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Local Clothing Designer Wins Minnesota SBA InnovateHER Competition

If Chosen Finalist, Will Go to D.C. to Compete Nationally
Release Date: 
Wednesday, June 28, 2017
Release Number: 
17.18.MN
Contact: 
Sarah Swenty, sarah.swenty@sba.gov

MINNEAPOLISMolly Fuller Design is the Minnesota winner of the 2017 InnovateHer competition.  Healthcare.mn hosted the local competition in Minneapolis on behalf of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) this year.

The InnovateHER competition provides an opportunity for entrepreneurs throughout the U.S. to showcase products and services that have a measurable impact on the lives of women and families (30%), have the potential for commercialization (40%), and fill a need in the marketplace (30%). Each host submits one local winner to the SBA, who then identifies ten finalists. These finalists will be invited to travel to the Washington D.C. metro area for a live pitch competition and a chance to win up to $70,000 in prize money.

“InnovateHER is one exciting way the SBA is helping small businesses start, grow and succeed,” explained Nancy Libersky, SBA’s Minnesota district director. “It’s always great to see our local entrepreneurs highlighted nationally and I hope to see the company chosen to compete nationally.”

Molly Fuller Design is working to break through the barrier that clothing for a condition looks and feels "medical". Everyone deserves style and quality, which is why Molly Fuller Design is creating a new clothing brand of affordable, functional, and fashionable options for individuals with health conditions that require specially designed clothing.

“Having a medical condition does not mean a person stops caring about style and quality, and we shouldn’t treat them as such,” explains Molly Fuller, owner and designer for the company. "I’m thrilled to have been chosen locally. Winning InnovateHer nationally would give me the funding I need to manufacture and launch my first line of clothing"

Molly is currently testing prototypes for the first line of clothing, compression garments for teens with autism spectrum disorder.

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InnovateHER is a nationwide prize competition held by SBA, in partnership with Microsoft, to find the most innovative products and services that help impact and empower women’s lives. National Finalists have the opportunity to present a live pitch to a panel of expert judges and compete for up to $70,000 in cash prizes.

The Small Business Administration was created in 1953 as an independent agency of the federal government to aid, counsel, assist and protect the interests of small business concerns, to preserve free competitive enterprise and to maintain and strengthen the overall economy of our nation.  The Minnesota District Office provides SBA programs and services to the state of Minnesota. Working with our resource partners across the state, we help businesses start, grow and achieve success. Visit www.sba.gov/mn to learn more.