Startup302 is Delaware's premier funding competition for technology-enabled startups led by underrepresented founders.
Entrepreneurs from across the U.S. will compete for non-dilutive funding, access to mentors, and valuable connections.
Get notified when applications open!
All technology-enabled startups, with at least one founding team member from an underrepresented group are welcomed to apply for consideration. Considering the profile of Delaware’s ecosystem, those working in bioscience, chemistry, advanced materials, agriculture, and financial & business services, and esports are especially encouraged to participate.
Who is an underrepresented founder?
In the startup community, underrepresented founders are those in whom the venture capital industry as a whole underinvest, relative to the overall US population. For the purpose of this competition, we define underrepresented founders as women, black, Latinx and Native-American entrepreneurs. Across startup communities, these founders belong to demographic groups and identities which are vastly underrepresented in technology startup ownership and success stories.
The application window for Startup 302 opens January 2022.
Startup 302 involves two rounds - an application submission & evaluation round and a virtual final pitch round. Applications are reviewed by the Startup 302 organizing team and affiliated judges. There are no fees to apply.
Prizes will be awarded as grants, with certain awards having geographic restrictions. Startups will also benefit from engagement with community resources, sponsors, executives, and other key influencers. Previous finalists were awarded over $270k in prizes!
Delaware Innovator Awards, presented by the Delaware Division of Small Business, with support from the New Castle County Office of Economic Development - for startups located in Delaware or willing to locate in Delaware that show promise in establishment and growth in Delaware. Multiple winners will share $160,000 in grants.
Startup302 Blue Hen Prize, presented by Horn Entrepreneurship at the University of Delaware with support from JPMorgan Chase & Co., to advance equity thru entrepreneurship. Up to $30,000 will go to the most promising startup(s) led by a founding team that includes at least one principal/primary member who is affiliated with the University of Delaware.
Startup302 Open Innovation Award, presented by Delaware Prosperity Partnership, Delaware State University and JPMorgan Chase & Co. Up to $30,000 will be awarded for innovation by ventures with underrepresented founders that focus on, but aren’t restricted to, industries with a legacy in Delaware (bioscience, chemistry, advanced materials, agriculture or financial/business services) or the emerging field of esports.
Startup302 FinHealth Prize, supported by Discover Bank and offering up to $20,000 for fintech startups with the greatest potential to positively impact customer financial health through innovative product and service offerings.
Startup302 Innovation in Agriculture Prize, supported by FMC and offering up to $10,000 for innovation through the development and application of emerging technologies in agriculture.
Startup302 Innovation in Health Prize, supported by Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Delaware and offering up to $10,000 for innovation related to patient care and outcomes, health provider innovation or medical device or health insurance technology.
Startup302 Automation and Insights Prize, supported by Labware and offering up to $10,000 for the startup demonstrating the most compelling use of automation and data-driven insights to enhance productivity and value creation.
Startup 302 Prize for Best Science-Based Startup, supported by Delaware Innovation Space and offering up to $5,000 plus up to 10 hours of advisement or mentorship for startups in therapeutics, advanced materials, chemical ingredients, diagnostics, nutrition, industrial biotechnology, renewables, renewable energy, agriculture biotechnology and other science-based startups enabled by chemistry, material science and/or biotechnology.
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