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Applications for Venture Sharks business competition now open

Application deadline March 16

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Feb. 3, 2016) — Applications are bow being accepted for the seventh annual Venture Sharks business competition. The Venture Connectors competition for early-stage companies and entrepreneurs awards a $10,000 prize—about $5,000 in cash and $5,000 in professional services—to the winner. Applications are due by March 16.

vs_Sharktank_headerSquare-300x300The Venture Sharks committee will choose the top ideas to compete during the preliminary round of the competition on April 13, where the field then will be narrowed to four finalists. The final round will be held on May 4 during the monthly Venture Connectors’ luncheon meeting.

In the final round, presenters will be allowed a few minutes to describe their idea to the judges, who then will fire off questions to the presenters in the style of the popular television show, “Shark Tank.” The winner will receive $10,000 in cash and prizes to help them take their idea to market. Final round judges will be announced April 1 and will comprise notable business leaders, entrepreneurs and investors.

The competition is open to businesses or entrepreneurs from any industry in Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio and Tennessee, but presentations for the preliminary and final rounds of competition must be made in person in Louisville. A dedicated LLC or corporation need not have been created, but the idea and business being pitched must not be a direct spinout of a larger parent company. There is no restriction on age of the business, but it must have less than $75,000 of lifetime revenue. The business also cannot have raised, or had invested in it, more than $50,000 from any source at the time of application.

The Venture Sharks winner must agree to use both the cash award and the in-kind services to directly pursue the business opportunity presented in the competition. The winner will be selected based on the viability of their idea, the ability of the final award to positively impact the business and the quality of their presentation. Last year, Venture Sharks received nearly 50 applications. Past winners include: Logjustrips, Gear Brake, Smart Farm, Wicked Sheets, U.S. Chia and Surgical Serenity Solutions. Sponsorship opportunities for the 2016 Venture Sharks competition still are available. For information, contact Larry Horn at (502) 380-6550 or [email protected].

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