Key4Women Pitch Competition Selects Winners
10 women-owned business finalists from the South Sound and Greater Seattle Area delivered their pitch and became winners on September 15, 2022.
KeyBank’s Key4Women program, TheWMarketplace, University of Washington Foster School of Business, and University of Washington Tacoma Milgard School of Business announced that local business, Dotz Allergy Friendly Baked Goods, is the winner of a business pitch contest for women-owned businesses (WOBs) located in Seattle and Greater Puget Sound.
Owner A Kouture won the grand prize of $20,000, which will go toward growing Dotz, in Tacoma. Dotz Allergy Friendly Baked Goods is a manufacturer of allergy-friendly delicious treats for people with food sensitivities, medically modified diets, and overall health.
A Kouture was one of 10 finalists that were selected to compete for cash awards totaling $47,000. The UW Tacoma Milgard School of Business and the Foster School worked together to review and select the finalists from 95 applicants that satisfied the competition criteria. Businesses were required to include a detailed business plan, mini-market analysis and profit projections for their service or product. All were judged by a panel of sponsor representatives in one of two categories, start-up business or existing business.
Other cash winners include:
Runner up: Mattice Beauty Supply Tacoma $5,000 prize - Only black and women owned beauty shop in Tacoma featuring women owned products.
Runner up: Lina Kim DDS, PS, Seattle $5,000 prize - Mobile dentistry- Floss Boss- will bring dental services to the patients and give back to the community.
Bella’s Pet-Friendly Kitchen, LLC $2,500 - Seattle-based manufacturer of premium food for dogs to enjoy.
Cirkled In Inc. $2,500 - Seattle Young professionals’ cloud-based platform for GenZ youth to showcase their professional achievements and stay connected.
Fanatio, Inc. $2,500 - Tacoma gamified social platform generating a fun and comprehensive fan experience with college and pro sports teams.
Onsight Physical Therapy, LLC, $2,500 - Tacoma cash-based business that provides physical therapy consultation and personal training.
The Bajan Station, LLC $2,500 - University Place, WA - Food service operating as a booth at local farmers markets serving fresh nutritious Caribbean dishes.
The City Loo $2,500 - Kirkland, WA - Hassle-free option to ensure pets potty needs are met.
The Neighborhood Plant Project, LLC $2,500 - Tacoma innovator receives donated plants, to be replanted and distributed to elderly and disabled people who may be homebound.
UW Foster School of Business provided application support to women-owned businesses throughout the application process. Plus, a valuable workshop was offered to help them prepare their pitches.
“We congratulate A and her team at Dotz Allergy Friendly Baked Goods on winning the grand prize. Their pitch was inspiring, and we are so glad to help them grow and expand,” said Rachael Sampson, national director, Key4Women. “Women business owners and leaders positively impact our economy and communities in powerful ways every day, which is evident based on the strength and diversity of the applications we received.”
To be eligible, businesses were required to be 51 percent owned, controlled, operated, and managed by a woman or women. They must also be headquartered in King, Pierce, Snohomish, Thurston, or Kitsap counties.
The finalists presented a 4-minute pitch and fielded questions for six minutes on September 15th at Paccar Hall, UW Seattle where the event took place.
Final awards were chosen by a panel of five judges, which included:
• Kate Isler, CEO & Co-Founder of TheWMarketplace
• Jimmy Ng, KeyBank, Sr. Business Banking Relationship Manager
• Matt Hill, KeyBank Seattle Cascades Market President
• Julie Pittsinger, Owner, Karma Vineyards
• Faye Stephens, Owner, Ezell’s Famous Chicken
Criteria used to determine winners included the quality of the presentation, clarity of business vision and mission, economic impact of the idea and the soundness of value proposition.