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Student Accelerate Michigan 2015

Please join other student-led teams from across the State of Michigan to pitch your business venture idea, meet investors from around the Country and win money to start your venture!  There are $10,000 in prizes! 


You will upload a brief summary of your business plus a one (1) minute YouTube video describing the key points of your business.  These will be reviewed by a panel of experienced judges.  The top teams will progress to the semi-finals in Detroit on November 5, 2015 during Accelerate Michigan.  If selected, you will be asked to deliver a five minute pitch to a panel of judges using approximately five slides to describe your business venture.


This is a Michigan specific competition, and any and all student entrepreneurs across Michigan are welcome to apply and participate, so long as these rules and guidelines are followed:


1) The company or idea MUST be majority (over 50%) owned by students.

2) All University grade levels are accepted.

3) The company or idea cannot have over $10,000 in revenue, including third party investment.

4) If a legal entity has been formed around the idea, that entity must be less than a year old with the earliest incorporation date of March 30, 2015.


In addition, the winning team will get an automatic bid into Greenlight Michigan, a statewide competition hosted by Michigan State University.


Applicants will be notified the week of 10/19/15 of the semi-finalist selections, a mentor session will be held on 10/28/15 and a 5- minute PowerPoint presentation will be due on 11/1/15.  See this link for a great resource in creating your pitch: http://www.ceogvsu.com/pitching-basics/


Semi-Finalists Q&A

- Do we have to make our presentation around the business model canvas?

     No, please create your pitch around the following criteria:

     - Is the Market Size, Value Prop., Competitive Situation, Financial and Feasibility realistic?

     - Compelling story? Strong Team? Delivery professional? Visuals engaging?

     - What is the product and why is it distinctive?

     - Assumptions realistic? How will you make money?

     - What are next milestones?  Likely to execute? What will you do with winnings?

- What is the Mentor Session on 10/28/15?

     The Mentor session is a review of your draft presentation by experts who will give you valuable suggestions and feedback.

- Is the Mentor session required?

     Yes - if selected, you will receive more information on the logistics.

- Will I be able to change my slides after I submit them on 11/1/15?

     No, we are not allowing any changes and they must be in the PowerPoint format.

- Can I have a video and audio on my slides?

     We encourage no A/V on the slides as it can cause technical complications at the event.

- Is there a maximum amount of slides?

     We are not setting a max on the slides but remember that you only have 5 minutes to pitch so we recommend about 5 slides or so.


If selected as a semi-finalist, please submit your Presentation (Powerpoints only) to Lori Fischer lfischer@spartaninnovations.org by 11/1/15.  You will have 5 minutes each to pitch to the judges and their will be 2 minutes of judges comments but no questions for a chance to win a total of $10,000 in cash prizes.  Please also include a PDF to send to Lori and make sure to bring a backup jump drive with you to the event.

First round will be from 11:00am -12:30 p.m.  You are invited to stay for lunch at 12:30 where the student finalists will be announced and finalists will pitch to the entire crowd at 2:15 p.m.  Then the winners will be announced at the reception later that evening around 5 p.m.

If you are planning to stay the night before then you can get a room at the Westin Book Cadillac, where the competition will be held, at 1114 Washington Blvd, Detroit.  There is also a Holiday Inn just across the street that will have some rooms available.

- See more at: http://accelerate2015.istart.org/#sthash.3YyysOoz.dpuf


Please send any questions to Lori Fischer.


Best Wishes!

The Student Accelerate Team