Invest Southwest opens entry to Venture Madness pitch competition


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Invest Southwest, a nonprofit committed to helping regional startups succeed since 1992, announced last week that interested parties may now apply for their annual Venture Madness pitch competition.

Venture Madness, presented in partnership with the Arizona Commerce Authority, will feature 24 promising startups competing to win a large sum. Each of the four category winner will win $10,000, with the grand prize winner taking home an extra $10,000. The categories are: software as a service launch, software as a service scale, hardware tech and deep tech.

The competition is shaking up its operations from previous years. Instead of spanning three days, this year’s event will be a “one-day format featuring a fast-paced, live pitch competition to find the most promising technology companies in the Southwest,” according to a press release.

“Venture Madness has become an annual tradition that the entrepreneurial and investment communities look forward to,” said Nate Mortensen, Invest Southwest’s 2018 chair, in a press release. “We’re excited about the changes this year and anticipate a valuable event with more opportunities for startups and investors to connect, build relationships, and learn.”

The event begins with a networking reception on the evening of Jan. 29, and the competition takes place on Jan. 30 at Galvanize Phoenix.

Entries for the competition opened on Oct. 26 and close on Nov. 30 at 3pm MST. Six finalists from each category will be chosen to participate in the live competition, and winners will be chosen immediately. Then all winners will present a second time to fight for the grand prize.

Startups planning to enter can apply here.

Jessica Swarner

Author: Jessica Swarner

Jessica is a recent graduate of ASU where she studied political science and journalism. She is currently a researcher at a local cybersecurity company. Her hobbies include reading up on hacker forums on Tor and giving unsolicited podcast recommendations.

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