13-year-old Nashville candle maker wins national kid entrepreneur competition

Posted at 6:56 AM, Jul 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-17 07:56:57-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — A 13-year-old candle maker from Hermitage won the Idea Tank For Kids competition.

Kierra Perkins runs Kandles By Kierra. She started her business when she was 11. Now, two years into it, she has eight uniquely scented candles which she sells at craft shows, malls and online.

"A lot of people told me that I should go on Shark Tank," said Kierra Perkins. "I sat down and watched a lot of episodes and I was like I don't think I'm ready for this."

Perkins discovered the Idea Tank contest on social media. She and more than 150 other kids from across the country submitted their ideas to a group of judges.

"I was more comfortable doing this one because it was all kid entrepreneurs like me, and I was also excited to meet other kid entrepreneurs and hear their ideas," Perkins said.

First, Perkins was selected as one of the 20 finalists. Then, she joined a Zoom call with the other finalists where she presented a five-minute pitch to judges and answered any follow-up questions.

"When I was pitching in front of the kids it felt like I was connected to them. I was very comfortable and confident that I could pitch my idea in front of the kids and hopefully I can inspire them too," she said.

After deliberating, the judges announced Perkins was the winner. She received a $1,000 prize which she plans to put toward her business and college.

Perkins would like her win to be an example for other kids.

"I love to encourage kids and tell them that a young creative mind can grow a business and they do not have to wait until they are an adult to achieve their goals," she said.