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Submitted by: Jeffery Lakes

Type of Business

Market and Business Development

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For photo entry, tell us how this Championship will help you realize a dream for your business. Limit 1,500 characters. Write "NA" if video entry., Inc. develops and markets gift cards to help small retailers fare better competitively against big-box and online retailers. Our mission is to provide products and solutions that improve the shopping experiences of the world’s consumers. As a result, consumers will reward us with leadership sales, profit, and value creation, allowing our stakeholders to prosper. We passionately pursue this mission to level the playing field for small retailers. Our one-card/multiple merchant products coupled with ‘The Best Way to Gift Cards’ mantra levels the playing field for small retailers who join The Ultimate Gift Card Network we operate.

Winning this championship expands my capacity for establishing this company without having to take on debt or equity investors, thereby enabling me to maintain the highest level of integrity for achieving the company’s vision, mission, and core values. Winning also advances my ability to establish gift cards as social media, forging a transformational community-building platform that gives its gift card network partners deeper reach into the marketplace. Even more, winning also enables me to add new members to the team to help the company become more proficient at executional and operational efficiency. Even more, winning will enable me to expand the cash back rewards program (coming soon) into the mobile space in ways that deepen our reach into the marketplace and enrich our user experiences.

What would you buy with a $1,000 Sam's Club gift card?

I would use the $1,000 Sam’s Club gift card toward upgrading my home and mobile office. To that, I would purchase one (1) Windows powered PC and monitor package; one (1) iPad Air tablet, and an iPhone 6. In the (highly likely) event that total price exceeds the $1,000 threshold, I would pay the difference because gift cards are great tools for helping users reduce their out-of-pocket costs for the items they really want.

How would you benefit from a year of SCORE mentoring and coaching?

One of my biggest challenges is balancing the B2B partnering that forms The Ultimate Gift Card Network with the B2C selling that fosters The Ultimate Gift Card Marketplace. Having interacted with SCORE mentors on numerous previous occasions, I am confident that one year of mentoring and coaching will help me organize balance B2B and B2C more adeptly. I expect mentoring to infuse fresh perspective, sound counsel, and accountability into the mix in a deeper sense than I have experienced since form

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