A film and documentary distribution company has won the ACE Memorial/Cox and Palmer Innovation Challenge. Pedestrian Distribution, co-owned by performance and communications media students Mandy Montrose and Monica Walsh, triumphed over nine other student entrepreneurs vying to see their business ideas come to life. Their prize included $2,500 in capital and a coveted space in Launch Pad.
Styled after the CBC television show Dragon’s Den, the Innovation Challenge was judged by business professors, members of entrepreneurship organizations throughout the community and representatives from the Launch Pad and Innovation Challenge sponsors Cox and Palmer.
In a surprise move, the judges offered all five finalists with Launch Pad space for the entire year. “This event was a huge success and has great potential to grow in years to come,” said Jason Oakley, vice-president entrepreneurship and manager of Launch Pad. “Our sponsor, Cox and Palmer are committed to this project and they’ve agreed to make this an annual event, supporting Memorial’s student entrepreneurs for years to come.”
Pedestrian Distribution focuses particularly on first time and new Canadian filmmakers. Part of what excites these two entrepreneurs is the idea of film spreading relevant and thought-provoking messages. “We’ll be connecting filmmakers with like-minded thinkers who relate to the messages and ideas in their film,” co-owner Mandy Montrose explained. Her business partner, Monica Walsh, believes that Pedestrian Distribution can provide guidance to new filmmakers. “We can provide newcomers with the resources and advice they need to succeed.”
Launch Pad clients each receive office space and supplies, professional development seminars, access to market research, guidance and support from an advisory board, and mentorship from the award-winning ACE Memorial team. Launch Pad is available to students thanks to generous support from Memorial University’s President’s Office and ACOA.