We’re Shark Tank* without the bite!
Open with a hook that grabs attention. Deliver your pitch with energy and passion. Answer six key questions and hit it out of the park!
Save the 2015 FastPitch Competition date | Wednesday, June 17 | NIU Rockford
Who: Passionate entrepreneurs in all phases of business, including startup, pre-startup or idea stage. High school seniors and college-age students welcome
When: Wednesday, June 17, 2015 | 3:30 p.m. Initial Presentations | 5:30 p.m. Final Presentations | Open to the Public
Deadline for FastPitch participants to submit their business pitches in writing for pre-qualification is Wednesday, June 3; accepted participants will be notified by Friday, June 5.
Where: NIU Rockford, 8500 East State Street, Rockford, IL
Why: To win cash prizes, feedback and exposure! With a top prize of $5,000 at stake, it will be well-worth three minutes of your time! In addition to our traditional first, second and third places prizes, there will also be a CleanTech prize totaling $500.
CleanTech is Defined: Companies that seek to increase performance, productivity, and efficiency by minimizing negative effects on the environment.
The FastPitch Competition is an annual event that draws participants from throughout the region. Starting in 2006, this competition has attracted entrepreneurs in all phases of business from pre-startup, just an idea on a napkin to companies that have been in business or plan to expand with a new service or product. The idea is to answer six key questions (see below) in three minutes or less—your elevator speech—to a select group of judges who are entrepreneurs themselves or that work with entrepreneurs on a regular basis. In business, “three strikes” is generous. If you can’t pitch your product, service or concept in three minutes—you’re outta there!
The FastPitch Competition is your chance to prove the potential of your business idea…meet people who can help you succeed…maybe even win a cash prize! This is no field of dreams: traditionally the top prize that’s awarded is $5,000. All competitors will receive constructive feedback, a fun experience and valuable exposure to investors, business leaders, potential mentors and media.
FastPitch is regional in scope. In 2012, it was expanded to include two locations in Wisconsin; partners in the State of Ingenuity Grant. Currently there is only one additional competition. The additional competition, representing two Wisconsin Counties, Racine and Kenosha, are facilitated by the following entities: NIU EIGERlab, Kenosha Area Business Alliance, Launch Box, Racine County Economic Development Corporation, Rock County 5.0, State of Ingenuity, Walworth County Economic Development Alliance and UW-Whitewater.
Submit your pitch in writing (1,000 words or less) for pre-qualification to Sherry Pritz; verbal presentations only—no PowerPoints. Questions? Call 815.316.6357.
2014 FastPitch Competition Winners
First place-Tracie Burress | Product- sockTABs
Second place-Stacy McCaskill | Service-Fish With Me
Third place-Casey Bankord | Product-SlimBooks
Clean Tech Award-Robert Haney | Product-Electronic Anti-Freeze
Student Award-Erin Hughes | Product-Adjustable server
Click here to read the Rockford Register Star’s FastPitch Competition article
Wisconsin FastPitch Competition
Racine/Kenosha County Competition | August 19, 2015
FastPitch Regional Partners
FastPitch Competition Signature Sponsors
• Catalyst Business Solutions
• Centric Advisory Group
• City of Rockford
• Growth Dimensions of Belvidere and Boone County
• Leading Edge Hydraulics
• Northern Illinois Energy Summit & Expo
• Rock Valley College
• Rock Valley College’s Procurement Technical Assistance Center
• Rock Valley College’s Small Business Development Center
• Rockford Chamber of Commerce
• Rockford Local Development Corporation
• Stillman Bank
• Sjostrom Construction
• Winnebago County
*Shark Tank, seen on ABCtv, is not affiliated with this competition.