LaunchPad semi-finalists announced

Gorham Savings Bank has named the semi-finalists for its LaunchPad business plan competition, which it announced in January.

From nearly 250 applicants, the bank chose 7 semi-finalists who will compete at a live pitching event on March 21 at the Portland Museum of Art for a chance to win $30,000 to put toward their business plan. At this event, three finalists will be chosen to move ahead in the competition. The presentations of those three finalists will be featured on the Gorham Savings Bank website from March 25 to April 8, where the community will be able to vote for their favorite candidate to win. The winner will be announced April 11.

The seven semi-finalists are…

Jeremy Litchfield – Atayne

Jan Anderson, Anthony Kelley, and Wayne Snyder – Coastal Farms and Foods Inc.

Christopher Kinkade – Green Bee Soda

Scott Rehart – Montecito Roadhouse Inc.

Ben Polito – Pika Energy LLC

Brett Richardson, Greg Williams – Resurgam Zero Food Waste

Claudia Raessler – Saco River Dyehouse

These 7 semi-finalists will pitch their business idea to a panel of judges at the March 21st event. The judges are Dr. Paul Ferguson, president of the University of Maine; Craig Denekas, president and CEO of the Libra Foundation; and Michelle Neujahr, entrepreneurial center director at Southern Maine Community College.

“We could not be more thrilled with the response to LaunchPad. We know one of the biggest barriers for entrepreneurs is the lack of capital when trying to bring their idea to fruition,” Chris Emmons, president and CEO of Gorham Savings Bank, said in a statement. “The number and quality of applicants underscores that the entrepreneurial spirit exists throughout Maine. We can’t wait to see the presentations on the 21st, learn more about their ideas, and share them with the larger community.”

Whit Richardson

About Whit Richardson

Whit Richardson is Business Editor at the Bangor Daily News. He blogs about Maine business, entrepreneurs and the economy.