By SEMA Editors
Reid Lunde, owner and founder of Kaizen Speed, was the 2019 SEMA Launch Pad winner.
Young entrepreneurs, students and business owners looking for an opportunity to launch their products into the $44.6 billion automotive aftermarket industry can apply now for the SEMA Launch Pad program. The deadline to enter the 2020 SEMA Launch Pad, presented by the Young Executives Network (YEN), and compete for a top prize that includes $10,000 and exhibit space at the SEMA Show is May 3.
“SEMA Launch Pad has emerged as the event every young entrepreneur circles on the calendar at the beginning of the year,” said Nathan Ridnouer, SEMA vice president of councils and membership. “It is a platform unlike any other that has brought brilliant ideas, innovations and individuals to center stage. We’ve been privileged to witness the next generation continue to push the envelope and deliver year after year. This industry is filled with passionate young entrepreneurs, and we can’t wait to see who will surface from this year’s competition.”
Fifteen semi-finalists will be announced May 18. They will be awarded a complimentary one-year membership to the 2020 SEMA Show, as well as registration and airfare (up to $500) to attend the SEMA Show Exhibitor Summit in Las Vegas—a two-day conference held June 24–26, for exhibitors. The 15 Launch Pad participants will learn new business strategies and film a short video that will be used for an online voting competition.
The public will be able to view the 15 videos online and cast their votes for the business they would like to advance to the next round. From there, 10 finalists will receive a complimentary kiosk booth at the 2020 SEMA Show, with the top five vote-getters earning a chance to pitch their products during the SEMA Launch Pad Live event, November 2, at the SEMA Show.
The top five finalists will pitch their businesses to a panel of iconic industry judges, who will determine the winner of the top prize of $10,000, a turnkey exhibit space with premium placement at the 2020 SEMA Show, free promotional support and more.
Applicants do not need to be members of SEMA or YEN to participate, but must hold stake within the company. Students who meet the qualifications are invited to apply as well.
To apply or for more information, visit www.sema.org/launchpad before May 3.