The Global Innovation through Science and Technology (GIST) initiative is an intervention that seeks the participation of entrepreneurs and innovators in a multinational GIST Tech-I competition.
The announcement is dubbed an avenue, “Where Innovative Minds and Entrepreneurial Spirit Merge”. Submit Go-to-Market Plan: 2 minute Video Pitch & Executive Summary & Win. More than $200K will be awarded to successful applicants. To promote innovation and entrepreneurship it is essential to encourage and reward new ideas and excellence in new innovative efforts. The annual “GIST Tech-I” Competition is a regional contest focused on promoting new innovation and entrepreneurship in the Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Turkey regions. Through the competition the most creative ideas develop innovative solutions for problems critical to economic development from entrepreneurs will be promoted.
Innovation and Entrepreneurship Promotion
The release states that the competition will encourage technology entrepreneurs to launch and/or grow a company in those countries through: Startup funding; Training, networking opportunities and mentorship with successful entrepreneurs, angel investors and venture capitalists; and An invitation to the GIST Accelerator. Submission Deadline: September 24, 2012.
The initiative aims to establish stronger entrepreneurial culture to improve quality of life through economic prosperity. The GIST initiative builds entrepreneurial ecosystems in 43 countries across the Middle East, Central and South East Asia, and Africa by identifying, coaching, and funding the most promising entrepreneurs through its competitions, start-up acceleration services, online social media platform and interactive mentorship programs. The GIST Initiative is implemented by CRDF Global and funded by the U.S. Department of State.
Each applicant will upload an executive summary and a two-minute video pitch of their idea and judges will select the top 90 videos for the public to vote for online. The 30 semi-finalists who receive the most votes will be invited to the Entrepreneurship Workshop & Award Ceremony in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, in December 2012. Over the two-day program, semi-finalists will receive personalized coaching and mentorship from entrepreneurs and venture capitalists in order to give the best possible pitch to a panel of judges. Ten finalists will receive the first round of $70,000 in startup funding.
The top five finalists will participate in the first-ever GIST Accelerator program in the summer of 2013. Finalists will visit Silicon Valley for six weeks to receive additional training and mentorship and have the opportunity to network with potential collaborators and investors. The finalists will develop the tools and compete for the resources necessary to grow their company and increase their impact on the global market. At the end of the program, these entrepreneurs will present to the Investment Committee which will divide $200,000 among the most promising startups.
First Place: $25,000
Runner Up: $15,000
Second Place: $10,000
Third Place: $5,000
Best Female Entrepreneur Award: $5,000
5 Honorable Mentions: $2,000
iPad for applicant with most online votes for video
3 months of mentorship for 30 companies All 30 semi-finalists will be paired with U.S. and international mentors for business development and coaching
Up to 5 Scholarships to GIST Accelerator: GIST Accelerator: 6-Week startup immersion program in Silicon Valley
GIST Awards An Investment Committee will allocate $200,000 in seed funding awards to most promising companies
Competition Starts: July, 2012
GIST Webinars/Partner Trainings: August 13-31, 2012
Submission Deadline: September 24, 2012
Online Voting for Video: October 31, 2012 – November 9, 2012
Semi-Finalist Workshop & Award Ceremony: December 11-13, 2012
GIST Accelerator: August – September 2013
Method of Application
Apply now at: Visit the GIST Initiative website on the links below for rules, eligibility requirements and submission information.
Submissions will be accepted until September 24, 2012.