Naturally Boulder’s Autumn Awards welcomed the new and honored the old. The Pitch Slam series offered natural products entrepreneurs the opportunity to present their businesses for the chance to win a Grand Prize package. The Autumn Awards recognized the leaders of the industry through awards such as Most Innovative and Company of the Year.
The Pitch Slam series hosted 23 entrepreneurs who presented business ideas, concepts, and products — all of the natural and often organic variety. I was impressed by the enthusiasm, organization, and creativity brought to the table. Time restrictions and natural products vets like Justin Gold, of Justin’s Nut Butters, judging the presentations gave the whole event a sense of high esteem.
Cocktails and dinner for the awards reception followed the Pitch Slam Preliminaries. The Boulder Theater always cultivates an energetic vibe and entrepreneurs and natural products folks mingled with ease. Food provided by Big Bang Catering was excellent, showing flavors from Italian to Cajun to Mexican dishes. The long dinner tables invited members to sit with and to get to know someone new.
The highlight of the event was watching the awards given to excellent and deserving companies. The first award presented was to the winner of this year’s Pitch Slam. After a final presentation by the top 3 finalists, the $45,000 prize package went to Dressed Up Dressing, a fruit and vegetable based salad dressing company that gave a compelling argument for their natural product and easily swayed the judges.
Honored with the coveted Company of the Year award was Door to Door Organics, a Colorado based company that delivers fresh organic produce, dairy, and the best selection of natural groceries right to customer’s door steps. CEO Chad Arnold humbly accepted on behalf of the company. In August Door to Door received a $2 million Series A round investment from Boulder-based Greenmont Capital, which Chad noted will fuel their focus for the future. Emphasis will be put on improving the overall customer experience, rather than on expansion. Door to Door Organics is a leader in this industry, and sets a great example for members of Naturally Boulder through their commitment to better business practices. Congratulations to this outstanding company are certainly in order.
The night was a victory for Boulder’s entire natural products industry in celebration of outstanding companies and through the uniting of all attending as partners and resources, rather than strangers and competitors.