Basic Requirements:

  • Intellectual Property Rights:The proposed business should not be in violation of any intellectual property rights; including but not limited to patent infringement.
  • Funding Limitations:
    • Teams or team members are limited to receiving up to a combined $500,000 in funding from debt and equity funding sources including, but not limited to, venture capital, angel investors, or private funding sources.
    • Funding limitations exclude any grants received.
    • The amount and source of secured capital arrangements should be clearly identified in the team’s Executive Summary.
  • Revenue Limitations:Teams or team members are limited to lifetime earned revenues of $1,000,000 or lower since the inception of the company or business concept.
    • The amount and source of generated revenue should be clearly identified in the team’s Executive Summary.

Selection Criteria:

Teams are judged at all stages on the following five criteria:

I. Attractiveness of the business model
How the business creates, delivers and captures value.(1)Is the business model financially feasible, fundable, and scalable?

II. Quality of product, service and/or solution
Quality and clarity of business idea. Is the value proposition well aligned with customer needs? Is the value proposition differentiated? Does the solution offer substantial and lasting appeal? Is there evidence of validation?

III. Market opportunity and competitive positioning
Market size/structure, accessibility, potential barriers to entry, growth rate, capacity, etc. Is there a product-market fit? Is market share attainable? Does the business have a competitive advantage relative to existing players addressing the same need?

IV. Team qualifications and experience
Relevant education/experience, business track record, access to resources, passion, professionalism, overall strength/balance of team.

V. Overall attractiveness of venture
Clear vision for long-term success. Is it a killer idea? Can the team adapt? How likely is the business to succeed? Is it an attractive prospect for an investor?