There's something different about a Mount Royal pitch competition

Most forward-thinking universities have a entrepreneurship pitch competition. They are often tied to a business plan class, involve teams of 4 or 5 students, and have little to do with the really hard work of actually launching a venture. We do things a little differently at Mount Royal.

Of course, we do have many classroom pitches which are critical to learning, but the annual JMH LaunchPad Pitch Competition is far more "real' than that. There are no marks on the line - the only thing pushing the students is their entrepreneurial drive. There are no weak team members - small, diverse teams are the norm. There is no sense that it's over when the pitches finish. For our students, win or lose, the real work is just beginning. The real work of building their business.

The 4th annual JMH LaunchPad Pitch Competition reminded the community of how Mount Royal students are not only studying entrepreneurship, but they are actually doing it. Zac Hartley opened the night by sharing that he had an incredible $50,000 in sales of his beautiful Smoke Barrels. And when Green Cup told us about their $10,000 in revenue selling advertising on compostable coffee cups, you knew that you were clearly witnessing a Mount Royal pitch competition. These students are not simply hoping to be entrepreneurs, they are entrepreneurs.

Two hundred high-energy supporters watched seven incredible Mount Royal student ventures compete for over $75,000 in cash and in-kind services. The judges of Nan Eskenazi, Alice Reimer, Rod Brown, and Ryan Heal had the difficult task of announcing the following winners, and we couldn't be more proud and inspired.

Smoke Barrel

Zac Hartley

Smoke Barrel manufactures custom hand crafted hot and cold smokers from old wine and whiskey barrels. The most beautiful smoker on the market can also be customized to tailor the product for the most discerning customer.

JMH & Co Award: $10,000

BUSY Foundation Award: $10,000

Stikeman Elliott LLP Legal Services: $10,000 (in-kind)

Green Cup

Emily Bartlett and Ozzy Lang

Green Cup is a social enterprise reducing the amount of coffee cup waste in Canada. We sell advertisements on compostable cups and distribute those cups in the advertiser's target market.

JMH & Co Award: $10,000

Institute for Environmental Sustainability Award: $2,500

Nomad Eco Products

Zachary Champoux

Nomad Eco Products produces a 100% recycled yoga mat that mends our relationship with the planet by making what is torn, whole again. The yoga mats are made from recycled denim and are as unique as they are environmentally friendly.

JMH & Co Award: $10,000


Brad Williamson

Tang is a geographic-based, temporary social media network that allows users to see what people are up to around them. Users can search for relevant content based off of a hashtag, within a particular vicinity, or both. The user controls how long the content exists so they can share silly moments without the infinite history of most social media.

JMH & Co Award: $10,000

Little Blue Cloud

Carille Mendoza and Michaela Day

Little Blue Cloud is an online/app-based resource for students struggling with depression and anxiety. Features such as an anonymous peer support chat system and a self-help database provide a comfortable, non-stigmatized environment where users can talk to others facing similar situations.

Institute for Community Prosperity Award: $2,500

Design4Change Marketing Services: $5,000 (in-kind)

The Well Brewing Company

Quinn Wilton

The Well Brewing Company is Alberta's first community driven craft brewery and well-positioned to take advantage of the booming craft beer industry. Members receive exclusive access to member only beer, tasting events, and democratic voting on names and the types of beer being produced.

BUSY Foundation Award: $5,000