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Economy

Starwood Malls Host Battle of the Pop-Up Contests for Entrepreneurs

southpark mall in canton
SouthPark Mall
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SouthPark Mall
SouthPark Mall in Canton

Local startups and small businesses are getting a chance to win rent-free space in Northeast Ohio malls.

Malls managed by Starwood Retail Partners are hosting the Battle of the Pop-Up contest. The winners will get four months of rent-free space and a merchandising package that includes signs and graphic-design services.

Ed Jaroszewicz, the marketing director at the SouthPark Mall in Strongsville, says the competition is an opportunity for malls to attract unique businesses from the area’s startup community.  

“We want to give the community a voice to tell us, ‘Hey, this is something that the community might be interested in’ that we would not have previously thought of," says Jaroszewicz. "So it’s giving the community kind of a voice to say, ‘Here are ideas out there. You might not be thinking of them, but they’re viable business ideas in Northeast Ohio.'"

Jaroszewicz says contest winners could be welcomed as regular mall tenants if they are successful in their first four months.

Belden Village in Canton and Great Northern Mall in North Olmsted are also hosting competitions. Applications are due March 1.