Application window opens for 2020 GrowNY
The 2020 Grow-NY business competition is accepting submissions, officials at Empire State Development said.
Grow-NY is in the second year of its three-year initiative and focuses on enhancing the emerging food and agriculture innovation cluster in Central New York, the Finger Lakes and the Southern Tier regions. The competition attracts high-growth food and agriculture startups from around the world and across the state to the Grow-NY region where they compete for a combined total of $3 million in prize money.
Applications will be accepted through July 15. Up to 20 finalists will be selected from the applicants.
“In this unprecedented time, it is more important than ever to continue the programs that leverage New York State’s great assets to grow our economy,” said Eric Gertler, acting commissioner and president and CEO designate of Empire State Development. “The Grow-NY competition is attracting startup innovation that will support job creation and the further development of our state’s food, beverage and agriculture industries.”
The selected finalists will receive dedicated mentorship from a hand-selected business advisor; marketing promotion and publicity support for their startup; an expenses-paid, three-day business development trip to the Grow-NY region for up to two finalists per team; and introductions to potential investors among other things. The competition is administered by Cornell University through its Center for Regional Economic Advancement.
Beginning in August 2020, selected teams will enter into a mentoring and business development phase that will run from September to November. Finalists will pitch their ideas and business plans at the Grow-NY Food and Ag Summit, a public symposium and industry forum, on November 17 and 18 at a soon to be announced location in Syracuse, NY. One team will be awarded the top prize of $1 million; two $500,000 prizes and four $250,000 prizes will also be awarded.
Empire State Development is funding the competition through its Upstate Revitalization Initiative connected with the three regions— CNY Rising, Finger Lakes Forward and Southern Tier Soaring. Winners will be required to create a positive impact in the Grow-NY region by growing job opportunities, connecting with local industry partners and contributing to a thriving Upstate economy.