MCLEAN, Virginia—Officials of She Has a Deal announced the five finalist teams of the Early Career track selected to advance to the final round of SHaDPitch 2023. The annual hotel investment pitch competition allows teams of early career women to compete for the prize of $50,000 of equity in SHaD’s Prosperity Fund I, following the conclusion of a virtual, preliminary round of pitching. The goal of She Has a Deal is to increase the number of women owning and developing hotels. The organization is an ecosystem that offers inspiration and education through its EdTech platform to channel the power of collaboration and mentorship. She Has a Deal creates new pathways to hotel ownership and development by exposing participants to the hard-to-find details needed to source, analyze, raise capital, and close hotel real estate investment deals.
During the preliminary judging round, eight teams comprised of 15 participants pitched hotel investment acquisition or development projects live on Zoom to a judging panel of top-level hotel business executives, entrepreneurs, and investors. The judges evaluated and selected the following five teams:
- SpartanStone (Sydney Young & Rachel Nicholson)—Michigan State University—Pitching a La Quinta Inn & Suites in Lewisville, Texas
- Chanders Core Commitment (Chandler Williamson)—Graduate of North Carolina Central University—Pitching a Hilton Garden Inn in Raleigh/Durham, North Carolina
- CROWN (Isabella Suffredini, Veronica Lewis, Alexandra Neoman)—Cornell University—Pitching a TownePlace Suites in Houston, Texas
- Hookipa Hospitality (Makenna Price)—Graduate of Washington State University—Pitching a Fairfield Inn & Suites in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
- AH Hospitality (Allison Busch & Hannah Takekawa)—San Diego State University—Pitching a Staybridge Suites in Austin, Texas
In addition to the Early Careerists, SHaDPitch also includes a competitive track for seasoned professionals called Today’s Woman which began in 2022. The Today’s Woman 2023 cohort will also be pitching their deals during the big event later this month.
The women in both tracks started their She Has a Deal journey in September 2022, completing more than 30 hours of intensive hotel investment education to learn how to source, evaluate, and raise capital for a real hotel deal. Throughout the education process, the teams search for viable hotel deals to pitch.
“Every year, I grow more encouraged that we are making an impact,” said Tracy Prigmore, She Has a Deal founder. “These are brilliant women who benefit from the education and programming that SHaD provides, and their hotel investment acumen has grown by leaps and bounds. I am tremendously grateful for our sponsorship partners who believe in our mission and are helping us build the pipeline of future hotel owners and developers.”
The final pitch competition will take place at the new Marriott Headquarters in Bethesda, Maryland, on April 27-28. The competition will be followed by an awards and networking luncheon at the Marriott Bethesda Downtown, where all the participants will be celebrated. This year’s Power in Numbers Panel at the luncheon will include a conversation with executive women leaders in finance from the hotel industry.