The 2018 Big Pitch Competition presented by PNC is in its fifth year, and REV is excited for you to get to know each of our five 2018 finalists. Meet finalist Tiffany Martin of Ignite Cycle. She is passionate about building a community to help people become their best selves, one pedal stroke at a time, at Birmingham’s only boutique cycling studio.
Each Big Pitch finalist is paired with a mentor to help them prepare for the competition. Tiffany’s mentor is fellow cycling enthusiast Abra Barnes, who owns Birmingham-based Barnes & Associates, Realtors. Abra’s “community first” guiding principle and deep experience in community building make her a perfect guide for Tiffany.
Ahead of the November 17 live competition, we asked Tiffany a few questions about Ignite Cycle and how she envisions her business adding to the vibrancy of Birmingham.
REV: Give us your elevator pitch about your business.
Tiffany Martin: Birmingham is the largest city in the country without a boutique cycle studio. We’re the source connecting you to others, to your ride, and to your highest self. You’ll change more than just your body – every drop of sweat is a spark that ignites the fire that will transform your life. We move together, one pedal stroke at a time – lights down, music up.
REV: When did you start your business and why?
TM: Ignite has been in motion since I found out I was moving to Birmingham in June 2017. After years of working in the fitness industry in other cities and pursuing my passion for rhythm riding in Boston, I began looking for a place to instruct in Birmingham – with no luck. It didn’t take long for me to realize I wasn’t the only one aware of the void. After learning more about the Birmingham market, it became clear that others in the community were just as desperate for a boutique cycle studio as I was. Surrounded by empty moving boxes in Boston, the “how to write a business plan” googling began.
REV: Why does Birmingham need you?
TM: Riding at Ignite is not your typical workout. Yes, you can expect to sweat and challenge yourself, but the experience goes far beyond that. There’s something about that dark room and the loud music that is magical. There’s an element of mindfulness. There’s a palpable connection with your fellow riders. It’s transformative. It connects you to the best parts of yourself. And when we are connected to our highest selves, we become more empowered, more joyful, and more vibrant. Our riders will carry that with them into their lives.
REV: What do you want Birmingham to know about the person behind the business?
TM: We are a mission-driven business, and our mission was crafted based on how I have aimed to live my life. Connecting people with like-minded friends, encouraging others to discover the best parts of themselves, and getting a good sweat have been themes throughout my own life. I am grateful to have a space to do this on a larger scale as I bring like-minded, uniquely-gifted people onto our team.
In its five years, The Big Pitch presented by PNC has grown to become an exciting showcase of Birmingham’s up-and-coming small business owners. REV Birmingham launched this event to offer an impactful opportunity for entrepreneurs to gain the resources needed to achieve their big dreams for their small businesses.
The 2018 finalists include Beehive Baking Company, Gatos and Beans, Ignite Cycle, Mota Autohaus, and Nelchie’s Cajun Cuisine. They will compete and pitch their ideas in front of judges and a live audience on Saturday, November 17 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Studio Arts Building in Five Points South, 1034 20th Street South. Buy your Big Pitch tickets now!
See more details on The Big Pitch, including information about business development workshops from October 16-30, at bigpitchbham.com.
Follow @revbham on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to see updates on #REVBigPitch and more of REV’s vibrancy-driving work in Birmingham.
When Karen Gathany began her search for a brick-and-mortar space, she wasn’t quite sure where she’d end up. But she fell in love with a charming historic storefront, complete with hardwood floors and an exposed brick wall, on 1st Avenue North in Woodlawn.
To say that Domestique Coffee’s Michael Pocus knows a thing or two about a good cup of coffee is an understatement.
As one of the original vendors of the Woodlawn Street Market, Nelesha Dale has a big heart for community, family, and entrepreneurs. REV met with her to find out what’s next for her business and how she got to where she is today.