Second annual grants program nearly doubled applicant pool across dozens of industries; winners receive US $10,000 grants and US $5,000 in Alibaba.com logistics resources to support growth of entrepreneur economy
Company also announces “Bonus Round” to select grand prize winner
NEW YORK, Jan. 10, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Alibaba.com, one of the world’s largest B2B e-commerce marketplaces and a business unit of Alibaba Group (NYSE: BABA), announced today the 50 recipients of its second annual Manifest Grants Program. The winners, representing a broad range of industries, regions and cultures across the United States, will each receive US $10,000 along with a host of resources from Alibaba.com and Manifest Grants Program partners to help them continue to innovate and build their businesses in this competitive market.
This year’s program attracted nearly double the number of applicants compare with last year, with 23,000 American small business owners presenting their new product ideas and go-to-market strategies for consideration. Of those applying, 70% were women entrepreneurs, and approximately 90% identified as Black, Indigenous or people of color (BIPOC). The top reasons for application included building their brand (35%), hiring new staff (13%), and raising capital (10%).
Those selected showed unique approaches to improving the competitive edge of their products, developing new product concepts, showing a commitment to sustainability and emphasizing diversity. Among the final 50 winners, 8% have achieved gross revenue of over one million dollars last year, 28% over $10k; Up to 90% of these entrepreneurs’ mentioned sustainability in their entrepreneurial journey; 38% have patents or patent-pending innovation.
“We are honored that thousands of talented, small business owners shared their stories with us, and we are truly inspired by the drive for innovation, efficiency, resilience, and sustainability of the final 50 winners,” said Stephen Kuo, President of Alibaba.com North America. “We look forward to supporting them in their journeys to manifest new product ideas and ultimately continue to grow their businesses. We see SMBs as the backbone and the future of an economy. Alibaba.com can support them with direct access to winning products, experienced manufacturers as well as digital sourcing tools to drive down sourcing costs and stay competitive.”
Following the close of the application period in late October, applications were evaluated by Alibaba.com’s panel of expert judges from across the e-commerce ecosystem. Each judge, listed below, brought their unique perspective to the application review process.
- Stephen Kuo, President, North America, Alibaba.com
- Elizabeth Gore, President, Hello Alice
- Becky Center, Chief Executive Officer, Indiegogo
- Robert Clarkson, Chief Revenue Officer, Payoneer
- Kian Golzari, Product Sourcing Expert
- Daymond John (Executive Program Mentor), Founder, FUBU
Created in partnership with Hello Alice, the Alibaba.com Manifest Grants Program reinforces the company’s commitment to supporting American SMBs as they continue to face increasing challenges in an uncertain economic environment. For the 2022 Manifest Grants Program, Alibaba.com has pledged to distribute US $750,000 to 50 American small businesses, each of which will receive US $10,000 in cash and US $5,000 towards logistics support when sourcing on Alibaba.com. The company also teamed up with Daymond John’s Black Entrepreneurs Day, Indiegogo, Payoneer (NASDAQ:PAYO), and AMZScout to expand its offering for applicants and recipients. The full list of winners is below:
- A Warner Idea LLC (Hazel Crest, IL)
- Access Trax (La Mesa, CA)
- ART DELECTABLES ORGANIC LUXURY DESSERT CO., LLC (Los Angeles, CA)
- AWA (Redwood City, CA)
- Babin Enterprises, LLC (Merrimack, NH)
- Bare Reverie (Miramar, FL)
- Belle Fleur (New York, NY)
- Benson Watch Company, LLC (Benson by Marcel) (Clinton, MD)
- Brilliantly (Cranston, RI)
- CABELLE LLC (Bronx, NY)
- California Heat – Heated Clothing (Street, MD)
- Campo Designs (Edmonds, WA)
- Clevtech (Houston, TX)
- ColorFlow Skating (San Francisco, CA)
- Con Todo Press (Los Angeles, CA)
- Crafty Cloth Inc (Baldwin, NY)
- Cubtale (Marina Del Rey, CA)
- Cultured Diapers (Warren, MI)
- Dez housewares (St. Augustine, FL)
- DupeDuo (Grayson, GA)
- Enrico Cuini (Beverly Hills, CA)
- FIT 2 CHEER, LLC w/PoundPoms (Round Rock, TX)
- Flat Out of Heels (Miami Beach, FL)
- Gem Surprise Box (Christini Collection LLC) (Fallbrook, CA)
- GOVERRE (San Marcos, CA)
- Kahlmi (Stamford, CA)
- KÄMA (Reno, NV)
- LLULO (Missouri City, TX)
- LOKA.HAUS (Austin, TX)
- Lukafit Activewear (New York, NY)
- MamaP (New York, NY)
- Mighty Tidy (Austin, TX)
- MUVEZ (Jersey City, NJ)
- Nerdbugs (Madison, WI)
- OLITA (San Rafael, CA)
- PinkThink (Sliver Spring, MD)
- PiperWai LLC (Brooklyn, NY)
- PRIXEL (Philmont, NY)
- ReVert Technologies, Inc. (New York, NY)
- Ron Williams Fitness, LLC (Midvale, UT)
- ShampooTime (Dallas, TX)
- SoaPen Inc (Brooklyn, NY)
- Sugar Bliss LLC (Chicago, IL)
- The Cool Cast Company (Marietta, GA)
- The Deluxe Pup (Scottsdale, AZ)
- The SaniDuster LLC (Inglewood, CA)
- Uncle Ray’s Peanut Brittle (Kingwood, TX)
- UnModern Industries (Santa Fe Springs, CA)
- WAGGIN (Astoria, NY)
- WordMart Inc (Arlington Heights, IL)
Bonus Round provides additional opportunity for grants recipients
New to the Manifest Grants Program this year is the “Bonus Round,” during which a select number of recipients will develop their new products with Alibaba.com suppliers for the opportunity to win additional support. Selected recipients will have the chance to develop and pitch their products over the course of 30 days to a panel of judges made up of industry leaders, influencers and ecommerce coaches.
The panel will select one grand prize winner who will receive another $10,000 grant, a one-on-one coaching session with Manifest Grants Program Executive Mentor Daymond John and an exclusive showcase at Alibaba.com’s next global event.
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The first business unit of Alibaba Group, Alibaba.com, is the leading B2B e-commerce platform for global B2B trading. We provide one-stop B2B trading solutions that cover the entire value chain of cross-border trade, including sourcing, payments, logistics, and fulfillment. With more than 200,000 suppliers of different types, including manufacturers and exporters worldwide, Alibaba.com hosts over 200 million products to more than 40 million active global business buyers in over 40 categories.
In today’s complex and ever-changing business environment, Alibaba.com strives to empower global small to mid-sized enterprises to achieve digital transformation and seize global business opportunities.