5 Competitions for Startups and Entrepreneurs

September 28, 2012

1:09 pm

1. Amazon Web Services Global Start-Up Challenge

For: Startups using Amazon Web Services, with less than $10 million in funding.

Prizes: Up to $100,000 in cash and Amazon Web Services credits, introductions to VCs, and technical mentorship.

Details: Final pitches will be held in January in San Francisco. Four grand prize winners get to “wield the golden hammer” and “usher in the era of cloud computing” by literally smashing a server.

Deadline: November 9, 2012.

2. The Small Business Challenge

For: For-profit US businesses with fewer than 100 employees.

Prizes: Up to $25,000.

Details: Enter your company into the contest, then encourage your fans and followers to vote. It’s sponsored by EarlyShares.com, a crowdfunding platform.

Deadline: October 31, 2012.

3. SoMoLaunch Business Competition

For: US startups and small businesses.

Prizes: $5,000 cash and mentoring from Candace Klein.

Details: The application includes a business plan, financial statements, and financial projections. The contest is sponsored by SoMoLend, a business lending platform.

Deadline: September 30, 2012.

4. FreshAddress

For: Students.

Prizes: $3,000 scholarship.

Details: To win, you have to predict when FreshAddress will process its 3 billionth email address. Processing data is available for the past three months, so some geekery could help. Winners must be following FreshAddress on Twitter or Facebook.

Deadline: Variable.

5. Discovering Start-Ups 2012

For: Startups based in the UK with fewer than 250 employees.

Prizes: Prizes include a ticket to Mobile World Congress 2013, a ticket and a pitching slot at The Cambridge Wireless Future of Wireless International Conference 2013, and a one-year membership to SETsquared, a partnership of universities that provide help to startups.

Details: This is a pitch competition that will be held in London on November 21, 2012. Startups will have five minutes to pitch, and five minutes to take questions from the judges.

Deadline: October 19, 2012.

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Kira M. Newman is a Tech Cocktail writer interested in the harsh reality of entrepreneurship, work-life balance, and psychology. She is the founder of The Year of Happy and has been traveling around the world interviewing entrepreneurs in Asia, Europe, and North America since 2011. Follow her @kiramnewman or contact [email protected]

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