The Path to Prosperity Sustainable Business Concept Development Competition is open to individuals, for-profit businesses and tribal entities that have or intend to have a significant operational presence in Alaska. The business idea may be an original business concept or an extension of a current business activity. It can be a product, service or social venture. Business ideas will be judged primarily on the basis of their feasibility and their positive social impact. Feasibility will focus on business fundamentals, including a market and competition analysis and marketing strategies, implementation feasibility, strength of financial projections and quality of the management team. Social impact will focus on how the business contributes to conservation and sustainable use of local natural resources, the extent to which the business revenue stays within the local economy, and how the business contributes to the development of local business leadership and community self-determination. To enter the competition, each entrant must consent to follow these rules:
Registration Each entrant must submit a completed Apply to Compete registration form and business concept description to the competition administrator by the registration deadline in order to be considered for the competition.
Round 1: Apply to Compete A webinar will be held on April 5, 2016 to answer questions and provide more information about the competition. Anyone interested in applying is encouraged to participate in the webinar. The Apply to Compete registration form and business concept description are due May 1, 2016. No late submission will be accepted with absolutely any exception. Business concept descriptions are limited to seven pages total. Any pages beyond seven will not be read by the judges. The competition administrator will first screen each submitted registration form for completeness and eligibility. For all entries that pass initial screening, judges will score the business concepts in order to determine the top scoring entries that advance to Round 2. Round 1 is judged by the Competition Committee, consisting of one representative each from The Nature Conservancy, Haa Aaní Community Development Fund/ Haa Aaní, LLC, and the University of Alaska Southeast. Twelve entries will be selected to advance to Round 2: the top six rural applicants by overall score, and the top six from the remaining applicant pool. An applicant residing in and/or locating a business in a community other than Juneau, Ketchikan and Sitka is considered a rural applicant. In order to ensure representation from around the region, a maximum of two business plans from each community will be allowed to compete in Round 2.To ensure the quality of the business plans developed in the final round, the organizers reserve the right to select fewer entries if the submissions do not meet judges’ quality standards of a minimum of 50 points out of a possible 100 points from each judge during the scoring process.
Round 2: Develop Your Business Concept Participants advancing to Round 2 will be required to attend an in-person weekend Boot Camp for entrepreneurs. All travel, meals and lodging will be provided. The Boot Camp Weekend will be held September 23-25, 2016. Boot Camp Weekend will provide workshops and opportunities for networking. The 12 participants who advance to Round 2 will be assigned one or more advisors to help develop the Round 2 entry. There is no required format for the submitted business plans. Please see Entry Requirements for page limits. Round 2 participants will receive detailed information for Business Plan entry requirements and content at the Boot Camp Weekend. All electronic submissions must be attached to an email as a single document with the business name in the file name (example: businessname.pdf). All electronic submissions will include the following in the subject line of the email: P2P Competition. Entries can also be mailed or dropped off in person. An independent panel of judges, selected by the Competition Committee from different fields (business, marketing and technology), will score entries for Round 2 and will select two winners. One winner will be the highest scoring rural entry and the second will be the highest scoring entry from the remaining business plans.
Confidentiality While the competition organizers and judges are bound by ethical considerations to keep information confidential, neither the organizers nor the judges will sign non-disclosure agreements with any of the participants as part of the competition process. The organizers reserve the right to use the following information about each business concept to publicize the competition and the Innovation Summit:
• The name and location of the business.
• A brief description of the company provided as part of the Apply to Compete Entry Form (subject to confidentiality of proprietary information).
• The names of all applicants mentioned explicitly in the business plan.
• Any photographs taken during the competition.
Disclaimers Participation in this competition gives entrants no guarantees, expressed or implied, to any awards or to any potential or future funding. Copies of business plans submitted to the competition will not be returned to the entrepreneurs. Participants agree that the organizers of the competition are not liable for any direct or indirect damages, including any loss of revenue that may or may not be related to business advice received in conjunction with the competition. The Competition Committee reserves the right to disqualify, in its sole and absolute discretion, any participant from the competition at any time (before or after a judging round or the award of any prize) for any reason. Reasons for disqualification may include, but are not limited to, plagiarism and any other form of dishonesty, misappropriation or infringement of the intellectual property of others, and any failure to comply with these rules and regulations. Disqualified participants shall forfeit all prizes awarded to them.
Changes to the Competition, Rules or Organization The Competition Committee reserve the right to amend or change the Path to Prosperity Sustainable Business Development Competition, its rules or organization.
Competition Administrators: Shawn Blumenshine or Paul Hackenmueller Haa Aaní, LLC One Sealaska Plaza Juneau, AK 99801 P2P@sealaska.com, 907.586.9122
Important Dates and Deadlines
- Informational Webinar: 5:30 p.m. AKDT, April 5, 2016
- Apply to Compete and concept description deadline: 11:59 p.m. AKDT, May 1, 2016
- Boot Camp Weekend: September 23-25, 2016
- Business Plan submission deadline: 11:59 p.m. AKDT, December 1, 2016
- Notification of Winners: January, 2017
- Winners attend Innovation Summit: February, 2017