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The MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition is designed to encourage students and researchers in the MIT community to act on their talent, ideas and energy to produce tomorrow's leading firms. Now in its 18th year, the Competition has awarded hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash and business startup services to outstanding teams of student entrepreneurs who submitted business plans for new ventures showing significant business potential. The refinement process of the Competition, its network of mentors, investors and potential partners, and the cash prizes awarded have helped many of these teams to act on their dreams and build their own companies and fortunes.

The MIT Entrepreneurship Competition provides teams who enter with valuable resources in the following areas crucial to successful entrepreneurship:

  • Networks of world-class entrepreneurs, investors, and potential partners
  • Mentorship by successful and seasoned professionals
  • Education in specific business planning skills as well as general entrepreneurial insight
  • Content rich feedback on their business model from world class entrepreneurs, investors, and professional service providers on our Judging Panel
  • Teambuilding opportunities to create a winning team of founders
  • Access to members of the private equity community
  • Broad media exposure and PR buzz

Students from all five schools at MIT (Sloan, Engineering, Science, Humanities, and Architecture) at the undergraduate and graduate levels have entered and been successful in the Competition. Multi-disciplinary teams that combine members from technical disciplines with members from the Sloan School have proven the most successful competitors. These teams bring together the pieces necessary for making the bridge between technology and the marketplace. Their business plans are judged by a panel of experienced entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and legal professionals.

Real Ideas, Real Companies....

As the world leader among university entrepreneurship competitions, the Competition has facilitated the birth of over 60 companies with an aggregate value of over $10.5 billion dollars. These companies have generated over 1800 jobs and received $175 million dollars in Venture Capital funding.

Many of these companies have been extremely successful. Some information on their achievements can be found in the press under our News Section. Recent IPOs have included Akamai (AKAM), net.Genesis(NTG), and C-Bridge Internet Solutions (CBIS). Recent acquisitions include Direct Hit (acquired by Ask Jeeves), Silicon Spice (by Broadcom), WebLine Communications (Cisco). Other success stories include Actuality Systems, Frictionless Commerce, SensAble Technologies, Stylus Innovation, Virtmed, and Virtual Ink. Other successful companies can be found under the Alumni Section.

History of the Competition

The MIT $100K was born in 1990 as a $10K Competition, when the MIT Entrepreneurs Club and the Sloan New Ventures Association teamed up to create a competition that would take advantage of the winning combination of engineers and business students. 54 teams competed in the first competition with the winner receiving $10K, and $3K and $2K going to the runners up. The original sponsors included the deans from the MIT Sloan School of Management and the School of Engineering as well as Thermo Electron and Price Waterhouse. The MIT $10K has run every year since its inception, and in 1996 it evolved into the $100K with $30K going to the winner and $10K each to two runners up. MIT’s competition is now the nation’s premier business plan competition teaching students how to turn their ideas into companies.