SANTA CLARA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Proving that the recession can create opportunities to grow or start a small business, Alibaba.com (HKSE: 1688) and Inc. today announced the 30 new entrepreneurs who have been selected to move on to the “Newpreneur of the Year” semifinalist round. With businesses ranging from recyclable furniture to online costume stores to insulated handbags for men and women, these 30 entrepreneurs will compete in New York, Chicago, Miami, Dallas, Seattle and Los Angeles for one of 12 spots in the next round.
“As we look beyond the recession toward ways to stimulate the economy, small business has increasingly been recognized as a key recovery factor,” said David Wei, chief executive officer, Alibaba.com. “Through the Newpreneur of the Year search, Alibaba.com is honoring those who embody this vision, while providing the funds and tools necessary to succeed during these trying times.”
Contestants in each semifinalist round will be hosted and evaluated by an esteemed panel of experts, including Bob LaPointe, President, Inc.; Kirk Aubry and Jim Schelskler, the Inc. CEO Project; Kelly Sang, general manager, Alibaba.com Americas; Bo Burlingham, Editor-At-Large, Inc.; and Tom Searcy, author of Whale Hunting: How to Land Big Deals and Transform Your Company, and RFPs Suck! How to Master the RFP System Once and For All to Win Big Business.
Following the semifinalist events, the 12 finalists will be profiled on www.inc.com/alibaba, where the public can vote for the businesses that they think have the most potential to revive the economy. Based on online voting, the top five Newpreneurs will be invited to the finale event in San Francisco on Nov. 18, 2009, where the grand prize winner will be revealed and win $50,000 to invest in their business. The four remaining finalists will take home awards totaling an additional $50,000.
In no particular order, the semifinalists competing in the six regional events throughout October include:
New York Semifinalist Event, Oct. 6 at the Glass Houses at the Chelsea Arts Tower
Chicago Semifinalist Event, Oct. 8 at the W Hotel
Miami Semifinalist Event, Oct. 13 at the W Hotel
Dallas Semifinalist Event, Oct. 15 at Hotel ZaZa
Seattle Semifinalist Event, Oct. 20 at the Edgewater Hotel
Los Angeles Semifinalist Event, Oct. 22 at the SLS Hotel
About Alibaba.com Limited
Alibaba.com Limited (HKSE: 1688) (HK.1688) is the global leader in business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce and the flagship company of Alibaba Group. Founded in 1999, Alibaba.com makes it easy for millions of buyers and suppliers around the world to do business online through three marketplaces: a global trade marketplace (www.alibaba.com) for importers and exporters; a Chinese marketplace (www.alibaba.com.cn) for domestic trade in China; and, through an associated company, a Japanese marketplace (www.alibaba.co.jp) facilitating trade to and from Japan. Together, its marketplaces form a community of 42 million registered users from more than 240 countries and regions. Alibaba.com also offers business management software solutions targeting small businesses across China under the "Alisoft" brand. Founded in Hangzhou, Alibaba.com has offices in more than 40 cities across Greater China, Japan, Korea, Europe and the United States.
About Inc. magazine
Founded in 1979 and acquired in 2005 by Mansueto Ventures, Inc. magazine (www.inc.com) is the only major business magazine dedicated exclusively to owners and managers of growing private companies that delivers real solutions for today's innovative company builders. With a total paid circulation of 724,110, Inc. provides hands-on tools and market-tested strategies for managing people, finances, sales, marketing, and technology.