Tell us your next big idea for a chance to win $10,000 and other prizes.

We’ve teamed up with KeyBank’s Key4Women to bring women business owners in 16 Ohio counties a chance to share their ideas and win the resources they need to take their next big step.

Ready to pitch us an idea for a new business, product or service that expands your current business? Use this link to apply now through July 31, 2021.

Apply Now

    Contest Details

    SCORE and Key4Women share a common mission of helping small businesses get off the ground, grow and achieve their goals through education and mentorship.  With this contest, we’re working to help women owned businesses gain market visibility, access to capital and business development opportunities, all within a framework of community collaboration and engagement.

    Our prizes

    1 - Overall Grand Prize    $10,000

    1 - Start Up, Runner-up  $2,500

    1 - Existing Business, Runner-up   $2,500

    7 - Honorable mentions  $1,000

    Eligibility Requirements

    The contest is open to businesses that are:

    • At least 51 percent owned, controlled, operated, and managed by a woman or women.
    • The business must be headquartered in one of the counties of:  Ashtabula, Carrol, Cuyahoga, Erie, Geauga, Harrison, Holmes, Huron, Lake, Lorain, Medina, Portage, Stark, Summit, Tuscarawas or Wayne.
    • Proof of legal authority to transact business in the state of Ohio.
    • The business must have current annual sales of less than or equal to $3MM.
    • The female owned business must present a new business idea or new product or service that expands the current business. 
    •  All applications must be submitted using the official pitch contest online submission form.
    • Finalists must be able to attend the Pitch Contest Event, October 7, 2021, 1 p.m. ET at Tri-C Main Campus, 700 Carnegie Ave, Cleveland, OH 44115.

    Important Dates

    • Applications open June 1, 2021 
    • Pitch contest application submissions received no later than July 31, 2021, 11:59 p.m. ET
    • SCORE selection committee review, August 1 – 31, 2021
    • Official notification of the ten (10) finalists, September 1, 2021
    • Final pitch contest held at Tri-C Main Campus, October 7, 2021 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. ET  


    • SCORE coaches available to advise applicants on submission criteria as requested.   Mentoring could come in the form of introducing key contacts, instructional mentoring, advisory board services, strategy development, SWOT analysis, presentation, etc.

    Pitch Contest Questions,

    Request a Mentor  (Please let us know you are entering the pitch Contest)

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    Key4Women started in 2005 as a campaign to lend $1 billion to qualified women-owned businesses within three years. The program achieved that in two years and has now generated more than $12 billion in loans to women-owned businesses. Membership in Key4Women is free. In addition to helping women business leaders and owners tap into capital to build and grow their businesses, Key4Women members gain valuable access to a team of local Certified Key4Wome Advisors who advocate, connect and empower women on their journey to financial wellness. For more information, visit is Member FDIC