The Great Shop Showdown is more than an innovative marketing strategy, but a new and improved start for one lucky retailer. For one grand prize winner, Clematis Street in Downtown West Palm Beach, FL will become home for a new retail business. Coinciding with Independent Retailer Month, The Great Shop Showdown competition kicked off July 1 and is calling for entries through July 31. According to a recent press release, “Entrants can submit a wide range of retail concepts, from clothing boutiques or gourmet grocers to home decor, sporting goods or other specialty stores.” And while the chance to open a new independent retail store is rewarding enough, the West Palm Beach Downtown Development Authority (WPB DDA) has something even greater to offer.
One lucky entrepreneur will enjoy free rent for the first 12 months of a five year lease term in the sunshine state. The WPB DDA adds, “In addition to free rent, the winner will receive a one year advertising package; complimentary retail marketing services provided by the DDA and its public relations agency; start up business consulting and a loan of up to $25,000; monthly retail mentoring services; a one year membership with the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches; hotel accomodations at the Hyatt Place; and invaluable exposure to various media outlets during the competition and announcement of the winning submission.” After all submissions have been received semi-finalists will go through two more rounds of judging.
A pool of semi-finalists will be asked to submit a business plan. Then, three to five finalists will be given the opportunity to present their plan to the committee during a public panel, giving the community a voice in choosing the grand prize winner.