Millions of dollars are waiting to be awarded to the most promising energy start-ups out there! There are many business competition deadlines coming up and applying is easy so get started now. Below is a list of competitions with information, resources, and links to help you on your way.
SEC’s Energy Entrepreneurship Resources
Other resources: Email SEC Entrepreneurship Czar John Fyffe at JohnRF@stanford.edu, or see our list of Stanford Entrepreneurship Resources.
TomKat Center’s Innovation Transfer Program
Deadline: Rolling Applications. Apply now.
Grants & Resources: Seed grants, mentorship and other resources to aid commercialization of sustainable energy inventions and innovations
The TomKat Center for Sustainable Energy solicits proposals on a rolling basis for its Innovation Transfer Program. The Program assists Stanford University faculty, staff and students commercialize breakthrough sustainable energy inventions and innovations by providing pivotal seed grants. These awards are intended to bridge the gap between research funding and private-sector and venture funding. The grants are intended to fund prototype development, customer validation, market trials and are intended to assist participants develop a more business-centric approach to the potential markets and applications of their concepts through close linkages with other Stanford University entrepreneurship resources. The program also provides access to domain experts including successful entrepreneurs and innovators, executives with experience in startups, and venture investors. A Mentor is assigned to each funded project to provide the research team with ongoing guidance. Details about the Program including application materials may be found at the TomKat Center website.
For more information visit: http://tomkat.stanford.
Energy Innovations Small Grant Program
Deadline: April 10th, 2014
The Energy Innovations Small Grant (EISG) Program provides up to $95,000 for hardware projects and $50,000 for modeling projects to small businesses, non-profits, individuals and academic institutions to conduct research that establishes the feasibility of new, innovative energy concepts. Research projects must target one of the PIER R&D areas, address a California energy problem and provide a potential benefit to California electric and natural gas ratepayers.
To encourage participation in the program the application and award process has been simplified and assistance is available in gaining access to technical experts.
The Grant Application Manual and supporting documents for the current solicitation can be downloaded from the solicitation notice page.
If you have any questions regarding the EISG Program or grant application, please contact the EISG Program Administrator by phone at (619) 594-1049, by fax at (619) 594-0996 or by email at email@example.com.
January 15, 2014. Apply Now
R&D and Validation Awards Available for Innovative Microgrid Solutions
The 2013 TechBridge Challenge seeks innovative hardware and software proposals for microgrid operation. Selected awardees will receive technology development and validation services, such as prototyping or demonstration, from Fraunhofer – one of the world’s leading applied R&D organizations.
Distributed energy resources and microgrids are being proposed and deployed as platforms to improve energy reliability, increase efficiency, and reduce costs. Early adoption of microgrids has occurred in island locations, factories, campuses, and military bases. A recent market study predicts the microgrid market will reach $15 billion by 2020. To support this rapid growth and address wider markets, new opportunities for innovation are emerging to reduce adoption barriers.
For the purposes of this solicitation, a microgrid is defined as a combination of energy generating resources (electrical and optional thermal) with an associated electrical energy load profile between ~100kW and ~2MW that may be islanded from the main grid.
Awardees will receive technology validation and development services valued at more than $25,000 from the Fraunhofer Center for Sustainable Energy Systems (CSE) or another Fraunhofer Institute. These services help to de-risk technologies, lowering barriers to private investment and strategic partnerships. Over the past 3 years, 18 TechBridge startups have received over $36 million in follow-on funding.
Applicants will be evaluated based on the potential impact of their technology solution on the adoption of microgrids due to significant cost and feature advantages over existing solutions. Your IP is fully protected in this process.
- Comprise at least 2 team members
- Be incorporated or plan to incorporate if selected for an award through the Challenge
- Disclose the status of IP relevant to the submission
- Have raised no more than $2 million from institutional investors prior to application submission (excludinggrants, as well as funding from family and friends)
- Have less than $4 million in cumulative revenue prior to application submission
Preliminary information provided in the application should be non-confidential. Teams must be available for up to two telephone interviews to be scheduled after applications are received. Applicants must complete the online application form (techbridge-microgrid2013.istart.org) by Wednesday, January 15, 2014
2013 Cleantech Open Business Accelerator
May 1st, 2013. Apply now.
Prizes: Regional Prizes and the Grand Prize of $250,000 (US) in funding and services
The Cleantech Open runs the world’s largest cleantech accelerator. Our mission is to find, fund and foster entrepreneurs with big ideas that address today’s most urgent energy, environmental, and economic challenges. Since 2006 our one-of-a-kind annual Accelerator & Competition has helped over 700 companies bring their ideas to fruition by providing them with training, mentoring, relationships and funding opportunities to help grow them into world-class cleantech companies. These companies have since raised $770M. Fueled by a network of more than 3,000 volunteers, the Cleantech Open unites the best clean tech ideas with the resources they need.
For more information visit: www.cleantechopen.org.
Stanford BASES 150k Challenge
January 25th. Apply now.
Prizes: 1st Place for Each of 3 Tracks Wins $50,000.
BASES, Business Association of Stanford Entrepreneurial Students, hosts an annual business competition with three challenges : 1) Entrepreneurial Challenge, 2) Social Entrepreneurial Challenge, and 3) Product Showcase. Teams that advance passed the first round gain access to the FORGE Accelerator, a start-up accelerator where teams gain access to funds, mentors, skills workshops, legal council, and networking events with VCs.
For more information visit the BASES 150k website.
January 27th. Extended to February 10th! Apply now.
- 1st Place: $100,000. 2nd Place: $40,000. 3rd Place: $20,000.
- Transformational Idea Winner: $5,000 + Scholarship to Draper University’s entrepreneurial program
FLoW, hosted by Cal Tech, is the West Coast regional competition of the national Department of Energy National Clean Energy Business Plan Competition (link). Last years winner was a Stanford team, so lets continue the tradition and take home 1st place! FLoW has 2 tracks: 1) Business Ready and 2) Transformational Idea. FLoW facilitates finding appropriate mentors for teams that are advancing. With great resources, substantial awards, and plenty of opportunities to highlight your idea, don’t hesitate to apply.
For more information visit the FLoW website.
MIT Clean Energy Prize
March 1st. Apply now.
- Grand Prize: $150,000. Runner-Up: $100,000.
- Winner of Each of 3 Tracks: $20,000
The Clean Energy Prize, hosted by MIT, is the East Coast regional competition of the national Department of Energy National Clean Energy Business Competition (link). In its fifth year, the MIT CEP has become a premier energy competition that has helped shape the other DoE Regional Competitions. CEP has 3 tracks to submit to: 1) Renewable Energy, 2) Energy Efficiency, and 3) Infrastructure and Resources, so start refining your start-up idea, submit your application, and get ready to pitch.
For more information visit the MIT CEP website.
Rice Business Plan Competition
February 18th. Apply now.
- 1st Place Clean Energy Prize: $100,000
- Over $1.3 million awarded in 2011 alone
The Rice Business Plan Competition is the “World’s richest and largest graduate level business plan competition”. With 13 years of experience, the RBPC has an abundance of resources and opportunities that entrepreneurs shouldn’t miss out on. Not only can start-ups grab the 1st Place Clean Energy Prize of $100k, but there are dozens of other prizes ranging from a few thousand dollars to $600k + including equity, in-kind awards, and cash prizes for the RBPC Grand Prize Winner. Applying is easy. Not only can you win significant amounts of money and advance your start-up, but you are guaranteed to learn what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur.
For more information visit the RBPC website.
January 27th. Apply now.
Prizes: Winner: £10 000 cash.
The CleanTech Challenge, hosted by the London Business School and University College London since 2009, is a business plan competition that helps students form teams and develop their clean technology business ideas through a 3-stage competition. Participants receive guidance, feedback, and mentorship from industry professionals throughout the competition. 10 finalist teams compete in live “Boot Camp” finals in London on April 25th-26th.
For more information visit the CleanTech Challenge website.