CHICAGO, IL – In celebration of the 10th anniversary, MillerCoors is doubling the grand prize money of its signature, national business plan competition, the MillerCoors Urban Entrepreneurs Series (MUES) from $50,000 to $100,000. The award-winning program, which debuted in 1999, provides training and resources to aspiring entrepreneurs, in both starting and maintaining a successful business, while offering a unique opportunity for young entrepreneurs to compete for substantial business grants.
“Over the past ten years, the MillerCoors Urban Entrepreneurs Series (MUES) has been honored to host a program that provides invaluable resources enabling entrepreneurs to turn their aspirations into achievement,” said Larry Waters, director of multicultural relations for MillerCoors. “We have a long established commitment to the many communities that we serve, and the MUES Business Plan Competition is an ideal way to ensure their continued economic development and advancement by educating and inspiring young professionals in the pursuit of their business goals,” he adds.
The program is not without noteworthy community advocacy and support. And, for the second consecutive year, the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce has endorsed MUES in an effort to encourage more Hispanics to take advantage of the opportunity. “Through our network of more than 200 member chambers and organizations, it is our desire to help share the availability of this much-needed resource, in the hope of spurring greater participation,” states Augustine Martinez, president and CEO of the USHCC. “Given the current economic climate, it is vital that small businesses in our communities seek non-traditional means of establishing and infusing their businesses with capital. We commend MillerCoors for actively engaging in the empowerment of this next generation of business leaders, and we’re proud to be a partner in the program’s success.”
Waters notes that MUES has re-launched its interactive website, www.millercoorsmues.com, the resource for everything MUES-related, from Webinar registration, to accessing an application and submitting a business plan to the competition. Continuing its commitment to social responsibility, MUES has moved to a paperless, electronic business plan entry submission format through the website. Additionally, the site permits tomorrow’s entrepreneurs to query notable business leaders, to gain invaluable insight from previous winners through their blogs on MUES Talk and access behind-the-scenes competition activity via MUES-TV. Web users can also use the site to get an inside look at the competition, including the oral interview process and judges’ backgrounds, while perusing relevant business and entrepreneurial articles.
“Economic empowerment and entrepreneurial advancement are crucial to the coming generations, and they’re especially essential in multicultural communities where such opportunities are not as available,” said Jose Ruano, manager, multicultural relations, MillerCoors. “Programs like MUES are rare, but imperative, as the demographics of the U.S. continue to diversify to include more communities of color. As we commemorate ten years of success with MUES, we found it only fitting to raise the stakes to a $100,000 business grant for the top winner, along with four additional grants of $25,000.”
The 2009 MUES ePowerLunch Webinar Series featured one-hour expert discussion on various business topics including:
— Putting a Brilliant Idea to Paper – Developing a Workable Business Plan
— Do the Math – Understanding the Financials
— Inc. vs LLC – Choosing the Right Legal Structure
— Starting a Business in Tough Economic Times
— Knowledge is Power – Knowing and Communicating Your Niche
— Tech Your Biz – The New Face of Marketing using Web 2.0 tools
Webinars are available as downloadable podcasts via the MUES website.
Call for Entries – Deadline approaching
An integral component of MUES is the Business Plan Competition, which concludes with grants awarded to aspiring professionals to invest as start-up capital for their new or existing businesses. This year’s top winner will be awarded a $100,000 grant, and four others will receive grants of $25,000 each. The competition is open to participants between the ages of 21 and 35, and the deadline for entries is Thursday, October 1, 2009 at 5:00 p.m. (CDT). Throughout the history of the MUES program, approximately 1,500 business plans have been submitted and MillerCoors has awarded over $1 million, benefiting more than 100 urban entrepreneurs nationwide. It is estimated that 50 percent of these businesses are currently operational, benefiting urban communities by providing jobs and sustaining longterm economic growth and development in sometimes disenfranchised communities.
MillerCoors has partnered with the Atlanta Business League, the Chicago Urban League, the Detroit Urban League, the Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce, the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Greater Dallas, the Urban League of Greater Dallas and North Central Texas, Recycling Black Dollars of Los Angeles, the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee and the Milwaukee Urban League.
For all information on MUES, including official rules, application and requirements of the Business Plan Competition and helpful resources for developing a business plan, visit www.millercoorsmues.com.