Indigenous Business Competition TV Series Coming to APTN Now Open for Contestants

VANCOUVER, BC, Jan. 18, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Sparkly Frog Clan Productions, Inc. is proud to announce a new Indigenous business competition series to be broadcast on Canada’s Indigenous national television network, APTN.

The call for contestants for season 1 of Bears’ Lair TV opens today, January 18, 2022. Over the course of nine episodes of the series, 18 emerging and established Indigenous entrepreneurs from across the nation compete for $180,000 in prize money to take their enterprise to the next level. All 18 contestants pitch to a panel of judges – The Bears – over six try-out episodes. The Bears select one $10,000 winner from each try-out episode and these six move to the semi-finals. The final four advance to the season finale, where one deserving Indigenous entrepreneur is awarded a $100,000 grand prize.

The Bears are an expert panel of four core judges plus an additional guest judge each episode. Judges bring years of knowledge, experience, and expertise to the show. Contestants receive group business training and individual coaching from industry experts to polish their business pitches and prepare for the television broadcast experience.

The core judges’ panel is made up of a group of diverse Indigenous business leaders from across the country. For season 1 of Bears’ Lair, Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business, President and CEO, Tabatha Bull, of Nipissing First Nation in Ontario, Tuccaro Group of Companies President and CEO, Dave Tuccaro of the Mikisew Cree Nation in Alberta, Steel River Group President and CEO, Trent Fequet from the Innu community of Pakuashipi in Quebec, and Sparkly Frog Clan Productions, Inc. Bears’ Lair Executive Producer and Founder, Geena Jackson of the Sechelt (shíshálh) First Nation in BC.

“I couldn’t be more excited to bring this opportunity to Indigenous entrepreneurs,” said Bears’ Lair Executive Producer, Geena Jackson. “It is time to feed the spirit of Indigenous business to showcase the diversity and resiliency of Indigenous entrepreneurs. It’s time for a reality show with real impact to bring forth our experts to share their wealth of knowledge to enhance the future of the Indigenous economy. This is a show by Indigenous entrepreneurs for Indigenous entrepreneurs that celebrates Indigenous values and the quadruple bottom line – balancing people, planet, profit and purpose – that are woven into so many Indigenous businesses across the nation.”

A guest judge from a Bears’ Lair sponsor organization joins The Bears each regular episode. Lifetimes of business experience and coaching are shared with contestants from a variety of industries. A group of special guest judges also join for the semi-final and final rounds of the competition.

The Bears’ Lair creates a new path in Canadian reality television with five key Indigenous twists on typical business competitions. Judges consider the entrepreneurs’ social impact and award points for purpose as they select winners for guaranteed cash prizes (as opposed to competitors pitching to investors who would take ownership in their company). Prize funds will be awarded alongside business mentorship to fuel their business.

Contestants for season 1 of Bears’ Lair apply now, at


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