McKINNEY (April 11, 2016) — Do you have a great new product or service that you want to build a business around? Do you have a new business that is innovative in meeting customer needs? The Innovate McKinney Competition wants to hear about you!

Sponsored by First United Bank and Encore Wire Corporation, the Innovate McKinney Competition seeks to link McKinney small business people with the resources available in the community to support them. The WERX Foundation, Inc. and the McKinney Chamber of Commerce have developed a website,, with resources for small businesses and have planned events during the competition. Everyone who applies will benefit from the competition process, the resources available and the planned events. The Grand Prize winner will take home $3,500 cash. Second and Third Prize winners will take home a combination of cash and in-kind services.

“First United Bank believes strongly in supporting entrepreneurs in McKinney and the mission of McKinney WERX and the McKinney Chamber of Commerce,” said Alan McDonald, Senior Vice President of First United Bank. “Entrepreneurs are critical to the success of our community as they bring innovative ideas and products to market and create jobs that provide for a strong and stable community and region. When we inspire and empower entrepreneurs to succeed, the entire community benefits.”

Entrepreneurs and small business owners may apply for the competition starting Monday, April 11 through Saturday, May 14 at Applications will be reviewed and judged and five finalists will be announced Friday, June 3. The five finalists will present at an Innovate McKinney Grand Finale at The Historic McKinney Cotton Mill on Tuesday, June 28. The Finale will include a Small Business Expo with music, beer and wine and appetizers. Judges will attend the finalists’ presentations and select the top three winners which will be announced that evening.


Innovate McKinney Competition

“The mission of The WERX Foundation is to build, grow and support small business in McKinney and we feel that this competition is right in line with that mission,” said Christine Smith, The WERX Executive Director. “We hope that the competition shines a light on the great support and eco-system that McKinney provides for small businesses.”

April 11-15, 2016 has been proclaimed Innovate McKinney Week by McKinney’s Mayor Brian Loughmiller. To celebrate the launch of the Innovate McKinney Competition and Innovate McKinney Week, The WERX and the McKinney Chamber of Commerce are offering special activities during Innovate McKinney Week. Activities include:

  • A FREE week of open desk co-working space at The WERX. Entrepreneurs may utilize The WERX for a week to learn more about the benefits of working in a collaborative workspace and the resources available for small businesses at The WERX.
  • FREE Mentor WERXshops during lunch on April 12, 14 and 15 and free scheduled mentoring sessions. Lunch will be provided. Learn more about the WERXshop topics and sign-up for mentoring sessions at:
  • Innovate McKinney Week Wrap-Up Party at TUPPs Brewery on Friday, April 15 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. The WERX will buy the first 30 people who come with a promotional ‘free drink’ pass (obtained from WERX during the week) a free beer. Come on out and enjoy live music from "The Presumptions" with Bill Jackson from our very own successful local startup Bossfight Entertainment on bass. You're sure to meet some interesting people at this party!

“The McKinney Chamber of Commerce is excited to be partnering with The WERX on the Innovate McKinney Competition,” said Lisa Hermes, President of the McKinney Chamber of Commerce. “Our wonderful business environment in McKinney has delivered very successful startups in the past and we look forward to recognizing the startups of the future.”


About The Werx Foundation, Inc.

Located in the Historic Cotton Mill of McKinney, The WERX is a community center for Start-ups and Entrepreneurs that offers shared workspace and resources. Focused primarily around emerging technology companies, The WERX is partnered with the McKinney Economic Development Corporation, and aims to build grow and support small business in McKinney. The WERX Foundation, Inc. has also been established to allow for our corporate and community partners to contribute donations to help grow and build the entrepreneurial community for years to come. Thank you to all that have given back to your community! For more information, visit

About the McKinney Chamber of Commerce

The McKinney Chamber of Commerce is an advocate for the McKinney business community and proudly serves as the unified business voice of McKinney. The Chamber, which celebrated its Centennial in 2014, represents over 40,000 employees from more than 1,200 business investors in McKinney and throughout the North Texas region. With a rich heritage of leadership and collaboration, the Chamber works in concert with the City of McKinney, community partners and the corporate community to promote, advocate for and expand business. Through, and associated social media pages and feeds, the McKinney Chamber markets the community’s advantages as the foremost location for doing business and to keep a growing community connected. You can find the McKinney Chamber of Commerce on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr.