Great Northern Development Corporation and the Small Business Development Center present the 3rd Minnow Tank Business Plan Competition: Uniting Northeastern Montana for Economic Growth

Great Northern Development Corporation (GNDC) and the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) are excited to announce the commencement of the 3rd Minnow Tank Business Plan Competition. This transformative initiative is set to unfold across the seven-county region of Northeastern Montana, including Valley, Garfield, McCone, Richland, Roosevelt, Sheridan, and Daniels.

Fostering Economic Development:
The Minnow Tank Competition aims to unite communities with a common goal of economic development by attracting new entrepreneurs and supporting existing businesses. Through the generous sponsorships of local businesses and chambers of commerce, GNDC will award two prize packages of $5,000 each—one to a startup and one to an existing business.

 Showcasing Entrepreneurial Potential:
This competition provides a unique platform for startups and expanding businesses to showcase their potential, with the opportunity to win one of two $5,000 cash awards. The vision is to strengthen and support the existing businesses that form the backbone of local communities.

 Educational Initiatives:
To empower entrepreneurs, SBDC Director Quincy Walter has organized free business plan development classes in each of the seven counties. These classes cover crucial topics such as Business Plan Basics, Marketing, and Small Business Financials. Entrepreneurs planning to compete in the Minnow Tank Business Plan competition are strongly encouraged to attend these classes. 

Key Dates and Events:

Business Plan Submission Deadline: March 13th, 5:00 PM

Minnow Tank Finale: May 3rd

Business Plan Development Class Schedule:

 Glasgow – February 7th, 10:00-12:00, TBD

Wolf Point – February 7th, 2:00-4:00, GNDC 233 Cascade Street

 Sidney – February 8th, 10:00-12:00, Sidney Chamber of Commerce

 Jordan – February 9th, 10:00-12:00, Garfield County Bank Conference Room

Circle –  February 9th, 2:00-4:00, Fairgrounds 

 Plentywood – February 13th, 10:00-12:00, Jubilee Room 224 S Main Street

Scobey – February 13th, 2:00-4:00, Nemont Friendship Room 2 Railroad Ave

 Application Guidelines and Procedures:
Business plan submissions for Minnow Tank are due to GNDC by 5:00 PM on March 13th. Visit for official application guidelines and procedures.

 Minnow Tank Finale:
The culminating event will be held on May 3rd, where fourteen finalists will present their business plans live to a panel of judges, and the audience, who will also be able to vote as well. Support your favorite entrepreneur by attending the Minnow Tank Finale; tickets will be available by calling GNDC.

 Join the Minnow Tank Competition:
New or existing businesses interested in applying for Minnow Tank or those with questions about the events are encouraged to contact Quincy Walter at (406)-653-2590 ext 203 or visit 

 About Great Northern Development Corporation (GNDC):
GNDC is the economic development leader in Northeastern Montana, committed to fostering entrepreneurship and supporting businesses in Northeastern Montana.