Merchant Innovation

Shopify Launches Innovation Competition

A five-day stay at the “Great Gatsby” mansion hobnobbing with celebrated entrepreneurs and ringing the New York Stock Exchange Opening Bell might sound like the inception of an entrepreneurial dream, but it will soon be a reality for some.

The glitzy reward will be offered to the winners of the sixth Shopify “Build a Business” competition, which the eCommerce platform just announced in partnership with the NYSE.

“This year we’re going back to our roots and focusing on what Shopify is all about: entrepreneurship,” said Tobi Lütke, CEO of Shopify. “Shopify was built for entrepreneurs. We want to help anyone with a great idea turn it into a million-dollar company in a really short time. It’s never been easier to start a business than it is today; we hope this competition is the kick in the pants that any aspiring entrepreneur needs to go get started.”

To compete, participants are required to start a new business from scratch and sell their products on Shopify. At the end of two months, the Top 5 businesses that brought in the most money will be announced as the winners.

For the five-day retreat at the Oheka Castle — popularly known as “The Great Gatsby” mansion, Shopify has partnered with several A-listers, who are well known for their business expertise, including: Daymond John from “Shark Tank;” Troy Carter, CEO of Atom Factory; Tom Farley, President of NYSE Group; and Mark Hoffman, President of CNBC, among others.

The entrepreneurial competition, which claims to be the world’s largest competition of its kind, last year attracted over 21,000 entrepreneurs who sold more than $120 million in products on Shopify. It has so far created nearly 90,000 new businesses that have sold about half a billion dollars’ worth of products on Shopify, according to a press release.

The competition, which stretches over eight months, will this year run from Oct. 1 to May 31, 2016.

 

 

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