Female entrepreneurs are being given a unique chance to pitch their business ideas to an audience this September at the California Women’s Conference.

For the first time in its 27-year history, the California Women’s Conference will have an interactive session, “Dolphin Tank,” focused on five motivated entrepreneurs. Applications are being accepted now for those interested in competing for one of five “Dolphin Tank” slots.

Inspired by ABC’s “Shark Tank,” which is a television show where contestant entrepreneurs pitch their business ideas to potential investors, the “Dolphin Tank” will be a friendly opportunity for five businesswomen to share their ideas and receive feedback from professionals and the audience at large. Each presenter will have two minutes to pitch their idea and ask a specific question or describe a challenge they face.

Executives from Springboard Enterprises, which has hosted other “Dolphin Tank” events at other conferences, will select the five participants and help the entrepreneurs get tangible, actionable input on how to improve their pitch in order to attract investors, partners, colleagues or customer interest. The entrepreneurs chosen to present also will have access to professional resources and will receive a special goodie bag.

“Whether applicants are creating an app that helps people find new friends; a website that assists parents in finding the right camp for their children; or a novel approach to reducing stress, it’s all exciting to us,” said Denise Brosseau, co-founder and member of the National Council of Advisors of venture catalyst Springboard Enterprises. “We are looking for passionate people with compelling stories who have a purpose behind their ideas. They have to convince us that they are the right person and have the savvy and connections and expertise that gives them that secret sauce they need to move forward.”

Brosseau, who is an entrepreneur herself and has been a guest speaker at a previous Women’s Conference, said she is looking forward to hearing the entrepreneurs’ business pitches. She said she hopes the event helps the participants succeed and also inspire audience members to pursue their own dreams.

“I love to work with women leaders,” Brosseau said. “I believe that every door should be open to women, and I found out in the corporate world that those doors aren’t always open… Cultures are not always supportive, but we, as women, can be better prepared for it and get out of our own way and learn how others have done it and find support. This event is about getting people engaged and networking and building support.”

Priority will be given to submissions made by July 31. The final deadline for submissions is Aug. 31. The “Dolphin Tank” presentations will take place during the California Women’s Conference on Sept. 24 at the Long Beach Convention Center.

“We’re thrilled to help bring to life the dreams of entrepreneurs willing to share their ideas, products and concepts with us in the Dolphin Tank,” Michelle J. Patterson, CEO of EventComplete, said in a release. EventComplete is organizing the California Women’s Conference this year. “We ‘swim’ alongside these women and look forward to helping them develop concise, compelling messages and bring their innovative ideas into reality with guidance from our experts.”

Only conference attendees can apply. To purchase tickets and apply for the “Dolphin Tank,” visit www.CaliforniaWomensConference.com.

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