Rules and Eligibility
Requirements for each competition
|New Venture||Social Venture||Technology Venture|
|Sectors||All, except Consulting, Franchises, Real Estate Syndications||All including nonprofit but must have an earned revenue stream||Life Sciences, IT and Clean Tech|
|Exclusions||Existing ventures with sales over $250K; Existing ventures with $250K or more in outside financing.||Existing ventures with sales over $250K; Existing ventures with $250K or more in outside financing.|
|IP Requirements||None||None||Venture must be based on IP developed while working or studying at NYU.|
|Team Requirements||Must have at least 1 current NYU student or Stern alumnus.||Must have at least 1 current NYU student or Stern alumnus.||Must have at least 1 NYU student, researcher or faculty member.|
|Entry Fee per person||$150 alumni/$75students||$150 alumni/$75students||$150 alumni/$75students|
Who can compete?
Open to the NYU Community
Stern students (full-time, part-time, executive MBA and undergraduate), Stern alumni and NYU students are eligible to participate in the New Venture and Social Venture Competitions. All teams must include a Stern representative to compete.
1. To enter the New Venture Competition (the “Competition”), each team must have a currently enrolled NYU student or Stern alumnus as a member. The NYU/Stern team member must be (and remain) an active participant in the venture, meaning that the member plays a material and ongoing role in the day-to-day operations of the venture, as determined by the Berkley Center in its sole discretion. Strong evidence of active participation includes ownership in the aggregate of a minimum of 15% of the equity in the new venture, an ongoing position on the senior management team of the venture and a significant role in developing and presenting the venture concept throughout the Competition. The NYU/Stern team member must intend to occupy a leadership position for at least 2 years upon completion of the Competition.
2.Funding considerations: A team is ineligible to enter the Competition if it has received more than $250,000 in outside financing or institutional funding (e.g., venture capital, private equity, hedge funds, corporate funds, etc.).
3. Re-entrants: If a participant previously entered the Competition or any related Berkley Center competition, he/she may re-enter only with a substantially different venture idea, as determined by the Berkley Center in its sole discretion.
4. Multiple concepts: Individuals may enter more than one venture concept summary with permission of the Competition committee, but may not participate as a member of more than one team that has been selected to advance to the semi-final round.
5. Intellectual Property: Venture plans and presentation materials must be the original work of team members. Team members are responsible for ensuring that the venture owns or has the right to use any intellectual property included in its venture plans and presentation materials. Each team is also responsible for protecting the intellectual property of the venture, which will include having all principals, employees, consultants, and other involved persons sign an intellectual property assignment agreement and non-compete agreement reasonably acceptable to NYU.
6. Signature required: All venture concepts must be submitted to the Berkley Center with a signed Eligibility Statement that certifies adherence to these eligibility criteria and to the Competition Rules set forth below.
7. Awards: A prize of up to $75,000 will be awarded to teams selected by the Berkley Center judging panel based on the established criteria. Prizes will be distributed according to a series of milestones as defined by the Berkley Center in consultation with each winning venture and will be made payable to the company associated with each winning venture. Failure by a winning venture to satisfactorily meet set milestones as defined by the Berkley Center may result in a delay of payment of the prize money or could lead to the forfeiture of the prize money. Members of the winning teams must sign Terms of Acceptance on a form to be provided by the Berkley Center, which will, among other things, set forth the requirements for using, accounting for, and reporting the prize funds. The prize may only be used for legitimate business purposes to implement the business plan submitted by each winning venture and must be used and accounted for in accordance with the deadlines set forth in the Terms of Acceptance.
Note: Competition prizes are intended for plans that the judges believe can become operating businesses of significant economic scale. Teams attempting to start or expand a consultancy or advisory firm may enter the Competition but should be aware of the Competition committee’s bias against these endeavors.
Download a copy of the
Who can compete?
This is a competition for current NYU students, faculty or researchers. At least one current NYU student, faculty or researcher must be a member of the venture's founding management team. Others not currently affiliated with NYU (including NYU alumni) may be members of the venture's management team.
The current NYU team member must be an active participant in the venture, as determined by the competition committee. Strong evidence of active participation is ownership in the aggregate of a minimum of 15% of the equity in the venture, but other factors may override the absence of equity ownership. Entries must be the original work of entrants.
2. Funding considerations:
a. Prior Funding: A team is ineligible if it has received outside institutional funding (venture capital, private equity, hedge funds, corporate funds, etc). Teams must not have accepted any non-institutional funding in excess of $250,000 at any point prior to the completion of this contest. Non-institutional funding includes contests, grants, friends and family, bank loans, etc. where there is no equity ownership associated with the funding is permitted.
b. Revenue: A team is eligible if it has generated revenue in the 12 months prior to submitting its application.
3. Pre-existing Technology: Only businesses based upon pre-existing technologies may apply. Pre-existing technologies must be in a demonstrable proof-of-concept, prototype, alpha/beta or working finished product at the time of application for consideration in the competition.
4. University Owned Intellectual Property
Teams seeking to commercialize NYU owned intellectual property (IP) must contact the requisite NYU technology transfer office if you require a license from the University to the IP utilized in your business prior to submitting your application. In general, if the technology was developed under a research grant or if material use of University facilities (e.g., a laboratory) were used in the development of the technology, you may require a license from the University. Please consult the technology transfer office for further guidance and assistance.
5. Multiple ventures: Each team may enter one venture per competition and cannot enter the same venture in other Stern competitions. Each NYU student may only participate on one team.
6. Signature required: All teams must submit to the Berkley Center a signed Eligibility Statement that certifies adherence to the above rules.
7. Awards: Award money will be made payable to the venture. Members of the winning teams must sign a Prize Agreement. If the team is offered and accepts additional funding, teams will be required to execute additional documentation.
Download a copy of NYU Technology Venture Competition Eligibility Form.