OtterBox Founder Splashes $250K on Colorado Business Plan Challenge
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for entrants. Startups must be seeking capital, and more established companies must be looking for growth capital. They also need a completed product capable of generating some revenue, or to have raised a minimum of $100,000 and used it for research or product development.
The organizers felt it was important to create a contest that is not just for startups that are in their infancy, Hoeven said.
“There have been a lot of competitions for startups, and in our experience, we realize [it can take companies years] before they finally figure out that innovative, high-growth opportunity,” Hoeven said.
There’s also a parallel competition known as the Blue Ocean Enterprises Collegiate Challenge for entrepreneurs attending any university in Colorado. That will award $20,000 to the winner.
Colorado State and Blue Ocean hope to make the event an annual fixture, said Charisse Bowen, director of the CSU business school’s Institute for Entrepreneurship. They hope it connects to and expands on other initiatives in Colorado that nurture startup communities, like the Techstars accelerator in Boulder, and will raise Fort Collins’s profile among entrepreneurs.
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