I've already started up my business. Can I submit an entry?
Yes. We accept business plans from start-ups that are still looking for capital, or existing businesses that have a plan for some substantial expansion.
Can I apply if the financial grant/investment/loan is the only expected source of funding for my venture or expansion plan?
Yes, though preference will be given to those ventures that factor in and pursue additional sources of funding.
What resources can help me learn more about building a gospel-centered organization?
There are an increasing number of resources, both from Christian and mainstream sources, that are listed on our resources page.
I have security or confidentiality requirements. What do I do?
We understand that a number of business plans will have concerns about security or intellectual property. Please be as forthright as you would be to a potential major investor, but note any constraints you have. These judges are largely marketplace professionals who regularly deal with confidential information in the course of their work. We have asked them to treat your work product with the same care and respect for confidentiality. We also ask them to remove themselves from judging your plan if they do have a real conflict of interest.
Feel free to mark your plan—or particular piece of it—as "confidential." and to request that the judges give you the hard copy of your plan back after you've completed your presentation. Note that the short description of your idea which you include with your entry form may be used in public documentation relating to the contest.
It is your responsibility to protect your intellectual property. Before submitting your plan, we urge you to evaluate with advisors or legal counsel your need to protect your property, and to do so if appropriate (patent filings, copyright notices, etc.). Only finalists will be presenting to a larger audience.
What if my friend is really eager to participate in the competition with me, but is not a Christian?
Experience from the field indicates that Kingdom-oriented Christians are required in critical decision-making positions in order to direct the business toward Kingdom ends, though that does not preclude non-Christians from serving on a senior management team. We need to know that a business plan is committed to a Kingdom vision from the start. One way we check that is by asking all finalist team members to sign the Statement of Agreement to our Core Values.
At this stage, if someone on your team is not Christian, we still encourage that person to actively participate. If someone is not a Christian and is in full support of the objectives of this business plan competition, this could be a great conversation starter: what barriers or challenges face your friend in trusting Jesus with his or her life, if the vision is already compelling?