All 6 finalists of the 2022 VSEDC Black Business Pitch Competition

Three black-owned startups competed in a 60-second business pitch competition

In February, VSEDC held an exciting online Black History Month celebration that included a 60-second Business Pitch competition for Black-owned startups and small businesses in Los Angeles County.  

Chosen from a field of more than 70 applicants, six finalists competed for cash prizes. They pitched their businesses to a panel of reps from traditional and non-traditional lenders as the audience of over 100 people from other small businesses and potential lenders. At the end of the event, the audience was asked who to give the $500 Audience Choice Award! 

How they were scored

The pitches were scored in the following five categories: 

  1. How well they told their story 
  2. Value Proposition – how well they distinguished themselves from the competition 
  3. How well they understood their impact on the market 
  4. Whether they made a clear ask for a loan 
  5. Did they close strong? 

Startups competed first, followed by small businesses. Come meet three new black-owned startups and see how they did. (We think they were pitch perfect.)

First Place Startup, and Audience Choice Award Winner – Eben Rey, NEIO Systems, The Array

First Place went to Eben Rey, owner of NEIO Systems with a product called The Array, which is a dynamic messaging system that improves community safety communications. Eben also won the Audience Choice Award.

Second Place Startup, Talia Boone, Postal Petals

2nd Place was captured by Talia Boone from Postal Petals, which is a farm-direct DIY floral arrangement company. 

3rd Place Startup – Lawrencia Blount, Lawrencia Bridal Couture

Finally, 3rd Place went to Lawrencia Blount from Lawrencia Bridal Couture, a luxury bridal brand boutique. 

If you like what you see, follow the links to their websites and support a black-owned business in LA County.