PHOTO: Winners Announcement at the 2023 Manito Ahbee Pow Wow Pitch, (Photo by Janique Tessier).

Pow Wow Pitch returns to the Manito Ahbee Festival to celebrate Indigenous entrepreneurship

Calling all Indigenous entrepreneurs in Manitoba, register to win cash prizes for your business!

Pow Wow Pitch, an Indigenous-led non-profit organization that empowers and supports Indigenous entrepreneurs with access to capital, mentorship, training, and support, presented in partnership with RBC, Shopify, and Mastercard Canada, announces its collaboration with the Manito Ahbee Festival taking place in Treaty 1 Territory – Winnipeg, Manitoba on May 18, 2024. 

The Manito Ahbee Festival, held May 17-20, 2024 at the Red River Exhibition Park, celebrates Indigenous arts, culture, and music, featuring new events and partnerships. Hybrid Virtual events will continue in 2024 which will include Spirit Visions 48 hour film challenge. 

This year’s incredible lineup of events celebrating Indigenous culture and heritage makes Manito Ahbee the perfect place to showcase your business. 

How It Works 

To enter, vendors, attendees and entrepreneurs can pre-register for limited audition spots here:, with a few spots reserved on the lottery for those who just turn up and want to pitch. To audition, entrepreneurs will have 1-minute to Pitch their ideas or businesses for a chance to win! 

The top 10 pitchers will be paired with mentors before pitching to the judges and the Manito Ahbee community. Prizes include $5,000 for 1st Place, $2,500 for 2nd Place, $1,000 for 3rd Place, $500 for the Youth Prize, and $500 for the Fan Favourite. In addition, the 1st Place Winner will also get a Golden Ticket to the Turtle Island Finale to pitch for the Grand Prize of $25,000. 

North Forge is set to support Pow Wow Pitch at the Manito Ahbee Festival by providing a winning Indigenous entrepreneur participating in the Manito Ahbee Pow Wow Pitch with a 1-year membership to their Fabrication Lab, a prize valued at $1,750.

In addition to awarding prizes to Indigenous entrepreneurs, this partnership is supporting the Indigenous community and empowering entrepreneurs to thrive. Naomi Sarazin, Executive Director of Pow Wow Pitch comments, “I am thrilled to be bringing Pow Wow Pitch back to Treaty 1 Territory, and collaborating with our esteemed partners in creating a platform to empower and support Indigenous entrepreneurs. Together, let’s ignite the spirit of innovation and celebrate Indigenous entrepreneurship.”

“Supporting our entrepreneurs through Pow Wow Pitch and the Manito Ahbee Marketplace connects our people to the traditional trade economies of our ancestors,” said Lisa Meeches, Executive Director of the Manito Ahbee Festival. “The Manito Ahbee Sacred site is home to the original trade route, it’s our hope that we walk in those same footsteps our ancestors did. Manitoba is home to many well-established and growing Indigenous businesses, and this competition is an amazing opportunity for up-and-coming entrepreneurs to share their ingenuity and gain the tools needed to make it happen. We are so thrilled to welcome Pow Wow Pitch back to Treaty 1 Territory for a third year and are so excited to witness the talent of our community in this year’s competition.”

Join us at the Manito Ahbee Festival and pitch your business to win cash prizes up to $5,000! This is your opportunity to showcase your talent, share your story, and empower our community. So register now and be a part of the celebration!

All Indigenous entrepreneurs that pitch will also be automatically entered into the Turtle Island (North American) Pow Wow Pitch competition and will be welcomed into the Pow Wow Pitch community. All pitchers will get access to a free Indigenous Startup Program, have the opportunity to have their products and services be considered to be featured in the annual Pow Wow Pitch Box and on Pow Wow Market for socially-conscious customers looking to ‘Buy Indigenous,’ will receive a free .CA domain courtesy of CIRA, and a 60-day free Shopify Trial.

Visit to learn more and to pre-register to pitch.