News & Events

Throughout the 2019 Rhode Island Business Competition a number of free public events will be held to help applicants and potential applicants prepare to do their best. (Exact dates to be announced in August 2017.)

Date Event Description
Sept. 14, 2017
Launch of 2018 Competition
Former competitors will told how they have fared. Details.
Nov. 1, 2017
Rhode Island Elevator Pitch Contest
33 people pitched their ideas to a panel of judges, who gave immediate feedback. Details.
Dec. 6, 2017
Workshop: Define Your Business Idea
Business experts provided guidance on how to turn an idea into a business. Details.
Jan. 11, 2018
Workshop: Know Your Customer
Expert advice on figuring out who your customers are. Details.
Feb. 8, 2018 Workshop: Make Your Business Case
A business builder provided guidance on how to present your plan. Details.
March 8, 2018
Workshop: Win Over Investors
Seasoned investors told how to make a winning presentation. Details.
May 17, 2018 Awards Ceremony
Winners were announced at a public ceremony. Details.

RI Business Competition Alumni News


Our Alumni Are Achieving...and Thriving. See the video!

PowerDocks  – 2018 Entrepreneur Track Finalist

  • Won the 2018 Electric & Hybrid Marine Industry Innovation of the Year Award for its floating solar power supply dock.

goTeff  – 2018 Student Track Finalist

  • One of 40 teams, out of 100,000 applicants worldwide, to compete in the Hult International Business Prize Accelerator program

Tvar EdTech  – 2017 Student Track Winner 

  • Won $50,000 grand prize in the 2017 "Get Started Rhode Island" business pitch competition
Premama  2011 Student Track Winner

  • Hired VP of strategy and a controller.
  • Raised $4.6M. Actively raising more funds.
  • Launched in CVS and GNC stores nationwide in 2015. 
  • Its four products sell at CVS, GNC, Amazon, and
Response Technologies2016 Entrepreneur Track Winner 

  • Won SBIR award of $1M for using its technology to improve the U.S. military’s and federal government’s Willard Boat.
  • Won DoD Manufacturing Technology Innovation Award.
  • 3 full-time, 2 part-time employees.

Mighty Well2016 Student Track Winner

  • Won $250,000 in Babson Breakaway Challenge, to help scale the business in Rhode Island.
  • Hired 2 full-time, 2 part-time staff, 2 part-time consultants, and 5 interns.
  • Manufacturing with Pyramid Case Co in Olneyville, and hired McGarry&Sons to help build out a 5-piece capsule collection.
Newport Biodiesel   2010 Green Track Winner   Now a Competition sponsor!

  • Employing 35, and growing rapidly.
  • Now helping 3,000+ New England kitchens manage their cooking oil.
  • Producing and selling millions of gallons of biodiesel, derived from used cooking oil, annually.

Spotter    2017 Entrepreneur Track Semi-finalist

  • Expanded to San Francisco to open first West Coast branch.
  • Launched new spot acquisition platform Cash positive.
Siren Marine2012 Technology Award Winner

  • Sold more than 1,000 boat monitoring and tracking systems to date.
  • Raised $1.5 million in seed funding for development of next-generation products.
  • Signed deal with Vodafone to be Siren’s global cellular provider.
  • Launched second generation products in Q2 2017.
ShapeUp2007 Student Track Winner

  • Acquired in February 2016 by Virgin Pulse, part of Richard Branson's Virgin Group.

Social Enterprise Greenhouse2012 Entrepreneur Track Finalist – Now a Competition sponsor!

  • Launched its first food accelerator in February 2016.
  • Introduced its sixth cohort of Impact Accelerator program participants.
  • Cited as a key element in helping to make Providence a top startup market in the U.S.
StormTree2014 Entrepreneur Track Finalist Now a Competition sponsor!

  • Now selling nationally – California, Ohio, Indiana, Michigan.
  • Became an SBA-certified, woman-owned small business.

Maternova2011 Entrepreneur Track Finalist

  • Partnering with a team in Brazil to run a trial of the CRADLE vital signs monitoring device.
  • Partnering with Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation to introduce the Pratt Pouch to 40,000 HIV-positive mothers in Uganda.
  • Sending thousands of rapid schistosomiasis test kits to the Philippines to equip a Brown University team.
  • Partnering with a major humanitarian organization and sending thousands of rapid dengue test kits to their teams for the first time.
CompNet Insurance Solutions2014 Entrepreneur Track Winner

  • On track to write $5 million in premiums in 2017.
  • Launched a marketing partnership with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts.
  • Established partnerships with the Retail Association of Massachusetts, Retail Association of New Hampshire, Virginia Chamber Commerce, and National Payroll Services.
  • Signed partnership agreements with Psychogenics and another company that is a global leader in animal health care. 
XactSense  2016 Entrepreneur Track Finalist 

  • Raised $200K to launch pilot programs with major cell tower owners, carriers, and engineers in the U.S.
  • New prototypes and full working systems in use now.
  • 4 full-time employees.
NuLabel Technologies2009 Student Track Semi-finalist

  • Developed national partner network
  • Named a "Rising Star" by SBANE
  • Raised more than $5 million from investors.
ProThera Biologics  2010 Entrepreneur Track Winner

  • Established a key alliance for the manufacture of Inter-Alpha Inhibitor Protein (IAIP) with a world leading producer of plasma proteins for clinical use.
  • Completed two commercial development agreements to advance IAIP into clinical use.
  • Secured additional funding to sustain operations from SBIR grants and professional investors.
Splitwise2012 Entrepreneur Track Finalist

  • Named one of Top 100 Free Finance Apps on both iPhone and Android.
  • Launched a Spanish translation of its product.
  • Hired its seventh full-time employee.
Zapdot2007 Student Track Finalist

  • Collaborating with Pleasant Dreams, a Dutch game designer, that took the company to conferences, including PAX East in Boston, Boston FIG, PAX Prime in Seattle, and IndieCade in Los Angeles.
  • 5  full time employees.

American Ecotech2011 Green Winner

  • Completed developing the nation’s most advanced truly mobile 4WD air pollution monitoring vehicle.
  • Working on developing the world’s first environmental testing chamber that is able to mimic any ambient air environment and integrates references sensors in order to test small sensor technologies accurately.
  • Developed the first versatile data acquisition technologies deemed suitable for networking ambient air monitoring applications under $2,000.
Aten Energy Conservation2010 Green Semi-finalist

  • Since competing in 2010, Aten Energy Conservation has worked on more than 1,000 Rhode Island homes to make them more energy efficient.
  • Won U.S. Department of Energy and the US Environmental Protection Agency ENERGY STAR ‘Century Club Award’
  • Purchased a 7,200-square-foot facility moved operations to Pawtucket.
BioIntraface2009 Entrepreneur Track  Winner

  • Co-developed a medical device applicator for dispensing its coating technology to create a liquid wound dressing to combat infection.
The Compost Plant2015 Entrepreneur Track Finalist

  • Now serving as Rhode Island's first full-service commercial composting facility.

Dear Kate2009 Student Track Finalist

  • Was the focus of a high profile article in The New Yorker that detailed the ins and outs of doing photo shoots for women’s underwear.
Farsounder2002 Entrepreneur Track Winner

  • Authored an article on forward-looking sonar for Sea Technology.
  • Received a 2015 Tibbetts Award from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Grindz2014 Entrepreneur Track Semi-finalist

  • Signed a partnership/branding deal with Strider Sports International, Inc., the world’s premier manufacturer and marketer of efficient, no-pedal balance bikes for all ages and abilities.
  • Grindz’s protective pants named “a must have for anyone with active children” by
  • Grindz products called “cool protective gear for kids” by
Haverhill Incorporated2013 Entrepreneur Track Winner

  • Successfully raised funds via a Kickstarter campaign earlier this year to develop its 2015 fine jewelry collection.
  • Co-founders Haverhill Leach and Alison Cariati lauded for their business model in ltd blog.

Date Event
April 1, 2019 Applications due by 5 pm, Eastern time (U.S.)
April 8, 2019 Semi-finalists notified
April 16, 2019 Complete plans due from semi-finalists by noon
April 24, 2019 Semi-finalists make 5-minute presentation to judges; finalists selected
May 1, 2019 Finalists make 25-minute presentation to judges 
May 2019 Awards Ceremony where all finalists present and winners are announced. Exact date to be determined. Details.