• Last modified 3 days ago (March 15, 2018)


Centre entrepreneurs place 1st in county

Staff writer

Who knew that buying and selling sports cards could be a profitable business in more ways than one.

Centre seniors Cole Srajer and Max Svoboda were pleasantly surprised to learn that their business, Cole’s Cards, placed first in the Marion County Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge last week at Tabor College.

“I didn’t know there was money,” Cole said, “but when we received $1,000, we were happy to accept it.”

Cole got the idea for the business last summer after he stumbled across sports memorabilia online that could be purchased in bulk and sold individually at a mark-up. He saw it as a way to earn extra money for college.

He wrote a business plan, made purchasing and selling arrangements, and opened a bank account. He sold items on Twitter, and the business grew quickly.

“It got out of reach, so I brought Max in to help,” he said.

“I’m an employee,” Max said.

Their customers range from high school age to 70. Football cards are popular in fall, basketball cards in winter, and baseball cards in spring.

Cards are purchased at $1 apiece and sold for $2.50 or $3. Any cards that aren’t sold can be returned for the original purchase price.

Cole said purchases range from $10 to $50. Cards are delivered in bubble-wrap envelopes.

At the competition, the boys explained the business plan to the judge, gave a power point presentation, and handed out business cards.

Cole kept $600 of the award and gave $400 to Max.

They will take their business plan to state competition April 24 at Kansas State University.

Both young men are planning to attend KSU in the fall. They plan to room together and continue the business as a way to earn extra money. They are considering establishing a business website.

Braxton Smith of Centre placed third and won $300 for his online business, Look Extra, which sells clothing and accessories for retailers.

Jacob Bittle of Centre also competed with his JLB Custom Knives business.

Colin Williams and Sam Richmond of Marion finished second and won $500 for their 3-year-old business, Nothin’ But Nuts, which sells a variety of flavored nuts. It was the third year the business entered the contest but the first year with Richmond as co-owner.

All three can submit their business plans as possible “wild card” entries for the state contest. Fifteen wild cards will be chosen.

The competition was organized by Network Kansas and sponsored by Barkman Honey Company, Ag Service Inc., Ag Power Inc., CSI, and CB Baked Goods. Eight teams competed.

Last modified March 15, 2018