Four months and two rounds later, The Chupitos Bar, an idea for a concept bar by Jamie Koh and Cherilyn Tan, has beaten over 200 other entries and nine other finalists to win Martell VSOP’s The Ultimate “The Ultimate Start-up Space” challenge. Both in their twenties, the firm friends won a grand prize that included the start-up space in Clarke Quay, one of Singapore’s most vibrant entertainment districts, rent-free for a period of six months and a funding of S$20,000 to live out their dream.
“The overwhelming number of business submissions proved to us that entrepreneurship is very much alive in Singapore,” said Liya Zhang, marketing director of Pernod Ricard Singapore, which oversees the Martell VSOP brand here. She added that the overwhelming response proved that there are many business ideas in Singapore that are in need of financial and mentoring support.
So What Now?
Now with S20,000 in their pocket and a 3-meter by 10-meter space in a prime location, the question for The Chupitos Bar is: what next? Many startups make the critical mistake of making the winning of a business plan competition or entrepreneurship challenge the end-all and be-all of their plans, and fail to keep a mid- to long-term view of their business. After all, S$20,000 doesn’t go very far in the F&B industry.
For Jamie and Cherilyn, the journey has only just begun.
For the rest of the entries, losing may not be a bad thing either.