Finalists unveiled for Peterborough Cubs’ Lair young entrepreneur competition

The finalists have been announced for the Cubs' Lair competition in Peterborough. Innovation Cluster

Five finalists have been announced for the annual Cubs’ Lair competition in Peterborough, which recognizes young, aspiring entrepreneurs.

The finalists will showcase and pitch their innovative startup to a panel of judges on Nov. 22 at the Gordon Best Theatre. The event, starting at 6 p.m., is hosted by Innovation Cluster, FastStart Peterborough and the Trent Youth Entrepreneurship Society.

READ MORE: Bear’s Lair competition returns to Peterborough for another year

“We had so many amazing applications this year and an extensive range of innovative ideas,” stated Rosalea Terry, the Innovation Cluster’s marketing manager and senior innovation specialist. “Each participant shows they are ready to take their businesses to the next level, it’ll be exciting to see them pitch.”

The finalists are:

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  • Jeremy Brooks – AVROD
  • Dylan Trepanier – Alexander Optical
  • Cody Cameron and Joshua Williams – Devout Fitness
  • Mariah Eshkakogan and Madawi Abunayyan – Grand Najd
  • Dillon Ahola – We

The business ideas range from virtual reality innovation, mobile apps, to an apparel line that promotes inclusiveness.

The Innovation Cluster held workshops to help the finalists prepare for their presentations in front of judges Helen Smith (controller at Part Time CFO Services), Jenn Olauson (dean of business at Fleming College) and two more judges yet to be announced.

Judges will select a winner deemed startup with the most potential. The winner receives $10,000 towards building their business including incubator space at the Innovation Cluster along with mentoring from established startups.

Last year’s winner, Richard Cochrane, is growing his business, Status Exempt, which aims to make it easier for First Nations shoppers to shop online.

“I always thought I had a good idea, but pitching the idea and having business owners and other entrepreneurs agree was a great feeling,” stated Cochrane. “Cubs’ Lair was a great way to help validate my business and improve pitch skills.”

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