Last updated on September 26th, 2019 at 12:59 pm
Rev-Up MKE is a Shark Tank-style live pitch competition hosted by Near West Side Partners for small businesses hoping to move into an empty storefront on Milwaukee’s near west side.
Alan Goodman, owner of A Goodman’s Desserts, was selected as the winner following a live pitch event in which five finalists pitched their business ideas to a panel of judges and audience members. The event was held Tuesday at The Rave.
“Winning Rev-Up MKE is a great confidence boost as a small business owner,” Goodman said. “This opportunity and this recognition mean the world to me. I’m looking forward to coming into this neighborhood more permanently and getting involved not just with my business but with other business owners and with the community.”
A Goodman’s Desserts specializes in bread pudding, butter and lemon cookies and lemon pound cake. It also previously participated in Near West Side Farmers Market.
As the Rev-Up winner, A Goodman’s Desserts will receive $10,000 from WaterStone Bank and $25,000 in in-kind services.
“A Goodman’s Desserts will now join the ranks of some of the world’s greatest start-ups located in the Near West Side, including iconic brands like Harley-Davidson and MillerCoors,” said Keith Stanley, executive director of NWSP. “We’re excited that Alan will be able to provide delicious baked goods for our residents and employees.”
Runner-up Inpower was awarded $4,000 and an additional $1,000 as the WaterStone Bank Audience Choice winner. Second-runner up, Ensure Transit, received $2,000 from Milwaukee-based payroll and benefits company zizzl.
All five finalists received mentorship, business training and consulting support as they prepared for their live pitches.
The panel of judges included: Doug Gordon, president CEO of WaterStone Bank; Jamie Westfahl, senior director global procurement of packaging, MillerCoors; Vincent Lyles, vice president of community relations for Advocate Aurora Health; Pete Cooney, founder of Pete’s Pops; andRay Seaver, founder and CEO of zizzl.
Also at the pitch event, Amy Narr, owner of 2018 runner-up and audience choice winner Tricíclo Peru MKE, was awarded $5,000 as the first Rev-Up MKE Alum of the Year. Triciclo Peru MKE plans to open its storefront location this fall next to Pete’s Pops on Vliet Street.