Behind the Scenes at the Shopify Build A Business Winner’s Day in NYC


This past July we announced the winners of Shopify’s 4th Annual Build A Business Competition.

On August 7, Shopify headed to New York City to celebrate the 10 successful startups who came out on top. They flew in from all over the world – from Canon City, Colorado to Adelaide, Australia.

Those entrepreneurs won the competition by selling the most in their category over an eight-month period. The competition resulted in 21,000 entrepreneurs who created new businesses that sold more than $120 million in products.

This year’s winners earned $50,000 and the opportunity to seek business advice from our all-star mentors: Gary Vaynerchuk, Mark Cuban, Lil Jon, Arianna Huffington, Daymond John, Tim Ferriss, Chase Jarvis, Tina Roth Eisenberg, Selita Ebanks, and Amber Mac.

Each winner spent an hour with their category mentor, asking for input on their business plan, growth strategies and marketing goals.

“It was the most enlightening one hour of my life that I’ve had,” said Michael Cao, CEO of ZoomHash and the winner of Tim Ferriss’s Electronics & Gadgets category.

Take a behind-the-scenes look at what happened when this year’s winners met their mentors.

Now it’s time to plan Shopify’s 5th Annual Build A Business Competition – and next year’s prize will be beyond anything we’ve done before.

“This year’s Build A Business has been absolutely incredible, but next year’s?” said Shopify’s Chief Platform Officer Harley Finkelstein. “Just wait for next year’s.”

Until we announce our next competition, here’s a clue…

This month, we flew to NYC
For our Build A Business Competition.
But now we’re rewriting the rule book
To launch a whole new vision.
We’ll meet somewhere no one could walk
With a man of whom you’ve heard.
His coordinates are shared below –
But 'til Sept. 22, mum’s the word.

18.5272° N, 64.3581° W

Behind the Scenes at the Shopify Build A Business Winner’s Day in NYC


Think you’ve figured it out? Share your guesses about next year’s competition in the comments below.