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In the ancient Aztec language, paQui means “to be happy,” which summed up PaQui Tequila founder and president Javier Martinez’s sentiments on Tuesday at the Save Mart Center.

His Pasadena-based tequila company was crowned the winner of the 2013 Entrepreneur Showcase at Central Valley Venture Forum.

“The forum is such an exciting event,” Martinez said. “I was thrilled to participate and did not expect to be so emotional about winning. This actually encourages me to be a better entrepreneur—it gives me extra energy.”

The showcase is held annually as essentially a main event for the Central Valley Venture Forum.

Startups and other entrepreneurs make a pitch to panel made of venture capitalists and other proven investors.

PaQui beat out four other companies to win the title this year. Although no cash is awarded for winning the contest, previous winners have received funding because of the exposure from the event.

Additional information on Dr. Javier Martinez and PaQui Tequila can be found at www.paquitequila.com.

The forum is presented every year by Fresno State’s Lyles Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and Central Valley Fund.

Source: The Business Journal – http://www.thebusinessjournal.com/news/small-business/9397-paqui-tequila-wins-venture-forum-showcase