Maryland's $300k competition. Incubation included.
Maryland launched the InvestMaryland Challenge today. This is a national business competition that gives seed and early-stage companies a chance to pitch their business and win $300,000 in venture capital funding. Winners can get a $100,000 top prize in three categories: life sciences; IT (hardware and software); and general business. They'll also get access to resources like incubator space and legal services. Applications are due by December 13. Judging will occur in late February and the winners will be announced next March.
Only small(ish) companies are eligible -- ones with fewer than 25 employees and annual revenues of less than $1 million. The IT and life sciences categories are open only to Maryland-based companies; companies outside Maryland may compete in the general category but if they win they'll have to relocate their business to Maryland
“The InvestMaryland Challenge is an important part of an overall strategy to strengthen our greatest competitive asset as a State and as a nation: the talent, ingenuity and education of our entrepreneurs,” said Maryland's Governor O’Malley. “Launching this Challenge demonstrates that we believe in investing in the best and brightest innovative ideas so that we can compete and win in the New Economy.”