Hundreds of California dreamers have already entered the state’s first-ever business plan competition including categories for young entrepreneurs, which is open for entries through May 1, 2013. New webinars have been announced to assist entrants in completing their entry.

Sacramento, CA (PRWEB) February 28, 2013

The first-ever California statewide business plan competition is in full swing with hundreds of Californians hoping to win funds to help them launch or grow their startup. The competition is encouraging Californians of all ages, including teens and young adults between the ages of 14 and 27, to write a business plan and compete to win a combined cash prize of $15,000 and $30,000 worth of in-kind prizes. The Business & Entrepreneurship Center (BEC) Program in California has partnered with the world’s leader in business planning software, Palo Alto Software, to host the statewide event branded as the “BEC Boost.”

On Wednesday, March 6, a free “Introduction to Business Plan Writing” webinar will be held for the 14 to 17 year old age group at 4:30pm (PT). Those interested (including teachers, parents, advisers and entrepreneurs) may register here for this webinar.

On Wednesday, April 10, a free “Top 10 Reasons Startups Fail” webinar will be held at 12:00pm (PT). Those interested may register here for this webinar.

Mike Roessler, the statewide director for the BEC, stated, “Statistics show that it is the entrepreneurs and small business owners who fuel our economy, so we wanted to start even further downstream by encouraging and mentoring our young people to gain the skills and knowledge to start their own business.”

The partnership with Palo Alto Software includes access to LivePlan – Palo Alto Software’s online business planning and management software. Palo Alto Software will also facilitate the screening of the business plans, and the judging process. The judges for the competition include Tim Berry, founder and board chairmen of Palo Alto Software; Barbara Vohryzek, the Deputy Director for Small Business and the Small Business Advocate at the California Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development; R Paul Singh, the founder and CEO of DocSync.net, as well as an angel investor with The Indus Entrepreneurs; and Jeff Draa, a former board member of Tech Coast Angels, and regular judge for several venture pitch competitions in the U.S.

Through its Youth Entrepreneurship Program (YEP), the BEC endeavors to strengthen California by encouraging young people to engage in their own entrepreneurial enterprises. YEP brings business ownership concepts to young people ages 14 to 27 with the intention of replacing misconceptions of vocational education and blue-collar jobs with increased awareness of, and aspirations for, self-employment as a legitimate lifetime career path.

“We are thrilled to see hundreds of Californians have already entered the BEC Boost and can’t wait to see how many more complete their entries before the May 1 deadline,” said Palo Alto Software CEO, Sabrina Parsons. “Working with Mike Roessler and his programs in California is an exciting way to be involved in entrepreneurial education in California and a great way to continue to support the American dream. Targeting young people, and infusing entrepreneurial skills in the classroom will result in smarter, more empowered students who can either start their own businesses, or join existing businesses with the knowledge-base of what it means to start, run and grow a business.”

The BEC Boost business plan competition has three categories for competitors: 14 to 17 years old, 18 to 27 years old, and those 28 and older (all must be legal California residents). Each group is eligible to win $5,000, plus $10,000 worth of in-kind prizes to help boost their business. For more information about the California BEC Boost competition, visit bec.liveplan.com

Track and generate buzz about the BEC Boost by following @BECProgram and @LivePlan

About the Business Entrepreneurship Centers 
The Business and Entrepreneurship Centers (BEC) support the natural cycles of entrepreneurship and business development in California by bringing entrepreneurial training and education to existing business owners and future entrepreneurs. Through partnerships, collaborations and relationships with businesses, industry and the 112 California Community Colleges, the BEC heightens awareness of entrepreneurship as a proven career path. BEC is an initiative of Economic and Workforce Development through the California Community Colleges system. For more information about the BEC, visit BuildCalifornia.org.

About Palo Alto Software, Inc. 
Palo Alto Software, Inc., makers of the #1 selling business planning software in the world, develops and publishes tools, products, and content to help small and midsized businesses plan, pitch and manage their venture. LivePlan, the company’s flagship product, is a SaaS (software as a service) solution for business planning and management. Palo Alto Software has been the market leader in its category for over fifteen years, has served well over 1 million entrepreneurs, and has customers in 180 countries. Founded in 1988 by business planning expert Tim Berry, the company is a privately-owned corporation based in Eugene, Oregon. For more information about Palo Alto Software, visit http://www.paloalto.com

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