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West Orange Owner of Hand-Made Body Care Company Lands Partnership with Whole Foods

Second place Start Something Challenge winner Nicole Silva uses $7,500 grand prize to update labels and increase sales

June 10, 2014 — Nicole Silva, second place winner of Rising Tide Capital’s 2013 Start Something Challenge, recently landed a contract to sell her hand-made body products in four WholeFood store locations in New Jersey. Her company DollyMoo creates and sells hand-blended oils and scrubs, created with natural, organic ingredients.


Second Place Winner Nicole Silva, receives $7,500 check from
Rising Tide Capital co-founders and SSC supporters--JPMorgan
Chase and Saint Peter's Univeristy.

A year after winning the challenge, Nicole’s business has grown significantly and she is currently planning and setting goals for the rest of 2014  She used her $7,500 cash prize to design new labels, update her packaging to meet FDA standards and sell her products in the Paramus, West Orange, Madison and Edgewater New Jersey Whole Food locations.

“We are so excited about this opportunity! This is going to give us great credibility and the exposure we need to increase our customer base. Over the next few weeks we will be making appointments with other Whole Foods’ locations with hopes of being in more stores. We are ready to spread the love with DollyMoo,” Nicole said.

Nicole started DollyMoo back in 2010, after creating hand-made body scrubs for herself, family and friends. When she received positive feedback and encouragement to start a business and increase production, she enlisted her sister Amy to help change her hobby into a business. 

Nicole was inspired by her experience in the Start Something Challenge to enroll in RTC’s Community Business Academy where she learned business skills needed to expand and market her business. “While participating in The Start Something Challenge, I gained so many valuable skills and established connections at Rising Tide Capital that inspired me to take the CBA. I spoke with CBA graduates who had raving reviews and were starting their businesses,” said Nicole Silva. “I’d been searching for a business class for a while and taking the CBA seemed like a natural choice. Through the class, I became more confident in running my business, learned how to balance my finances and expanded my network.” 

Now in its third year, the Start Something Challenge business pitch competition was officially launched on May 19 with over $30,000 in cash and prizes. More than just a pitch competition, participants also receive the opportunity to network, perfect an elevator pitch and gain visibility for their business venture. Free to enter, the competition is open to any New Jersey resident over 18 years old, who operates a business earning less than $250,000 annually, or has a strong business idea. For more information on entering click here.

Rising Tide Capital (RTC) is a Jersey City-based nonprofit organization founded in 2004 by Harvard graduates Alex Forrester and Alfa Demmellash. RTC helps entrepreneurs start and grow successful businesses by providing a 12-week Community Business Academy—supplemented by year-round workshops, coaching and networking events. These programs are currently offered in Spanish and in English in four cities across Northern New Jersey: Jersey City, Newark, Union City, and Orange Township. As of January, 838 entrepreneurs have graduated from the CBA and together, they operate over 403 businesses in New Jersey. RTC’s model of entrepreneurship development has received national recognition from President Obama to CNN Heroes.

To learn more, visit  

The Start Something Challenge (SSC) is a statewide pitch competition and business strengthening opportunity for New Jersey entrepreneurs. The Challenge is funded by visionary supporters and organized by Rising Tide Capital, a non-profit organization that helps entrepreneurs start and grow successful businesses. To ensure that every participant has a chance to win the $ 10,00 top prize, Rising Tide Capital provides each entrant with hands-on coaching and mentorship. Free to enter, the competition is open to any New Jersey resident 18 years or older, who operates a microbusiness or has a strong business idea. In 2013, 108 entrepreneurs from 38 towns and cities representing 13 counties in New Jersey completed applications for the Start Something Challenge.

To learn more, visit

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