ImagineNations Network - for Immediate Release
ImagineNations Network Announces its 2011 Business Plan Competition Winner
Winner Selected from Business Plan Competition Entrants from Across the Globe
Aug. 26, 2011 - ImagineNations Network today announced the winner of its 2011 Business Plan Competition. Chosen from among qualified entrants from across the globe, Kwame Kyei will receive the $10,000 prize to invest in the Ghana-based Ghana Bamboo Bikes Initiative to grow his enterprise.
Starting in January 2011, business plan competition entrants submitted a one- to two-page business concept plan that went through an initial round of judging. After judges winnowed the field to 10 finalists, the finalists worked with mentors through ImagineNations Network (Imagine-network.org), a platform of global and local portals that engages and connects young entrepreneurs to each other and to mentors, supporters, financing sources and markets to spur the development and growth of youth-led businesses, to develop and refine complete business plans for a final round of judging.
“ImagineNations Network is all about creating opportunities, and we are very excited that our first business plan competition attracted so many great venture ideas,” said Stefanie Harrington, ImagineNations Network’s program director. “One of the goals of the competition was to enable our large user base of mentors to help the entrepreneurs with their project ideas by providing industry and technical experience, helping with organizational strategies, editing business and project plans, evaluating team presentations and facilitating the networks necessary for long-term success.”
Finalists were judged on how innovative their business plan was, how well they understood the market and possible consumers, their development and funding strategies, and the overall plan. “In his business plan, Kwame demonstrated that he understood the market and consumers, and his overall plan was very impressive and innovative. The Ghana Bamboo Bikes Initiative is also socially responsible, which impressed the judges,” added Stefanie Harrington.
The Ghana Bamboo Bikes Initiative, operating in Kumasi, Ghana, seeks to address the problems of climate change, poverty, rural-urban migration and high unemployment among the youth in rural Ghana by creating employment opportunities and sustainable livelihood job skills for the youth through the building of high quality handcrafted second-generation bamboo bikes for the international export markets.
Kwame plans to invest the $10,000 in proceeds in the Ghana Bamboo Bikes Initiative to offer the Ghanaian population access to high-quality, cheaper transportation while operating as a socially responsible and 100% clean-energy business. While Kwame and the Ghana Bamboo Bikes Initiative made it through two rounds of judging and stood above his peers, this is just the beginning. He will continue to connect with mentors and entrepreneurs within the ImagineNations Network community to help his initiative grow and to spur others to grow their businesses.
About ImagineNations Network
ImagineNations Network (Imagine-network.org) is a platform of global and local portals that engages and connects young entrepreneurs to each other and to mentors, supporters, financing sources and markets to spur the development and growth of youth-led businesses. ImagineNations Network (INN) offers a one-stop platform for young people, NGOs, supporters, financing sources, commercial outlets, and others to interact virtually to promote youth-led entrepreneurship and economic development. The platform was developed by ImagineNations Group (www.imaginenations.org) in collaboration with Mercy Corps, and with support from Cisco Foundation and the Global Partnership for Youth Investment (GPYI) of the World Bank. ImagineNations® Group is a partnership-based global network that provides aspiring entrepreneurs with the financial capital, technologies, and business/leadership coaching that young women and men need in order to start micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises in emerging and frontier markets.