The popular LaunchKC grants competition is back for more and is now accepting applications.
LaunchKC — which attracted nearly 500 applicants in its inaugural 2015 competition — dishes out 10, $50,000 non-dilutive grants to tech entrepreneurs from around the globe.
“We are searching for the best and brightest startups or early stage technology businesses to apply and compete for $500,000 in grants,” said Drew Solomon, who leads the grants competition for the LaunchKC initiative. “We want to help these entrepreneurs make their business dreams come true in Kansas City, Missouri.”
In addition to a $50,000 grant, a winning entrepreneur receives other benefits, including free office space for one year; industry-specific mentors; and professional services, including legal, financial, marketing and more. The nonprofit organization announced the 2015 winners of the grants during the first Techweek Kansas City.
LaunchKC traveled to Austin, Texas, in March to promote the competition at South by Southwest (SXSW). Solomon said LaunchKC’s presence at the tech conference in 2015 attracted dozens of applicants.
The program on Monday received kudos during Kansas City Mayor Sly James’ State of the City address as being a top local resource for entrepreneurs.
“We strongly support programs like LaunchKC,” James said. “Last year, the first ten LaunchKC recipients received a half million dollars — $50,000 dollars each — by winning a business competition that drew applicants from around the world. And we’re not stopping. Applications for 2016 will be accepted beginning this Friday. We look forward to Techweek in September when 10 more grants will be awarded.”
Winners of the 2015 LaunchKC grants were: Blooom, Integrated Roadways, KC Drone Company, Nodal Security, Health ID, PopBookings, Pycno, SquareOffs, Vertisense and VideoFizz.
Here are some important LaunchKC dates to remember:
- Applications close at midnight, Wednesday, July 6
- A panel of experts begin immediately reviewing applications
- Applicants are narrowed down to 20 finalists by Friday, Aug. 19
- LaunchKC judging at Techweek Kansas City will be on Sept. 15 and 16