“The behind-the-scenes work has already begun and we’ll start airing in July with businesses open by December,” explains Alan Glazen, whose company Glazen Urban has partnered with COSE and Cleveland Neighborhood Progress to produce this spinoff show of “Cleveland Hustles.”
This new production is independent of LeBron James and CNBC, but it has the blessings of both, Glazen adds. Fox 8 Cleveland will be the media partner.
Like the popular original show, neighborhoods and companies will be competing to attract the eye and financial support of investors.
“Unlike Cleveland Hustles, every kind of business will be eligible, whether you have a storefront or not,” Glazen explains. “The key criterion is that this is not for startups; it’s for companies that have been in business and proving themselves for a few years and now warrant further investment to expand.”
While the neighborhood selection process wasn’t given any prime time coverage on Cleveland Hustles, Glazen says that this time around the process will be wholly transparent. As part of the show, Cleveland Neighborhood Progress will be conducting a competition among 30 different neighborhoods, each vying to be on the receiving end of between $500,000 and $1,000,000 of investment.
As in the original, a large group of hopeful companies will be winnowed down by investors to a selection of 24, which will be winnowed down to eight companies that will compete against each other.
“But in this case, everything we’re going to do we will be doing live,” Glazen says. “You’re going to be seeing the pitches live, you’re going to be seeing the deals live, you’re going to be seeing the neighborhood pitches and selection live. There will be virtually no pre-produced material. It’s reality TV for real.”
The segments will air live on Fox 8, with Kenny “Kickin’ it with Kenny” Crumpton as host, culminating in a primetime show. Content will also be steamed live on the Chain Reaction website (clevelandchainreaction.org).
On March 2, COSE, which will be conducting the entrepreneurial challenges and competitions on the show, will announce how companies can apply to get in the running.
“Food and hospitality are extremely likely to be part of this because there is so much of that in Cleveland, and given the massive success that Cleveland Bagel on Old City Soda have had in these few months since the show. They will definitely be models. But we also expect tech companies and retail that combines with manufacturing,” says Glazen.
“The primary goal here is to create jobs, which in turn creates everything else.”