Pre-judging will take place in November and December to select the top five (5) finalists for on-site judging for the Ignite Award.
Judging will take place during the conference in the Innovation AveNEW area of the Exhibition. A panel of judges will visit the booths and meet with each company’s representative. There must always be AT LEAST ONE person at the booth during the judging period who can discuss the company’s mission with the judges.
The competing companies will also provide a brief presentation in the Ignite Theater for inclusion in the judging.
- Was the company representative able to speak to the product/technology comfortably and clearly?
- Was the marketing, web/social media presence clear and evident?
- Did the company have flyers, handouts?
- Could the product or service be clearly demonstrated?
Presentation (in Exhibition Theater)
- Did the company representative explain the key concept(s) well?
- Did the company representative provide the correct amount of background information so that the audience could understand the trajectory of the company from inception?
- Is the market potential evident (extreme niche/niche/moderate/large)?
- Does the company have a clear competitive advantage and is the product/technology significantly better than currently available or potentially competing technologies?
- Is the proposed product/technology highly innovative?
- Does the product/technology have the potential to address a currently unmet need?
- Where does next round of funding come from, or is it projected to generate income?
- Is there a plan for growth, expansion or sale?
- Is the company leadership a balance of business and science professionals?
The judging panel’s decision will be based on a series of criteria (in no order of significance) evaluated through presentations at the company’s booth and in the Exhibition Theater:
- Marketing presence
- Compelling message and market opportunity
- Competitive advantage
- Level of innovation
- Addresses an unmet need
- Funding sources, plan for growth
- Leadership stability and diversity
5-to-1 Rating Scale:
5 — Outstanding, Novel and Broad Impact for a New Product
4 — Very Good, Solid, Novel Product
3 — Some Unique New Product Qualities
2 — Needs More Proof and Development
1 — Not Substantially New or Improved