MIAMI, FL – April 13, 2016 – (HISPANICIZE WIRE) – At Hispanicize 2016, the national Latino influencers and trendsetters event in Miami, In Spirit was announced the winner of “The Latino Perfect Pitch” small business competition sponsored by Wells Fargo. As the grand prize winner, In Spirit will receive $5,000 to help build and grow its business. In addition, In Spirit will receive a trip to the Silicon Valley sponsored by the Latino Business Action Network (LBAN), a non-profit organization that collaborates with Stanford University on Latino entrepreneurship research and education programs, to meet with angel investors and network at LBAN’s Entrepreneurship Center in Palo Alto.

“Being chosen by the small business expert judges is a great honor. Our goal at In Spirit is to grow our business and customer base. The funds and exposure gained from the competition will certainly take us to next level,” said Lawrence Cisneros, Co-Founder and CEO of In Spirit and winner of this year’s “The Latino Perfect Pitch” competition.

“The Latino Perfect Pitch” is a small business competition for entrepreneurs, digital influencers and bloggers seeking an opportunity to take their business to the next level. The competition was open to entrepreneurs who have been in business no more than five years and three finalists were selected to pitch their business to a panel of expert judges for a grand prize at Hispanicize 2016.

“As we hoped, this competition served as an unprecedented opportunity for content creators, technologists and journalists attending Hispanicize to raise capital to take their innovative business to the next level. We sincerely thank our partner, Wells Fargo, for leading the initiative,” said Hispanicize CEO Manny Ruiz

The three finalists who participated in the live competition, included:

— In Spirit:
In Spirit brings the high-end cocktail experience to everyone by infusing cold-pressed juices and spirits, along with bitters, liquors, and raw sugars, to create innovative, mixology-based concoctions – for the first time in the industry.

— IX Style:
IX is the Mayan word for water. For every purchase of huarache sandals, IX Style donates to provide clean drinking water to children in Guatemala, where the owner’s family is from. IX Style’s products are made in Guatemala and create jobs for local artisans near the lake that inspired Francesca to start IX Style.

— Juana La Iguana: Juana la Iguana is a learning and entertainment platform that instills educational and global values to pre-school children in Spanish. There is a clear need in the U.S. Hispanic market and in the Spanish speaking market in Latin America for high-quality content that is fun, engaging, innovative and culturally relevant for children 1-5 years old. Latin parents want to transmit their values and their culture to their children in a mobile and global world.

“I’m inspired by the passion of the diverse group of talented entrepreneurs from across the country who submitted their business plans for this tremendous opportunity,” said Xochitl Leon, Hispanic segment marketing manager for Wells Fargo. “We are committed to helping Latino businesses grow and provide them with tools and resources, including WellsFargoWorks.com, to enable them to succeed and be agents of economic change in the communities we serve.”

Hispanicize is the iconic, largest annual event for Latino trendsetters and newsmakers in digital content creation, journalism, marketing, entertainment and tech entrepreneurship. This year’s conference took place in downtown Miami’s InterContinental hotel, April 4-8, 2016. (See the Hispanicize 2016 preview video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ys3_h5m8V6s).

2016 Sponsors

In addition to Wells Fargo, as of today sponsors also include: Amazon, Cricket Wireless, Google, Best Western, Unilever, Carnival Corporation, Facebook, Toyota, Que Rica Vida, Coca-Cola, Verizon Wireless, General Mills, Kimberly-Clark Corporation, Home Depot, Monster Products, Walt Disney Pictures, ViveMejor, Wells Fargo, State Farm, JetBlue Airways, KOA, Hennessy VSOP, Stitch Fix, Riboli Family Wine Estates, Nestle’s La Lechera, Dominican Republic Tourism, MSNBC, NBC News, NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises, Comcast, Savings.com, Comcast, JCPenney, Microsoft, Pinterest, USA Network, The Miami Herald Media Company, CNN en Español, Discovery U.S. Hispanic Networks, Diario Las Americas, Fox News Latino, Kelley Blue Book, Visit Philly, Burson Latino, StudioB, Alma, República, Synergy Workspaces, Miami Dade College’s School of Entertainment & Design Technology, Sensis, BTL Network, IZEA, Paco Collective, BodenPR, Newlink Americas, Pinta, American Heart Association, the Calvert Foundation, Juan La Iguana, Raydr, the Jackson Health Foundation, the Art Experience and Bright Box.

Additional media partners include: The Latino Startup Alliance, BlackTech Week, Voto Latino, Geoscape, Hispanicize Wire, PRODU, El Sentinel, Puerto Rico BloggerCon, Hispanic PR Blog, the Hispanic Public Relations Association, Black Enterprise, Media Moves, iBlog Magazine, SAG-AFTRA, Digital Trends en Español, Social Media Week Miami, HipLatina.com and Creative Juice Online.

About Hispanicize 2016
Now in its seventh year, Hispanicize 2016 Week (www.HispanicizeEvent.com) (#Hispz16) is the iconic, largest annual event for Latino trendsetters and newsmakers in digital content creation, journalism, marketing, entertainment and tech entrepreneurship.

Hispanicize 2016 is expected to gather more than 3,000 of the nation’s most influential Latino professionals from the industries of digital content creation, journalism, music, marketing, film and business over five days. The event will take place in downtown Miami’s InterContinental hotel, April 4-8, 2016.

The Hispanicize event is a launch pad for creative endeavors, new products, technologies, marketing campaigns, films, books and more targeting Latinos in the U.S. and/or Puerto Rico.

The Hispanicize event can be found on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/Hispanicize, Instagram (@HispanicizeEvent), Twitter and Periscope (@Hispanicize)

About Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.8 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through 8,700 locations, 13,000 ATMs, the internet (wellsfargo.com) and mobile banking, and has offices in 36 countries to support customers who conduct business in the global economy. With approximately 265,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 30 on Fortune’s 2015 rankings of America’s largest corporations. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially. Wells Fargo perspectives are also available at Wells Fargo Blogs and Wells Fargo Stories.