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Mentors available for 2019 Wisconsin Governor's Biz Plan Contest
 
01/08/2019 11:52 AM
Crew of mentors on call for contestants in
2019 Wisconsin Governor’s Biz Plan Contest

Experienced mentors from across Wisconsin will be available to offer advice to contestants during the 16th annual Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest.

Initial entries of 250 words are due by 5 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 31, 2019. There is no cost to enter. Visit www.govsbizplancontest.com for more information and to get started.

At any point during the competition, contestants may submit their questions to veteran business mentors who have volunteered their time and expertise to assist entrepreneurs who enter by Jan. 31. Mentors will respond directly to contestants to offer one-on-one consultation.

This year’s group of volunteers includes representatives from SCORE Wisconsin and the Center for Technology Commercialization, which has federal, state and university ties.



SCORE offers free business consulting, business mentoring and business resources, plus low-cost business trainings. The CTC provides support and resources as companies bring their innovations to market, particularly with applications for grants from the federal Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Technology Transfer programs.

As another resource, SCORE will offer free access to many fee-based training classes around the state to all 2018 contestants.

In addition to access to mentors, contestants will receive feedback from scores of judges as the contest progresses.

Since its inception in 2004, more than 3,700 entries have been received and about $2.2 million in cash and in-kind services have been awarded. Contest categories are advanced manufacturing, business services, information technology and life sciences. Past finalists have launched companies that have raised $200 million in angel, venture, grants and venture debt over time – all while creating jobs and economic value for Wisconsin.

Wisconsin residents 18 years old and older are eligible, as are teams from Wisconsin-based businesses and organizations. Businesses or teams from outside the state are also eligible to compete if they demonstrate intent to base their business in Wisconsin. Entrepreneurs may also enter multiple ideas, though each idea must be separate and distinct.

Companies or individuals that have raised less than $25,000 in private equity for their plans in a current form are eligible to enter. Generally, private equity refers to angel and venture capital.

As with past contests, the 2019 competition will take place in stages:

In Phase 1, which is open until 5 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 31, 2019, the contest will accept idea abstracts on the website. Entries should be roughly 250 words (or no more than 2,000 characters, including spaces) and will be graded by the pool of BPC judges. The top 50 idea abstracts will advance to Phase 2.            
In Phase 2, which runs from Feb. 18 to 5 p.m. March 11, 2019, the top 50 idea abstracts will submit an executive summary. The top 20 executive summaries will advance to Phase 3. A mentored “boot camp” for contestants will be held in early March.
In Phase 3, which runs from April 1 to 5 p.m. April 22, 2019, the top 20 executive summaries will prepare full business plans. Judges will review the plans and pick three finalists from each of the four categories to advance to the final presentation round. Mentored practice sessions will be offered to the top 12 in late May.
The top 12, or “Diligent Dozen,” will square off with oral presentations during the Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference on June 4 at Venue 42 in Milwaukee.
Past finalists have launched companies that have raised more than $200 million in angel, venture, grants and venture debt over time – all while creating jobs and economic value for Wisconsin. The contest’s major sponsors include the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp.

The 2018 grand prize winner was NovoMoto, a Madison company. The model is being implemented in the western provinces of the Congo, where the opportunity for cheaper, reliable power will improve lives and provide a profitable business platform over time. Category winners in 2018 were Shockray Self Defense (Advanced Manufacturing), NovoMoto (Business Services), DataChat (Information Technology), and AmebaGone (Life Sciences).

To enter, become a judge or learn about sponsorship opportunities, visit www.govsbizplancontest.com.
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About Evansville - Evansville Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism

About Evansville

Founded in 1839, Evansville was originally referred to as the “the Grove” in reference to a stand of trees just northwest of town. Although our name has changed, Evansville has maintained its charm and small-town, friendly atmosphere.

Our historic roots are important to us, as shown by the numerous restoration projects undertaken by the City of Evansville and downtown businesses over the past decade. Today, the bulk of the buildings along Evansville’s Main Street, and even the brick-paved street itself, have been returned to their former glory.

While we honor the past, we are ever moving forward. Organizations that support new businesses and ideas, as well as our strong K-12 school district are all evidence of Evansville’s investments in our future.

Central Location

Evansville is conveniently located between Janesville and Madison in the northwest corner of Rock County. Positioned within a two hours’ drive of Milwaukee or Chicago, our location ensures the timely delivery of your products, by rail or by road, into the heart of the Midwestern market.

Currently, the Landmark Services Cooperative takes advantage of our centralized location and rail access, operating a distribution operation complete with truck as well as rail terminals in the community. This state-of-the art facility can load corn onto rail cars at the rate of 62,000 bushels an hour – that’s just over 2 minutes per rail car!

Educated, Skilled Workforce

In addition to our centralized location, Evansville boasts a well-educated workforce, with nearly a quarter of residents above age 25 holding a Bachelor’s, Master’s, Professional, or Doctorate degree. For individuals and/or organizations seeking additional training opportunities, Rock County is home to a number of Education & Training Resources, offering a variety of programs to fit most professional and organizational needs.

Quality of Life

With an estimated commuter rate of over 75%, Evansville is home to a large number of families who find value in our quality schools, beautiful parks, as well as the retail and arts district located in our Historic Downtown. With close proximity to some of Rock County‘s finest parks (Gibb’s Lake, Magnolia Bluff), Evansville is home to historic preservationists, outdoor enthusiasts, professionals, and artists alike. As a Discover Wisconsin Choice Destination, Evansville offers residents small-town charm with family-oriented activities for all ages throughout the year.

For more information about the community of Evansville, download our Business Directory & Community Guide.
2018-Evansville-Community-Guide

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