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Kentucky Innovation Network
Vegy Vida Wins Entrepreneur Pitch Competition in Covington
Health food startup receives prize to grow business
COVINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 29, 2014) – A team of Northern Kentucky brothers is developing a product to encourage kids to eat their vegetables. Now they’ve received a significant boost in growing their business.
Josh and Jared Young presented their product, Vegy Vida, to a panel of local judges during the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development’s entrepreneur pitch competition in Covington Thursday. For the idea, their company, Healthy Nation LLC, received a cash prize and the opportunity to present to the Kentucky Angel Investors Network in Frankfort this fall.
Healthy Nation’s vision is to make healthy foods taste great. Vegy Vida is an all-natural spray that reduces the bitterness of vegetables by blocking the bitter taste receptors on the tongue. The spray, which is applied directly to the veggies, also adds flavors to convey foods that are more desirable.
“We are very thankful for the opportunity to compete against some great teams at the pitch contest,” said Josh Young. “The support we have received from Northern Kentucky is simply amazing and has enabled us to refine our business to ensure we are ready to go to market.”
“The event and the presenters were a showcase of the depth and breadth of Kentucky’s entrepreneur ecosystem in our region,” said Casey Barach, director of the Covington Office of the Kentucky Innovation Network. “Presenters included high school and college students and local startup companies. More than 50 angel investors also were represented.”
The Covington event is one of seven entrepreneur pitch competitions happening statewide. The next event will be held this fall in Lexington. Previous competitions were held in Ashland, Pikeville, Murray, Elizabethtown, Richmond and Louisville.
The event is sponsored by the Office of Entrepreneurship within the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development, along with the Kentucky Angels Network and the Kentucky Innovation Network. For more information on the competition, visit kyinnovation.com.
Last year, the Cabinet successfully launched the Kentucky Angel Investors Network. Kentucky Angels brings new ventures and accredited investors together via monthly online meetings, providing investors access to form deals and partnerships with entrepreneurs statewide. Membership is open to those accredited investors in and outside the state who are passionate about investing in Kentucky companies. To learn more about Kentucky Angels, visit www.kyangels.net.
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The Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development is the primary state agency in Kentucky responsible for encouraging new jobs and investment in the state. New capital investment announced in Kentucky in 2013 totaled more than $3.3 billion, spurring more than 14,000 projected new jobs. Information on available industrial properties, workforce development assistance, incentive programs, community profiles, small business development and other economic development resources is available at www.ThinkKentucky.com.