News & Events

Throughout the 2021 Rhode Island Business Competition a number of public events are held to help applicants and potential applicants prepare to do their best. 

Date Event Description
Sep. 24, 2020
2021 Competition Kicks Off

Former competitors will share their experiences and progress since participating. Virtual Event

Event Details

Oct. 15, 2020 Workshop: Perfecting Your Pitch

A prominent public speaking coach will present on how to make a memorable and impactful pitch. Virtual Event

Event DetaiLs

Nov. 19, 2020
Rhode Island Elevator Pitch Contest

Participants present their idea in 90 seconds to a panel of judges and get immediate feedback - and the chance to win cash prizes.

Event DetaiLs

Jan. 7, 2021
Workshop: Business Plan Development
Local professor of entrepreneurship provides attendees detailed information on how to write a compelling business plan that will appeal to investors.
Feb. 4, 2021 Workshop: Define the Customer
A panel of experienced entrepreneurs explain how to define a target market and the best way to promote your product or service.
Mar. 4, 2021
Workshop: Find Those Funds
Top business builders and investors provide valuable tips and insights on how to get early-stage funding.
May 6, 2021 Awards Ceremony
Finalists present to a public audience and the winners are announced.

RI Business Competition Alumni News


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

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.
  • Won $2 million Small Business Innovation Research Fast Track grant from the National Institutes of Health in June 2019 to study a new prognosis assessment test.

Tvar EdTech  – 2017 Student Track Winner 

  • Won $30,000 in the inaugural 2018 MassChallenge Rhode Island accelerator.
  • Won $25,000 grand prize in the 2017 Get Started Rhode Island business pitch competition.

TextUp     2018 Student Track Winner

  • Named a 2018 Tech10 Award winner in the Entrepreneur/Start-up category. 
  • Finalist in the 2018 Get Started Rhode Island pitch competition.
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
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.
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
Hannah Daye & Company – 2013 Entrepreneur Track Winner

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

Date Event
January 6, 2021 Application process is open for 2021 Competition.
March 29, 2021 Applications due by 5 pm, Eastern time (U.S.).
April 6, 2021 Semi-finalists notified.
April 13, 2021 Complete plans due from semi-finalists by noon.
April 20, 2021 Semi-finalists make 5-minute presentation to judges; finalists selected.
April 27, 2021 Finalists meet with judges. 
May 6, 2021 Awards Ceremony where all finalists present and winner is announced.