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Driving Innovation and Growth
2014 Polsinelli Innovation Competition

Competition Opens:

Entry Deadline:

Entry Fee:

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Global Midwest Alliance and the Midwest Research University Network (MRUN) are pleased to invite you to participate in their 6th annual Polsinelli Innovation Competition, taking part during the Clean Technology Innovation, Growth and Globalization program on October 23, 2014, at the Union League Club in Chicago. The Polsinelli Innovation Competition finalists will be showcased during the Clean Technology Innovation Growth and Globalization program, which will focus on the Midwest's excellence in technology, clean technology innovation, products and services.

​January 30, 2014

July 25, 2014


Competition entries may include, but are not limited to, products, services and technologies in the areas of renewable and alternative energy, infrastructure and community, green building, food and agriculture, manufacturing, water products, logistics and sustainable distribution.

Submissions will be judged by a panel of experts representing regional universities, venture capitalists and business executives.  All finalists will receive recognition through conference print materials and the event website, and will be eligible to attend the September 10 Clean Technology Innovation, Growth and Globalization and Polsinelli Innovation Competition Awards program free of charge.  Additional finalists’ representatives will also be eligible to attend at a reduced registration rate. 

The top five competition finalists will have an opportunity to present their technology during the program on September 10 to an audience of early stage investors, entrepreneurs, clean tech-focused venture capitalists and financiers, and corporate R&D and business development executives.  

​We look forward to receiving your application this year.

The Polsinelli Innovation Competition was created to help emerging and venture ready clean tech companies gain visibility and make connections. The competition will provide a showcase for developers of new technologies that offer competitive returns for investors and customers while providing solutions to global challenges.  

Past Innovation Competition winners and finalists have gone on to compete and win in national and international competitions, received access to funding, gained beneficial partners for growth, and won new business opportunities.  We are proud that many of our past finalists are currently doing business on a global scale.

The companies featured in this competition are developing products and services which:

  • Promote the productive and responsible use of natural resources.
  • Reduce negative ecological impact.
  • Provide superior performance at lower costs.


  • Applicants must be focused in the clean tech space as described above.
  • Applicants should have a sound business plan.
  • Applicants should have ideally completed an initial or angel round of funding.
  • Companies presenting and/or sponsoring the October 23 Clean Technology Innovation, Growth and Globalization program are not eligible to participate.

  • To apply, please send a company profile (50-word maximum) and a non-confidential Executive Summary (two-page maximum length, including graphics and content) to  Applications must be received no later than July 25, 2014 (11:59 p.m. CST).
  • The Executive Summary must be in Word or pdf format and must be organized under the following headings: Company Name, Company Profile, Product/Technology, Market Opportunity, Sales and Marketing Strategy, Team/Founders, Investment Sought, Use of Proceeds, Main Contact and Presenter.
  • Finalists will be notified of acceptance by August 29, 2014.
  • There is no cost to apply or present at the October 23 program.
  • The competition judging panel reserves the right to disqualify submissions not adhering to the application requirements or to request resubmission in the event that application criteria are not met.
  • International applicants located outside of the USA will have the option to submit a video presentation instead of attending in person. These finalists will be notified and will need to arrange to submit their video prior to October 3, 2014.

For those finalists selected among the top five to present their company at the seminar, a presentation length of eight minutes will be strictly enforced. PowerPoint slides are allowed, with a six-slide maximum. Slides MUST be submitted no later than October 3, 2014. Presenters will have the opportunity to respond to audience questions following the presentations.

The Polsinelli Innovation Competition and Innovation, Growth and Globalization seminar will be held on October 23, 2014 at the Union League Club in Chicago. Additional information on the program will be available to all entrants. For additional information on competition sponsors, please access the links below.

About Our Sponsors
Serving corporations, institutions, entrepreneurs and individuals, our attorneys build enduring relationships by providing legal counsel informed by business insight to help clients achieve their objectives. This commitment to understanding our clients' businesses has helped us become the fastest growing law firm in the U.S. for the past five years, according to the leading legal business and law firm publication, The American Lawyer. Our more than 695 attorneys in 18 cities work with clients nationally to address the challenges of their roles in health care, financial services, real estate, life sciences and technology, energy and business litigation. The firm can be found online at

Midwest Research University Network
The Midwest Research University Network (MRUN) is a commercialization collaborative focused on fostering the formation and growth of high tech start-ups in the Midwest.  MRUN members include individuals engaged in venture formation at universities and research institutions, investors, entrepreneurs and those who help them.  All are either in, or interested in, the Midwest. The MRUN community helps members make connections informally to solve common problems in startup business development including, angel and seed–stage financing, placement of management talent and opportunities for collaboration.  MRUN is built around the idea that working together regionally in new business formation can accomplish more than working independently locally. For more information:
Left to Right: Polsinelli Innovation Competition Runner-Up Neil Kane of Altium Energy; Finalist Gary Klinefelter of Irrigeen; Finalist Robert Pricone of 10X Technology; Winner Rick Van Dyken of Global Green Products; and First Runner-Up Jim McSweeney of HE System Technologies.