Competition Organizers Want to Hear Your I.D.E.A's

    For the past three years, Texoma entrepreneurs have brainstormed, cultivated their ideas, and created, all in an effort to improve the local economy.
    Dr. Jeff Stambaugh, MSU's Lalani Center director, says, "We've created about 10 full-time jobs over the course of I.D.E.A. WF."
    Nine companies have been named first, second, or third place winners during the past three competitions.
    Stambaugh says some businesses have flopped, but others, such as last year's first place winner, are flourishing.
    "Midwest Waste, those are some of the trash cans people drive by all the time, they're growing. Very important for the contest, though, they're growing in other parts of Texas outside of Wichita, Archer, and Clay counties. That creates jobs here because this is the company headquarters," Stambaugh says.
    The company has almost doubled in size since winning the start-up cash and in-kind prizes from I.D.E.A.
    Last year's second and third place winners, the Taxidermist Woodshop and N.E.T. Audio, are still in operation.
    "We knew when the judges selected them that these were very small companies that were going to grow slowly, but we knew they had good growth potential, and that's exactly what they're doing," Stambaugh says.
    Businesses must project that more than 50-percent of revenue will come from outside of Wichita, Archer, and Clay counties and that it must create at least three new jobs.
    They may be existing or start-up businesses.
    Stambaugh says he hopes as the competition grows, so, too, will the number of jobs.
    "Like all entrepreneurs, that number is not yet big enough, but we hope it's going to get bigger, and you have to be patient." 18:13:07
    If you have an idea, you still have plenty of time to enter the competition.
    There are orientation sessions Tuesday at noon, and Thursday evening at 7 in room 189 of MSU's Dillard College of Business.
    During that time, you'll learn more about the competition and learn how to write an effective executive summary, so your idea can stand out from the rest.

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