Jan 21 2014

Enter 2014 North of Boston Business Plan Competition

by Dale Earl

Are you a new, emerging or growing company located in Essex County or Merrimack Valley? We are looking for companies to enter the tenth annual North of Boston Business Plan Competition.

The North of Boston Business Plan Competition has a new, 21st century format! The 25- to 30-page business plan is gone! In its place is a new format that recognizes that the success of a business plan depends equally on the quality of the plan and the people who will execute it.

To  help start the process, you may want to consider attending the following programs:

Wed., Jan. 22: “Business Plan Competition Informational Session” — 8:30 to 9:30 am

Wed. Jan. 28: Special Workshop on “How to Write a Competitive Executive Summary and Make an Effective Presentation” – 8:30 to 10:30 am

Here’s the new format:
1. Every participant completes an Entry Form
2. Every participant completes a Participant Agreement
3. Each submits a two- to five-page Executive Summary
4. Each submits three to five pages of Financials
5. Each submits a one-minute video
We are proud to co-sponsor the competition because we think it is a wonderful opportunity for startup and growing companies in Essex County and Merrimack Valley (or those who want to locate in Essex County & Merrimack Valley) to gain funding and visibility.

All of the information you need about eligibility requirements and the rules of competition may be found at

2014 North of Boston Business Plan Competition Eligibility Requirements
The requirements for the competition are that the:
1. Startups (including not yet operational) less than 3 years old may apply and early stage growth businesses may apply.
2. Growth companies may be older than 3 years but developing growth through a new product, service line, expansion or implementing a new strategic plan. Growth trajectory MUST be clear to be eligible.
3. Applicants must be located in the North of Boston/Merrimack Valley or must relocate to the area.
4. If the plan is for a startup business, that business must commit to locating in the North of Boston/Merrimack Valley.
5. Businesses with existing professional venture investment are not eligible.
6. Any non-venture funded Business is eligible.
7. Business must have plans to grow by at least 5 full time or FTE employees in addition to the founder(s) or existing workforce within three years .
8. Non-profit organizations are ineligible.
9. Your business idea must be original work that you’ll be able to fully disclose.
Business Plan (Entry Form, Participant Agreement, Executive Summary, Financial and Video are due electronically by 5:00pm EST on Friday, February 28, 2014. No exceptions.

The 1st place winner will receive a $5,000 cash prize, 2nd place winner will receive $3,000 and 3rd winner place will receive $2,000. A big bonus is that the judges are early stage, venture and bank investors. Your plan will be read by people to whom you would normally not have access.

Go to –

And if this message is not right for your company, think of who you know—colleagues, friends, neighbors or relatives who might qualify and please pass this message on to them. The North Shore is a great place to start and run a growth business and we need your help, particularly in this difficult economic time.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Laura Swanson at Click here to start an email or call (978)542-7031.

Laura DeToma Swanson
Chief Operating Officer
Enterprise Center at Salem State University
121 Loring Avenue
Salem, MA 01970
(Tel): 978-542-7031
(Fax): 978-542-7061
Click here to start an email

Leave a Reply