The 2021 Rice Business Plan Competition is now open to student-driven, student-created, and/or student-managed startups all over the world. This is going to be a three-day intense experience for students to pitch to investors, receive feedbacks, advance their startup, and compete for a prize in money.
Do you have interest in this student startup competition? Read on.
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The Rice Business Plan Competition (RBPC)
The Rice Business Plan Competition (RBPC) is the world’s richest and largest graduate-level student startup competition. It is hosted and organised by the Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship and Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Business at Rice University.
The Rice Alliance is Rice University’s internationally-recognized initiative devoted to the support of entrepreneurship. And, this is the 21st year of the competition. Currently, it has grown from nine startup teams competing for $10,000 in prize money in 2001, to 42 startups from around the world competing for more than $1.5 million in cash and prizes.
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Highlights Of The Competition
The 2021 Rice Business Plan Competition objectives include;
- Real-world opportunities to learn what’s required to successfully launch a new business
- Mentoring from investors and experienced entrepreneurs
- Networking with potential venture capitalists and other investors for three days
- High-caliber, experienced judges, the majority of whom are senior level investors, entrepreneurs and industry leaders
- Personalized, individual feedback during three separate sessions as well as on your written business plan before the competition
- Competition against top-ranked and emerging global student-led startups
Basically, the goal is to provide the best overall educational and entrepreneurial experience of any business plan/new venture competition. And, this achievement is evident so far especially from feedbacks from past competitors and judges.
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2021 Rice Business Plan Competition Sectors
Some of the sectors you can compete in include;
Energy, Cleantech and Sustainability (including but not limited to): Agriculture/Agtech, Batteries, and Storage, Decarbonization/Climate Tech, Energy Infrastructure, Oil& Gas Technologies, Renewable/Alternative Energy, Recycling, New and Non-Carbon Fuels, Transportation/Electric Vehicles, Water.
Hard Tech (including but not limited to): Advanced Manufacturing, Advanced Materials, Aerospace/Spacetech, AR&VR (Augmented & virtual reality), Autonomous Vehicles, Drones, Machine Learning and AI (Artificial Intelligence), Quantum Computing, Robotics, Smart Sensors.
Life Sciences and Healthcare Solutions (including but not limited to): Biotech, Diagnostics, Digital Health, Disease Management, Public Health, Medical Devices, Personalized Medicine, Pharma, Prevention, Therapeutics.
Digital Enterprise (including but not limited to): Big Data, blockchain, Cloud & Edge Computing, Enterpsie Software, Fintech, Internet of Things, Media & Advertising, Saas, Supply Chain/Logistics, Workforce
Consumer Products and Services (including but not limited to): Analytics, Consumer Web, Education/EdTech, Gaming, Information Security, Mobile, Personal Devices, Social Impact, Subscription Services, Wearables.
There will be an intense, immersive experience over the course of three days for student startup founders to pitch to investors, receive multiple rounds of feedback, and advance their startup.
Also, there will be over $1.0 million in prizes, and all 42 startups that compete at Rice University in Houston are guaranteed to win cash prizes (if the event is held in-person).
Currently, the minimum cash prize is $500 for the in-person competition, and the grand prize winner receives a $350,000 investment (typically in the form of a convertible debt note, without geographic restrictions) in both an in-person event and a remote/virtual event.
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You are eligible to apply for Rice Business Plan competition if your startup;
- Is student-driven, student-created, and/or student-managed
- You have at least two current student founders or management team members, and at least one of those students is a current graduate degree-seeking student
- Are a college or university student anywhere in the world
- You haven’t raised more than $250,000 in equity capital prior to July 1, 2020
- Haven’t generated more than $100,000 in revenue prior to July 1, 2020
- You are seeking funding or capital (or will be in the next 12 months)
- Your startup is a potentially viable investment opportunity
2021 Rice Business Plan Competition Timeline
- Applications open online – October 12, 2020 at 8:00 AM CST
- Deadline for submission – February 2, 2021 at 11: 59 PM CST
- RBPC announces 42 teams to compete – February 23, 2021 at 12:30 PM CST
- Invited teams confirm commitment to compete via written confirmation – March 1, 2021 by 5:00 PM CST
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The deadline for application for the 2021 Rice Business Plan Competition is Tuesday, February 2, 2021, 11:59 PM CST. So, are you a student startup founder with an interest in the competition? Apply now using this link; https://rbpc.rice.edu/
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