been working for the past 2 months and trying to cut up old high heels, make shoes out of styrofoam, modeling clay, and plaster of paris.  We really need someone with a machine shop who can do injection molded plastic and incorporate metal.  We have 3 drawings that need to be transferred into a product that we can hold in our hands!

gold shoes

Please let me know if you or someone you know, might know either a mechanical engineer, an industrial shoe designer, a prototype maker, a machine shop operator, etc…

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