Last year, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued 288,335 new patents, reports the QVC shopping company. While all of these new ideas might have been great, not all of them made millions or became the next big household name. While many people have great ideas, not everyone has the drive, experience, or knowledge to know how to run a successful company based on a product idea.
Leading businesses and inventors are working to change that at Make48, a group of Kansas City, MO-based inventors. Companies like QVC and famous startups from Shark Tank—like Squatty Potty, Scrub Daddy, and The Paint Brush Cover—have joined with the Make48 founders for the ultimate series of 48-hour-long inventor competitions. These events yield product ideas that are supported through every step of the business building process until they are successfully brought to market.
Expanding Business Opportunities for Inventors
Make48 and QVC are extending business opportunities to inventors and entrepreneurs during the October Make48 competition in Kansas City, MO, with the addition of a QVC Sprouts live pitch event. Local inventors and entrepreneurs can now apply for a chance to pitch their product to QVC, whose programming is distributed to approximately 360 million homes worldwide. Based in West Chester, Pennsylvania and founded in 1986, QVC has evolved from a TV shopping company to a leading e-commerce and mobile commerce retailer.
Teams will be given a challenge, like creating a household product that solves water waste. Within 48 hours, they will have to create a working prototype, commercial, and sales pitch for the judges; basically, they’ll be building a business in 48 hours. The winners’ product will be manufactured and brought to store shelves, according to a press release. Teams have access to 3D printers and a budget for buying supplies to help construct a product that is impressive enough to win over QVC executives.
Entering QVC’s Sprouts Program
Inventors and entrepreneurs with retail-ready products who are interested in being considered for the live pitch can apply online to become a participant. Additionally, they will have a chance to be selected for the QVC Sprouts Program.
QVC Sprouts is an ongoing crowd-sourced competition in search of the best up-and-coming products, giving those inventors with retail-ready products the opportunity to sell them on air. Every two weeks, QVC asks fans to review competing products that have been submitted by inventors and entrepreneurs and then vote for the ones they would most like to see sold on QVC. Those receiving the most interest are offered the opportunity to be sold on QVC.com and the potential to sell on-air, during a live QVC broadcast.