FastPitch Competition

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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.

Click on the link to download the registration form 2014_FastPitchCompetition_RegistrationForm (Word document). | Click here to read the event press release. |Click on the link to download the FastPitch Competition flyer. FastPitchFlyerGenPub2014

State of Ingenuity Grant FastPitch Regional Partners | FastPitch Competition Sponsors

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. All competitions will be listed on this page when dates are secured. The two additional competitions, representing four Wisconsin Counties, Rock | Walworth and Racine | Kenosha are facilitated by the following entities: 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.

Click here, FastPitchFlyerGenPub2014 for the 2015 FastPitch Competition flyer. Registration is typically available by early May. This page will be updated with links for full contest details and requirements for preparing your pitch. 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.

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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


GatewayTechnicalCollege.logo

FastPitch Competition Signature Sponsors


Contributing 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
• WilliamsMcCarthy
• Winnebago County

*Shark Tank, seen on ABCtv, is not affiliated with this competition.