New accelerator program to scale Indigenous-led businesses
On April 30, Pow Wow Pitch, North America’s premier pitch competition for Indigenous
Today, Pow Wow Pitch, North America’s premier pitch competition for emerging Indigenous entrepreneurs, announced its second annual Mailer Box in collaboration with Raven Reads to support early-stage Indigenous entrepreneurs to accelerate their growth.
Each year, Pow Wow Pitch provides emerging Indigenous-owned businesses with the opportunity to gain exposure and recognition, and access support, mentorship and funding to take their business to the next level.
In 2020, Pow Wow Pitch piloted a Gift Box, procuring products from current and former Pow Wow Pitch entrepreneurs, and in 2021, partnered with Raven Reads to scale the program from 125 Boxes to 800 boxes, which sold out in less than 3 days and supported 10 Pow Wow Pitchers and Alumni with a total of $70,000 in purchase orders, while delighting those who purchased the box.
This year, the Mailer Box Program is scaling further with 2,500 units, accelerating the growth of 10 Indigenous entrepreneurs with $200,000 in purchase orders.
2022 Pow Wow Pitchers and Alumni will have the opportunity to have Raven Reads purchase up to 2,500 units of their products for inclusion in the Box. Entrepreneurs will receive training and support to pitch their products to buyers and form strategic distribution partnerships to be included in the 2022 Box application process. Pow Wow Pitch and Raven Reads will announce selected products in August 2022.
“Indigenous entrepreneurs are creating incredible businesses connected with their culture that impact their communities,” said Sunshine Tenasco, Founder of Pow Wow Pitch. “We are proud to partner with Raven Reads to accelerate the growth of 10 Pow Wow Pitch businesses with a major purchase order and urge those who wish to support Indigenous entrepreneurs to purchase this year’s Pow Wow Pitch Box.”
“Raven Reads was founded to raise awareness of our collective past in Canada and about Indigenous cultures and economies,” said Nicole McLaren, Founder and CEO of Raven Reads. “Our business model and ability to curate, package and deliver high-volumes of products to customers provides a perfect conduit for global customers to learn more about Indigenous cultures while supporting the growth of Indigenous entrepreneurs.”
This year’s Box features beautiful artwork called Blooming by Indigenous Artist Emily Kewageshig. The piece selected for the Box’s design represents becoming, growing, nurturing and is a celebration of culture and the land.
“When we work together and lift each other, we create a pathway into the future for the generations to come,” said Artist Emily Kewageshig. “For this reason, I’m very excited to have my artwork featured on this year’s box, alongside products from Indigenous entrepreneurs! Allow my design to encourage you to keep blooming, flourishing and thriving – just as the flowers do.”
The inside of the Box also features a poem by Indigenous poet Tenille K Campbell, commissioned for Pow Wow Pitch called What If, which speaks to possibility and community.
“I was honoured to take part in this year’s Pow Wow Pitch Box because while this may be called a competition, in reality it’s a building block to community.” said Tenille K Campbell. “A place to step together, work with each other, and explore the possibilities shoulder to shoulder.”
Indigenous entrepreneurs can learn more about the 2022 Pow Wow Pitch Box Program here.
Today, we are proud to do our first release of 500 Boxes. Click here to order now.