Lori J. Light of Rocky Hill is the winner of the University of Hartford Entrepreneurial Center's 25th Anniversary Business Plan Competition, which was held on Tuesday, June 15. Six semi-finalists participated.
Light received the top prize for her plan for a mobile luxury pet grooming business. Light hopes to purchase a state-of-the-art, self-contained mobile pet grooming vehicle with power for equipment and water tanks with water to bathe animals. Light impressed the judges with her detailed presentation, which included extensive market research.
Light will receive a website consultation from Lemmee Online Business Solutions. The prize is valued at $1,000.
Two runners-up were also named. Ana Roman of Newington developed a plan for a tax return preparation service, specializing in assisting Hispanic and first-time tax preparers. Kathleen Mark Lewis of Hartford presented the business plan she wrote for a West Indian bakery she is about to open in Hartford. Roman and Lewis each will receive a $250 cash prize from the University and a 90 minute marketing consultation with Beacon Marketing or The Marketing Motivator, respectively, valued at $250.
Judges for the competition were: Richard Barredo of Quinnipiac Bank, Gary Besser of New Alliance Bank, Rex Fowler of the Hartford Community Loan Fund, Lyle Fulton of The Connecticut Bank and Trust, Patrick Larent of People's United Bank, and Lais Lingenfelter and Jennifer Socha of TD Bank.
Light, Roman, and Lewis are alums of the Entrepreneurial Center, which is part of the University's Center for Professional Development. The Center helps Connecticut women and men of all income levels achieve financial independence through self-employment. Its unique training program is designed to develop the business and the business owner. For more information, please visit www.hartford.edu/ec.