The deadline to participate in TiEQuest ’09, an annual Toronto-based business venture competition organized by TiE Toronto, is fast approaching on this Friday, Jan 30th. With the contest offering over $150,000 in prizes and an opportunity to win up to $1 million of investment from sponsoring venture capital and private equity funds, this is an incredible opportunity for entrepreneurs, especially in Ontario (note: contest is open to participants across North America). Past winners have also gone on to receive additional funding from various sources.
Winner of TiEQuest 2009 will receive the Ontario Entrepreneurship Trophy from the Ministry of Small Business and Consumer Services of Ontario. Apart from the cash prizes, various in-kind services from business, legal and financial firms will be awarded to the winners as well. In addition, a New Entrepreneur Prize of $5000 will be given to the best student team.
Contestants will get an opportunity to present to well-known angel investors, venture capitalists and fund managers. In addition, the contest will also provide entrepreneurs with various tools to help them in developing a promising business venture with various mentoring workshops and presentations on preparing elevator pitches, business plans, among other tips.
This is what some of the past winners and contestants have had to say about TiEQuest:
“After winning in TiEQuest, CertoLabs has raised over $500,000 of funding. The company is currently negotiating with investors to expedite the commercialization process.” – Ameer Taha of CertoLabs Inc. Winner of TiEQuest 2006
“As a result of TiEQuest, Chide.it has formed many strategic partnerships, received invaluable feedback with regards to its business plan and gotten funding. Since TiEQuest, Chide.it has grown 4 to 12 team members and from no revenue to multiple streams of revenue.” – Aydin Mirzaee of Chide.it Inc.
“Liquid Fiber Displays has so far received over $250,000 of financing and grants. We are currently negotiating about $7 million of venture funding. We are confident of raising this financing due to network of investors following our winning TiEQuest” – Nimesh Bahl of Liquid Fiber Displays Inc. Winner of TiEQuest 2008
“The winning of TiEQuest helped us gain attention from VCs within Canada and the US, and some private equity was (also) offered to us. TiEQuest competition and experience was a tremendous one, and it was instrumental in helping us advance our team, the product and the technology.” – Sunny Bhasin of Gradecast, Winner of TiEQuest 2005.
“I highly recommend any startup company to join the TiEQuest competition. For me, it was a learning experience in business, as I gained lessons that I will keep with me for the rest of my life. More so than the prizes and the competition itself, I have made friends who are like-minded and have connected with a vast array of resources that will help my venture to grow. I am proud to be part of the network of people associated with TiEQuest.” – Omar Lalani of Navi C Limited, Third Place Winner of TiEQuest 2007
The prizes, recognition, experience and the sheer networking opportunity on offer through this contest are an amazing chance for budding entrepreneurs to propel their ideas and ventures to the next stage. There is a $100 team entry fee to participate, with the deadline to submit the entry form being on Jan 30th, 2009 (Register here). Visit www.tiequest.org for additional information on the competition, rules, stages and requirements.