Alaskan Wildlings LLC Receives Multiple Prizes in 2022 College of Business and Public Policy Business Plan CompetitionApril 11, 2022
The College of Business and Public Policy (CBPP) awarded $17,000 in prizes during its Perfect Pitch event Friday, April 8. The annual event is the culmination of the CBPP Business Plan Competition for UAA students and community members. Four finalists wowed the gathering of judges, entrepreneurs, UAA faculty and staff, and friends and family with their innovative ideas during a mini-trade show and investor pitch.
Alaskan Wildlings LLC, owned by Ali Ginter, took the Grand Prize ($8,000), Sustainability Award ($2,000) and First Fortune 500 Award ($1,000). Ginter is an entrepreneur and mother of four from Ketchikan who has built her business over the last few years. She was joined by her mother Trixie Bennet, who co-authored the business plan. Alaskan Wildlings offers a modern cloth diaper that is absorbable, comfortable, colorful, and adjusts as a baby grows. The business has applied for utility patent for its product, has an established customer base, and was seeking investment to further develop its brand and marketing. Judges noted they believe Alaskan Wildlings is a viable business that is bringing awareness to Alaska and Alaska culture, and that it has a lot of potential for growth.
Blue Collar Design LLC, owned by Ross Spencer and Joe Trout, earned second place ($4,000) for its Apex LadderBox, a unique storage solution that attaches to the top of a ladder. Spencer has a utility patent pending and prototype for the Apex LadderBox, which is designed to increase safety and convenience by providing a stable place for workers to keep tools and materials. Blue Collar Design was seeking funding to further develop the product and begin selling to individual customers. Spencer is graduating in May with a BBA in business management.
MyCy Pack, presented by Irene Sexton, won the People’s Choice Award ($2,000) for a concept to develop insulated shipping packaging made of fully biodegradable mycelium – or fungus. Sexton’s business idea was based on a patent developed by a group of UAA students who analyzed the potential for mycelium to be used for scaffolding. Sexton will graduate from UAA in May with a BBA in business management.
Chinook Cabinet Doors was also a finalist. Atlin Bell founded the company to provide an easy and cost effective way to replace cabinet doors. He presented a plan to help consumers refurbish cabinet doors by using a CNC router to create modern designs in their existing cabinetry. Bell was seeking funding to acquire the CNC router. Bell will graduate from UAA in May with a BBA in accounting.
Dr. Helena S. Wisniewski is professor of entrepreneurship and chair of UAA’s Management, Marketing, Logistics and Business Analytics Department. She organizes the CBPP Business Plan Competition. “This is an exciting time to be an entrepreneur,” she said. “In 2021, there were more initial public offerings than ever before. As an entrepreneur myself, I realize it’s a real roller coaster ride. My advice to the finalists is not to think, ‘What if this doesn’t work out for me?’, but to focus on ‘What if this turns out to be way better than I expected?’ ”
“At UAA we are excited about the work that Dr. Helena Wisniewski and the competitors are doing,” said UAA Provost Denise Runge. “It fits so beautifully with our mission of engaging the local community and advancing excellence through innovation.”
Watch the Perfect Pitch story from Alaska’s News Source.
Judges for the 2022 CBPP Business Plan Competition are dedicated to supporting entrepreneurship, innovation and Alaska start-ups. They are:
- Jon Bittner, State Director, Alaska Small Business Development Center (AK SBDC)
- Art Clark, Co-founder, Alaska Real Estate Associates (AREA)
- Jenny Former, Executive Director, Anchorage Re:MADE
- Evelyn Jacome, Project Manager, Alaska Center ICE
- Scott Jepsen, President, Business Resource Associates
- Allan Johnston, Chief Encouragement Officer
- Gary J. Klopfer, Co-owner and Member Manager, Alaska Pacific Beverage Company LLC
- James Kostka, Chief Operating Officer and Owner, Alaskan Data Solutions
- Steve Socolof, Managing Partner, Tech Council Ventures
- Dr. Charlene Walters, Entrepreneurship Coach
- Dr. Helena S. Wisniewski, Professor of Entrepreneurship & Chair, Department of Management, Marketing, Logistics, and Business Analytics, UAA College of Business and Public Policy
- Greg Wolf, Executive Director, World Trade Center Alaska (WTCAK)
- Joel Yarmon, Founder and Managing Director, Pipeline Capital Partners
- Joe Zimmermann, Owner/Director, Cook Inlet Marketing Group Inc.
Generous sponsors for the 2022 CBPP Business Plan Competition include these donors:
- Premier Partner: Anchor Point Foundation
- Supporting Partners: Alyeska Pipeline, GCI, Northrim Bank
- Partners: Alaska Investor Network, Tom Case Leadership Fellows Academy, Educational Legacy Fund
- Sponsors: Alaskan Data Solutions, Allan Johnston, Anchorage International Rotary Club