MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition

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The MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition is one of the largest and most famous business plan competitions in the world. Entirely student-managed, students from all programs and levels at MIT organize and enter the $100K. Teams must include at least 1 full-time MIT student, but membership is not restricted to the MIT community. The Competition is overseen by the MIT School of Engineering and is supported by the MIT Entrepreneurship Center at the MIT Sloan School of Management.

It was started in 1990 as the $10K competition, and continued to grow throughout the 1990s. In 1996 the $10K evolved into the $50K with $30K going to the winner and $10K each of two runners up. In 2006, the $50K added another competition focused on business plans for low-income communities to complement the traditional business venture competition. Subsequently, the competition has rebranded as the MIT $100K.

MIT $100K Elevator Pitch Contest[edit]

The MIT $100K Elevator Pitch Contest is put on every year by the MIT $100K organizing committee. It is held in the fall of each year and is intended to provide a way for entrepreneurs with ideas to form teams. It is considered a warm-up event for the Executive Summary Contest held in the winter and the Business Plan Contest held in the spring. In the Elevator Pitch Contest, each contestant is given 60 seconds in front of a crowd to give their "elevator pitch," with the winner receiving a cash prize. This contest is open to the public.

MIT $100K Executive Summary Contest[edit]

The MIT $100K Executive Summary Contest was put on every year by the MIT $100K organizing committee until 2010. It used to take place in the winter of academic year and was intended to provide a way for entrepreneurs to get early feedback on their business plans. It used to be a warm-up event for the Business Plan Contest held in the spring. Each team used to submit a two-page Executive Summary describing their idea. Submissions were reviewed by a panel of judges with the winner receiving a cash prize.

MIT $100K ACCELERATE Contest[edit]

The MIT $100K ACCELERATE Contest has replaced the MIT $100K Executive Summary Contest in 2011. It will be held in the winter of academic year and is intended to help teams build a robust prototype for their start-up idea. Teams will work on creating a demo of their idea over December and January, and the best demos will be presented in the ACCELERATE Finale Show to a crowd of hundreds. MIT $100K will be providing resources and mentorship to help teams build their demos which will be reviewed by a panel of judges with the winner receiving a cash prize.[1]

MIT $100K Business Plan Contest[edit]

The MIT $100K Business Plan Contest is the flagship of the MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition. In the spring, semi-finalists are selected from all business plan submissions. At the awards ceremony, the top team within the business venture competition is awarded $100,000. In 2009, Ksplice won the 20th MIT $100K Business Plan Contest Grand Prize for their rebootless update technology.

Winners - Business Plan Contest[edit]

Year Winner Track and Description Team Members
2016 Astreaus n/a Joseph Azzarelli
2015 Raptor Maps n/a Nikhil Vadhavkar, Forrest Meyen, Edward Obropta
2014 Disease Diagnostic Group n/a
2013 3dim Mobile Track Andrea Colaço, Nan-Wei Gong, Vivek K. Goyal, Ahmed Kirmani, Nate Stewart, and Rahul Tejwani
2010 C-Crete Products & Services Track Rouzbeh Shahsavari, Natanel Barookhian
2009 Ksplice Web/IT Track Tim Abbott, Jeff Arnold, Waseem Daher, Anders Kaseorg, Nelson Elhage
2008 Diagnostics for All Life Sciences Track Roozbeh Ghaffari, Jon Puz, Hayat Sindi, Gilbert Tang, Carol Waghorne, Krishna Yeshwant
2007 Robopsy Medical Devices (for biopsies) John Harthorne, Conor Walsh, Nevan Hanumara
2006 Semprus BioSciences (formerly SteriCoat) Surface Modifications on Medical Devices Chris Loose, David Lucchino, Joel Moxley, Mike Hencke and Vipin Gupta
2005 Balico Medical Devices Baruch Schori, Harry Lee, Kathleen Sienko, Jimmy Robertsson
2004 Active Joint Brace
Now:Myomo Inc.
Medical Devices Mira Sahney, Kailas Narendran, John McBean, Joe Jackson, Hocking Chen, Raja Surapanani,
2003 SmartCells Medical Devices Todd C. Zion, Robert Bruch, Martin Curiel, John Hebert, Tsafrir Vanounou
1998 Direct Hit Technologies Internet search engine Mike Cassidy, Gary Culliss, Steven Yang
1991 Stylus Innovation Barcode-based remote shopping Krisztina Holly, Mike Cassidy, John Barrus

Entrepreneurship for Development Competition[edit]

The Entrepreneurship for Development Competition is a competition for business plans that are judged on the following criteria: uniqueness of business idea, management strength, path to sustainability and social impact. The competition was added in 2006 as a complement to the Business Venture Competition due to increasing demand and interest in socially conscious ideas. In the spring, semi-finalists are selected from all business plan submissions. Semi-finalists submit more detailed business plans and 5-6 finalists are then chosen. At the awards ceremony, the top team is awarded the Entrepreneurship for Development grand prize.

Winners - Entrepreneurship for Development Competition[edit]

In 1998, a dual award within the Venture Competition was awarded to a pair of finalists including Volunteer Community Connection. At the time, VCC was a non-traditional entry into the competition and has since served as a motivating example for the genesis of the MIT $100K Developmental Entrepreneurship Competition. As a result, they are listed as a winner and implicitly as an innovator within the Entrepreneurship for Development Competition.

Year Winner Description Team Members
2007 Bagazo Alternate Fuels from Agricultural Waste Johan Löfström, Felicita Holsztejn
2006 CentroMigrante Sustainable Housing for Migrant Communities Illac Diaz, Neil Ruiz, Tina Laforteza, Artessa Salvidar-Sali, Bianca Locsin, Chester Yu
1998 Volunteer Community Connection The Volunteer Community Connection enables the easy and automated sign-up and management of volunteers with non-profit agencies. Michael Bryzek, Jonathan Allen, Oumi Mehrotra, Emily Sandberg, Mark Y. Sun

Notable companies formed through the competition[edit]

Since its founding, the $100K Competition has helped launch more than 60 companies with an aggregate value of greater than $10.5 billion. Prominent $100K alumni companies include Akamai, net.Genesis, and C-Bridge.

Year Competition Result Company Result Exit Value
1991 Grand-Prize Winner Stylus Innovation Acquired - 1996 $12.8M
1995 Finalist Harmonix, Inc. Acquired - 2006 $175M
1998 Grand-Prize Winner Direct Hit Acquired - 2000 $517M
1998 Finalist Akamai IPO - 1999 $26.00 per share
2003 Finalist Brontes Technologies Acquired by 3M - 2006 $95M
2010 Finalist Pushpins Acquired by Ebates - 2012 $10-15M

History: MIT $10K/$50K/$100K Entrepreneurial Competition[edit]

The competition was founded in the 1989-1990 academic year and was initially intended as a promotional vehicle for the MIT Entrepreneurs Club (now the MIT E-Club.) Club members Richard Durling-Shyduroff and Douglas Ling along with club Founder Peter Mui envisioned a cross-campus event that brought MIT's varied schools together to identify and support innovative ideas on campus. The goal was to create a safe, nurturing, (relatively controlled) sandbox environment where fledging entrepreneurs could try their wings. The lead alumni donor was George Hatsopoulos of Thermo Electron. with additional generous support from other alumni, the Sloan School (Dean Lester Thurow) and Engineering School (Acting Dean Jack Kerrebrock.)

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