What is the CleanTech Challenge?
The CleanTech Challenge is a business plan competition that helps students form teams and develop their clean technology business ideas through a 3-staged competition. Participants receive guidance, feedback and mentorship from industry professionals throughout the competition. 10 finalist teams compete in live "Boot Camp" finals in London on April 26 and 27 for £10,000 in cash.
The Challenge has been hosted annually by London Business School (LBS) and University College London (UCL) since 2009.
What happens during the competition?
Stage 1: Initial Idea (through January 29, 2012)
Students, as individuals or teams, submit a 200-word description of their cleantech business idea. The ideas are reviewed by a panel of judges. Ideas that are novel, feasible, clearly-expressed, and have a signficant environmental impact advance to Stage 2.
Stage 2: Idea Development and Team Formation (through March 4, 2012)
Ideas that pass Stage 1 further develop their ideas and build strong cross-skilled teams. Teams answer specific questions using a presentation deck template that will provided to Stage 2 participants. Judges will want to understand what is new or different about your team, why its economically viable, and why your team is the right one to make it happen.
Stage 3: Boot Camp Finals at London Business School (Thursday and Friday, April 26 & 27, 2012)
10 finalist teams, including the winners of national competitions in Belgium, Italy and Holland, will come to London for a 2-day Boot Camp. Teams will get a "challenge" question, and be given 24 hours and 2 mentors from the industry to help them develop a 10 minute pitch to the judging panel. Judges will determine a winner using the same critiera -- novelty, feasiblity, significance of environmental-impact, and clarity, as well as team composition -- to award the £10,000 prize.
Throughout the 4 months
In London and any location with a Local Chapter President, participants can network and learn about cleantech and entrepreneurship through speaker events.
Who is eligible to participate?
Only current students are allowed to participate. We anticipate that students will be engaged in post-graduate study (e.g. Masters, PhD, MBA).
Participants must form teams of 2 to 5 students, with each team having a mix of business and technical/engineering/science backgrounds. During the initial stage, participants do not need to have a team already formed.
What do you mean by Clean Tech?
CleanTech represents a diverse range of products, services, and processes, including but extending well beyond renewable energy. We define it as "any business that has a significant and positive environmental impact." This includes business ideas that reduce:
- CO2 emissions
- Air, water or food pollution
- Destruction or consumption of natural resources
- Energy consumption
Example sectors include:
- Renewable energy
- Waste and water management
- Energy demand
A good list of sectors can be found at http://www.cleantech.com/what-is-cleantech/
How do I join?
First, join the mailing list.
Then, submit an idea (or many ideas!) during Stage 1, or join a team in between Stage 1 and Stage 2.