Sorrell College students compete for $1,000 prize in Sorrell 360 Center’s first pitch competition with the IDEA Bank

Alden Barentine, a junior accounting major from Holtville, came out on top with his pitch for 12:5 Coffee. (TROY photo/JOEY MEREDITH)

Alden Barentine, a junior accounting major from Holtville, came out on top with his pitch for 12:5 Coffee. (TROY photo/JOEY MEREDITH)

Troy University’s IDEA Bank and the Sorrell 360 Center have partnered together for their first Business Pitch Competition where one of four students from the Sorrell College of Business had a chance to win $1,000 for their business.

The four students underwent an eight-week training program where they were taught how to use digital tools, capitalize on opportunity, and how to pitch and present a business idea to an audience. The experience culminated in a juried pitch competition on Dec. 1.

“I would encourage people that, if you’ve got the ideas, you’ve got the ability to go for it. You never know until you try,” Troy Bank & Trust President Jeff Kervin, one of the event’s judges. 

In addition to Kervin, judges included Derrick Brewster of 525 Technologies, Pike County Chamber of Commerce President Dana Sanders, and Katie Thomas, of AlabamaWorks.

“It was really neat that I got to be a part of the group of this competition… it was truly an honor,” said Noah Stewart, a senior global business and marketing major from Chelsea.

Competitors were judged on their presentation, business plan, and projected success rate. Each student was given the opportunity to showcase their business idea and how they plan to execute it. Presentations included the product or service, their inspiration, and the logistics of their specific business. Judges then had a chance to ask questions. Each competitor was then graded and given a score from the four judges. 

Alden Barentine, a junior accounting major from Holtville, came out on top with his pitch for 12:5 Coffee, a truck-based business where quality coffee goes to the customer rather than the customer coming to a coffee shop. He plans to start his business in Huntsville and offer his products and services at events such as football games, school competitions, and other social events. 

“I fell in love with the specialty coffee industry when I started working at Fuse Coffee here in Troy, and that opened my eyes to how fun and exciting owning my own coffee business can be,” Barentine said. “Winning this competition helped me prove to myself that my business can succeed, and I am capable of starting it.” 

 The pitch competition is available from the IDEA Bank on its Facebook page. For more information about TROY’s IDEA Bank visit the website at troy.edu/ideabank.

Four Sorrell College of Business students were selected to participate in the Sorrell 360 Center's first-ever pitch competition at the IDEA Bank. (TROY photo/JOEY MEREDITH)
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