Have a brilliant business idea, but aren't sure where to begin? THE CLIMB | Jake Jabs Center Business Plan Competition may be your next step toward entrepreneurial success.
THE CLIMB is a business development event series for collegiate startups based in Colorado. Hosted by the Jake Jabs Center for Entrepreneurship at the University of Colorado Denver, THE CLIMB is designed to help student entrepreneurs transform concepts into viable businesses through education, mentorship, networking and financial support. THE CLIMB celebrates 18 years of guiding entrepreneurial thinkers, empowering them to blaze their own trail and pushing them to reach their peak potential.
How It Works
Team Eligibility Requirements:
- At least one member of the team has to be a qualified/enrolled college student at
a Colorado university or community college.
- The startup must be a concept to under 2 years old. (Official Company Tax ID number is required to receive award money.) Total sales and revenues must be $0 to under $100,000.
- The concept being submitted cannot have received any seed/angel/venture capital (VC) funding before application deadline.
- Teams selected for Pitch Night are REQUIRED to have at least one team member physically present at Pitch Night.
- The six finalists chosen for Pitch Night will be REQUIRED to submit a full business plan (download template below).
- Winners must form an appropriate business entity, if they have not done so previously. Proof of business entity must be shown to the Jake Jabs Center team by this date in order to receive prize money.
- If you/your team applied for THE CLIMB in a previous year, you/your team can compete under the same concept/business as long as you did not make the top finalists pitch round (and meet the above qualifications). Teams that did apply and make the top finalists pitch round can compete again, BUT must submit a new concept/business (and meet the above qualifications).
- A complete online application submitted through ReviewR.
- A 60-90 second video pitch of business idea or existing startup.
- A 3-page executive summary. NEW: Include a one paragraph partner agreement.
- Applications are open – Deadline March 22nd. Incomplete applications and applications sent after the deadline will be automatically disqualified. There is NO application fee!
Why Should I Enter?
THE CLIMB gives aspiring student entrepreneurs the opportunity to connect with (and pitch to) some of the most successful entrepreneurs in the Rocky Mountain West. For those willing to make THE CLIMB, the benefits of participating include:
Kickoff Party | February 7th @ 5:30 – 7:00 PM
THE CLIMB | Business Plan Competition is back again this spring for all Colorado collegiate teams! Join us at our Kickoff Party to learn more about THE CLIMB and the Jake Jabs Center for Entrepreneurship. Need more team members on board or looking for a mentor to help you refine your business concept? You’ll also be able to network with fellow students, CU Denver alumni and local entrepreneurs.
Validator | February 21st @ 6:00 – 7:30 PM
Join us at this Validator event to learn more about validating a business concept, and the best way to move forward with your idea. Meet with advisers and mentors to help with next steps you should take with your business.
Refinery | March 14th @ 6:00 – 7:30 PM
Join us for the Refinery event to learn more about the elevator pitch process, and how to create the best executive summary for investors. This event will have THE CLIMB alumni in attendance to help applicants polish elevator pitches, and prepare for submitting applications.
Spark Social | April 4th @ 6:00 – 7:30 PM RSVP HERE
Are you looking for a place to meet with like-minded, entrepreneurial individuals in hopes of bringing your startup to the next level? Come network with CU Denver students and alumni, THE CLIMB alumni and local entrepreneurs at our Spark Social Happy Hour to see what ideas might “ignite!”
Practice Pitches | April 11th @ 6:30 – 9:30 PM – Invite Only
THE CLIMB finalists will practice their pitches to MP’s night class to obtain feedback before Pitch Night on April 25th. They will have a week to refine their pitches and presentations, which will be due to the Jabs Team the following week.
Pitch Night | April 25th @ 6:00 – 8:00 PM RSVP HERE
At Pitch Night, six finalists will present their business ideas to a panel of judges in hopes of winning cash prizes. Come hear the teams’ innovative concepts, connect with the Denver and CU Denver entrepreneurial communities, and find out who wins THE CLIMB. You don’t want to miss out on the most exciting event of the series!
Sponsor THE CLIMB!
Our Business Plan Competition exists due to the amazing support (via both monetary and in-kind contributions) we’ve received from our sponsors.
By sponsoring THE CLIMB, you can help students and aspiring entrepreneurs contribute to our growing startup and business community. With cash and in-kind prizes, we want to give competitors the financial and professional support they need to jumpstart their business ideas.
If you or your company is interested in sponsoring THE CLIMB for Spring 2019, please contact Assistant Director Sarah Engel at 303-515-8503 or email@example.com.
- Platinum Sponsor: $5,000
- Gold Sponsor: $2,500
- Silver Sponsor: $1,500
- Bronze Sponsor: $1,000
- In-Kind Donations (i.e. mentorship hours, incubation space, etc.)