On Sept. 14, 2021, the third set of finalists for the 2021 Start Peninsula was announced following an online Micro Pitch Competition. The finalists were Bonilla Pet Studio, LetsVidya, and NerdFlex. in total, 10 pitchers participated.
- Bonilla Pet Studio is a photo studio for pets. Now there is something better than just cell phone images or normal photography studios that are not comfortable for most pets and their families.
- LetsVidya is a way for organizations to connect relationally with their teams and clients, at a time when meaningful social interactions are limited and challenging because people can't meet face to face.
- NerdFlex is a program that eliminates the negative stigma that "nerds" have no interest in being healthy or fit. NerdFlex targets Comic cons and other huge mainstream events that sell out arenas with a focus on fitness and health options.
Each finalist will receive a $500 prize and the chance to participate in the Wednesday, Nov. 3 Main Pitch Event where they will have an opportunity to win $5,000 to support their business growth and continuing access to local resources.
The next Start Peninsula Micro Pitch Competition will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 6. Early stage businesses are invited to apply to participate. The main pitch event will feature last night's winners as well as six companies that are already qualified to participate: C.A.S.S.I.E., EWedded, eZverifi, Green Light Auctions, Pocket Properties App, and Spellcross.
Judges for the third Micro Pitch Competition included:
- Rachel Fraizer, Associate Director of Miller Entrepreneur Center
- Blake Luse, Managing Director of Ferguson Ventures
- Will Turner, Sr. Vice President at Wells Fargo
Start Peninsula 2021 is hosted by the City of Newport News, in partnership with the cities of Hampton, Williamsburg, and Poquoson and the Counties of James City and York. Start Peninsula has been held annually in different Peninsula localities since 2012. For more information about Start Peninsula, visit its website, Facebook page, or the FAQ page.