MOUNTAIN VIEW, California (PRESS RELEASE – May 25, 2009) – Fifty entrepreneurs will soon have more money in their pockets to give their businesses a boost in this tough economy. All are finalists in the Small Business United Grant Competition sponsored by Intuit Inc. (Nasdaq: INTU), maker of the best-selling QuickBooks® financial software. Each finalist will receive a $5,000 business grant, plus free Intuit software and services.
Judges selected the finalists from more than 1,900 submissions. The finalists hail from 43 cities in 23 states, coast to coast, and range from architects and accountants to restaurateurs and retailers.
But the race isn’t over yet. The finalists are now competing for an additional grand prize of $25,000, or one of four $10,000 runner-up grants. To win, they need America’s help.
To make their case, finalists created videos telling their personal business stories that are available at www.smallbusinessunited.com. The videos range from anecdotes about overcoming adversity to serving customers better during tough economic times. The public can view and rate the videos until May 31.
In addition, a judging panel including Anita Campbell of SmallBusinessTrends, Donna Ettenson of The Association of Small Business Development Centers, John Jantsch of Duct Tape Marketing, and Becky McCray of Small Biz Survival, will also evaluate the videos. They will select the grand prize and runner-up winners based on quality, creativity and the public ratings. The public opinion will account for 40 percent of the overall score and is based on whether the videos are inspiring, useful or funny.
“These finalists truly reflect the can-do spirit of small business and America’s entrepreneurs,” said Kiran Patel, executive vice president and general manager of Intuit’s small business group. “It was tough for the judges to narrow the list from the nearly 2,000 entries we received. We appreciate all of the businesses that entered the competition, for sharing their stories of inspiration and aspiration, and bringing the small business community together over the past few months.”
The competition is part of Intuit’s Small Business United initiative, launched earlier this year to give America’s 27 million small businesses a boost. More than 1 million entrepreneurs have visited the Small Business United Web site to seek advice from their peers and to take advantage of the campaign’s other offerings, which include free Intuit products, services and resources.
Small Business United Grant Competition Finalists
Steve Bardocz, Savance (Livonia, Mich.)
Melissa Baswell, Mountains of the Moon (Chicago, Ill.)
Maya Bhat-Gregerson, Compostable Plates, LLC (Vancouver, Wash.)
Andrew Brown, Global Language Network (GLN) (Washington, D.C.)
Jana Chang, Haute Fan Couture (St. Augustine, Fla.)
Payson Cooper, Payson & Co., LLC (New York, N.Y.)
Andria Davis, Brushy Mountain Publishing (Asheville, N.C.)
Joshua Davis, The Gelato Fiasco (Brunswick, Maine)
Charlotte Devine, Charlotte A. Devine, CPB Financial Management (Monroe, La.)
Dina DiNucci, Park Place Coffee (Portland, Oreg. )
Dorothy Fest, PiggyBack Books (Long Beach, Calif.)
Perry Foulke, Perry Foulke Makeup (New York, N.Y.)
Kimberly Funasaki, Little Ambassadors (Honolulu, Hawaii)
John Hand IV, Syzygic, LLC (Boulder, Colo.)
Tom Harding, Art Aids Art/Home in the ‘Hood (Altadena, Calif.)
Cathy Henry, J-Dig Cards (Dallas, Tex.)
LaRayne Jeffries, Angels Camp RV & Camping Resort (Rocklin, Calif.)
Maia Josebachvili, Urban Escapes (Great Neck, N.Y.)
Steve Kunert, SNK Enterprises, Inc. (Cedar Rapids, Iowa)
Michael Madden, Broadcasters Mentoring Group (Calabasas, Calif.)
Annie Maribona, Fat Fancy (Portland, Oreg.)
Eric Paul Meredith, Alter EatGo (Chicago, Ill.)
Roger Moore, Pura Stainless (Big Sky, Mont.)
Matt Raye Moreno, Timeless Imagery (Reno, Nev.)
Alison Mountford, Square Meals (San Francisco, Calif.)
Kim Moyer, Kaizen Farm (Meridian, Idaho)
Suzanne Nicksic, Organic Garden Company (Chicago, Ill.)
Nicole Palczynski, Gold ‘N Dulcinea (Santa Monica, Calif.)
Todd Petitt, Africa Bags (Loveland, Colo.)
Jennifer Pleiman, Focused Trainers (Los Altos, Calif.)
Eric Ratinoff, act3 (St. Louis, Mo.)
Paul Rosenfeld, FanMinder (Mountain View, Calif.)
Ioana Sherman, Ioana’s Music Lessons (Chapel Hill, N.C.)
Alice Shin, Kogi BBQ (La Crescenta, Calif.)
Wayne Siefert, Green Packaging, Inc. (Lansdale, Penn.)
Emily Mae Starr, StarrMatica Learning Systems (Clinton, Iowa)
Cathy Strobel, Southern Breeze Equestrian Center, Inc. (Sugar Land, Tex.)
Gen Tanabe, SuperCollege (Belmont, Calif.)
Kelly Tanabe, SuperCollege (Belmont, Calif.)
Valentina Tacchi, Valentina Fine Italian Hosiery (Oregon House, Calif.)
Rachel Tayse Baillieul, BayingHound (Columbus, Ohio)
Julie Theel, Pet Generation, (Rancho Mirage, Calif.)
Terre Thomas, Fairy Godmother (Minneapolis, Minn.)
Gillian Verga, Weightcircles (Los Gatos, Calif.)
Donna von Hoesslin, Betty Belts (Ventura, Calif.)
Amy Walton, Easy As Pie (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.)
Leslie West, BlueDotPapershop.com (Plymouth, Mich.)
Derrick Wills, ID Graphics, Inc. (Decatur, Ga.)
Kathy Wolper, Kathy’s Just Desserts, Inc. (East Norriton, Penn.)
Johnna Zeigler, Oregon Rain Soap (Tualatin, Oreg.)
o View the stories of the 50 finalists: http://community.intuit.com/contests
o Read and rate videos: http://community.intuit.com/contests?vtid=cltg
o Watch the Small Business United video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P9UEJZU-zsM
o Intuit Press Room: http://about.intuit.com/about_intuit/press_room/press_kit/smallbusinessunited/
o Intuit on Twitter: http://twitter.com/intuit
o Small Business United Blog: www.smallbusinessunitedblog.com
About Intuit Small Business United Campaign
Intuit’s Small Business United campaign is designed to bring America’s entrepreneurs together and to fuel their growth by providing free products, services and resources that help them attract customers, save money and make money. Visit www.smallbusinessunited.com for more information about the initiative and information on how to redeem free business tools and products from Intuit.
About Intuit Inc.
Intuit Inc. is a leading provider of business and financial management solutions for small and mid-sized businesses; financial institutions, including banks and credit unions; consumers and accounting professionals. Its flagship products and services, including QuickBooks®, Quicken® and TurboTax® software, simplify small business management and payroll processing, personal finance, and tax preparation and filing. ProSeries® and Lacerte® are Intuit’s leading tax preparation software suites for professional accountants. The company’s financial institutions division, anchored by Digital Insight, provides on-demand banking services to help banks and credit unions serve businesses and consumers with innovative solutions.
Founded in 1983, Intuit had annual revenue of $3.1 billion in its fiscal year 2008. The company has approximately 8,000 employees with major offices in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, India and other locations. More information can be found at www.intuit.com.
Intuit, the Intuit logo and QuickBooks, among others, are registered trademarks and/or registered service marks of Intuit Inc. in the United States and other countries.