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A Different Kind of Pitch

IOWA CITY, IA (CBS2/FOX28) --  A new company called Major Trading Cards was born at Cedar Rapids Startup Weekend in March. The business is working on an app to help people buy, earn or trade baseball cards.

Now, one of the founders is even leaving his day job to work on the business, taking a leap of faith trying to have his passion become his job.

Zach Sanderson used to work as a sports photographer at Stanford. He would take pictures of the baseball team, but it was hard to see where the pictures went.

"When I thought of this idea, I was sitting in the first base well, shooting and getting mad because I just found out, Well, they're not going to be using any of these things, Sanderson said during a pitch at 1 Million Cups.

That idea turned into Major Trading Cards in just 54 hours over Startup Weekend. Jason Kristufek is the last remaining member of that original team.

"The thing that attracted me was the baseball aspect, the baseball card aspect, said Kristufek.

"You just kind of come together, said Sanderson. I knew nobody on the team and that night I had formed a team."

Since then, Zach and Jason have been trying to get their app launched, making adjustments along the way.

"One of the first orders of business was concerns with the name so we are now Turnstile Cards, said Sanderson. You heard it here first, I guess."

Thats the kind of tweek thats happened when they decided to go all-in, making what was once an idea in a camera well into something to pay the bills.

What helps is an event like 1 Million Cups, where Zach and Jason can pitch their idea to other entrepreneurs, business owners, or just other creative folks who just happen to stop by.

"Every startup has similar hurdles and things, like "did you ever think of this, said Sanderson.

"Here, the entire room was going around with ideas about "How could we use the cards this way?" or "How could we create an experience this way, said Kristufek.

Theyre giving themselves the summer to make it work, meaning the next three months feel like the bottom of the ninth.

Zach says theyve applied to a startup accelerator that would lend them man power and other help for three months. They find out if theyve been accepted in the next week and a half.

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