New Season Wellness wins fall 2020 Early Risers Academy cohort pitch

Thursday night, Anikka Masey, founder of New Season Wellness, won her Early Risers Academy cohort’s virtual pitch night, taking home $1K.

New Season Wellness is an alternative online health store providing convenience, ease and affordability of a one stop shop for all things CBD.

“My prayers were answered when I was accepted to be a part of the Early Risers Academy cohort. I had a business idea and wanted some guidance on creating a stable foundation first before jumping in with both feet,” Anikka said. “Going back to school wasn’t an option, so finding a free 10-week business class was right on time.”

Early Risers Academy was fast-paced, but well worth it, she continued.

“It takes you step by step through the process of structuring your business, it makes you niche down your idea to find out who your target customer is, it sparked a conversation with my spouse and I about our commitment level regarding what kind of financial sacrifices we were willing to make, and it brings to the forefront who should be on your team, as well as how to manage all the moving parts of your operation,” she said.

The fall 2020 cohort was the first all-women, all-minority cohort.

“Ladies, you all did amazing,” Anikka said after the pitch wrapped. “I’m so proud to know you and so glad to have new group of sisters to add to my circle.”

Early Risers Academy is a free, 10-week, pre-accelerator program designed to take participants from business idea to business launch. It is run by a team from Launch Dayton partner Parallax Advanced Research.

Participants complete Kauffman FastTrac coursework from the nationally-renowned Kauffman Foundation, receive pitch coaching and hands-on mentoring, weekly discussions with successful entrepreneurs and experts, & access to Dayton’s entrepreneurial ecosystem.

These workshops can also be valuable for founders early in their small business journey, or who jumped right into their business without formally developing the plans behind it and are now discovering they need some of that paperwork in place to grow.

Other summer cohort graduates included:

• Rachel Blanks, founder of Simply Savory by Rachel, a premier line of complete seasoning blends designed to separate a boring dish from a memorable one;

• Rachel Roebuck-Howard, founder of Live Arts Transformation, offering events from stage plays to concerts, children’s competitions to mental health workshops, all dedicated to bringing a ray of hope to those who need it.

• Sierra Leone, founder of Acacia Health and Wellness, an energy clearing and cleaning sage spray and hand-blended essentials oils businessintended to support holistic health, healing, and wellness through the use of our specially formulated and curated sprays and oils.

• Courtney Wilbur, founder of Just Cakin It Mobile Cakery + Dessert Lab, providing custom gourmet treats with a twist of chemistry to create a fun experience at the convenience of your front door.

“Early Risers Academy is designed for aspiring founders in any industry,” Project Manager KeAnna Daniels said. “We’re particularly excited to work with more women and minority founders.”

Applications are open for our 2021 cohorts — we’ll run three general cohorts and one tech cohort beginning in February. Learn more & apply for Early Risers Academy here!

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Dani Ruffalo is the founder of Handy Hats. Handy Hats is donating ALDI giftcards for Christmas this year.