The competition seeks out the world’s most revolutionary smart city and smart grid technologies by bringing the brightest entrepreneurs together with mission-driven investors, policy leaders, and corporate sponsors for a prestigious pitch competition in New York City. Two winners get $50,000 and the opportunity to grow their businesses into successful ventures in New York City’s longest-running cleantech business incubation program, ACRE, housed in the Urban Future Lab in Downtown Brooklyn.
The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), New York community Trust, and Con Edison are providing support for the competition.
“The Urban Future Prize Competition is an excellent vehicle for startups in the clean energy, smart city, and smart grid space to scale up and get funding,” said Pat Sapinsley, managing director of cleantech initiatives at NYU Tandon. “The winners will not only each be given a $50,000 grant funded by the New York Community Trust, but acceptance into our incubator, which entitles them to apply for as many as three $100,000 NYSERDA Ignition Grants. The help that our incubator has given to companies in the past has resulted in over $350 million in funding and in a 90 percent survival rate for our startups — a phenomenal success rate compared to the national average.”
“Helping cities become environmentally sustainable and more resilient are heavy lifts, but the dynamic entrepreneurs that compete for these prizes are clearly up to the challenge,” said Arturo Garcia-Costas, environmental program officer at the New York Community Trust. “Their innovations could help shape the future of the Big Apple.”
The non-dilutive, non-equity, cash prizes will be awarded to the top companies in each of the competition’s two categories: the New York Community Trust Smart City track and the New York Community Trust Smart Grid track. Applications to the Smart City track should pertain to urban infrastructure and resiliency, Internet of Things, sensor networks, analytics, and related themes. Applications to the Smart Grid track should pertain to renewable energy, energy efficiency, grid modernization, distributed generation, microgrids, and can include other solutions – even financing.
In joining the ACRE incubator at the Urban Future Lab, winners gain unprecedented access to the competition’s strategic partners and corporate sponsors, as well as the opportunity to establish pilot demonstration projects with those organizations on the forefront of New York State’s nation-leading energy strategy, Reforming the Energy Vision (REV), Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s strategy to build a clean, resilient, and affordable energy system for all New Yorkers.
Applications to the Urban Future Prize Competition are open until Jan. 4, 2019. For more information and to apply, visit urbanfuturecompetition.com.