Local technology entrepreneurs are invited to participate in this year’s WPI Venture Forum Five-Minute Pitch Contest which has become an integral part of the Venture Forum’s commitment to growing entrepreneurship and technology-based businesses, and is designed to generate investment interest for participating entrepreneurs.
The Pitch Contest consists of two rounds of selection. In the first round, applications are evaluated anonymously by a group of area business leaders. Ten finalists will be selected from among the applicants and invited to compete at the Venture Forum’s final meeting of the season, scheduled for 5:30 p.m. on February 12, 2013. The deadline to submit an application to enter the contest is January 18, 2013.
In the final round, each company will be given five minutes to pitch their business to a panel of expert judges and the Forum’s audience who will evaluate the entrepreneur’s presentation skills and overall performance. Each presentation will be followed by a two minute open discussion between the judges and the entrepreneur. Once all the pitches are complete, the judges will deliberate and select a winner for the top prize. An audience prize will also be awarded based on the voting results.
This year’s contestants will be evaluated on the following criteria:
· Business model: How the business generates revenue and profit.
· Innovation: How innovation is applied in the business (e.g., the technology associated with the product/service, how a product/service is marketed).
· Market opportunity: The size of the market, the ability of the company to capture market share and generate profit out of the market share.
· Competitive advantage: What allows the company to compete successfully in the market place (e.g., Value Proposition, IP strategy).
· Leadership Team: The quality, breadth and experience of the team (management, advisory board, etc.).
Wolf Greenfield and Gesmer Updegrove LLP serve as co-sponsors for this year’s WPI Venture Forum’s Five-Minute Pitch Contest.