MADISON – Experienced mentors from across Wisconsin will be
available to offer advice to contestants during the 12th annual Wisconsin Governor’s
Business Plan Contest.

Initial entries of 250 words are due by 5 p.m. Saturday,
Jan. 31, 2015. There is no cost to enter. Visit
for more information and to get started.

At any point during the competition, contestants may submit
their questions to veteran business mentors who have volunteered their time and
expertise to assist entrepreneurs who enter by Jan. 31. Mentors will respond
directly to contestants to offer one-on-one consultation.

This year’s
group of volunteers includes representatives from the Milwaukee-area Service
Corps of Retired Executives and the Center for Technology Commercialization.


With more than
70 members, SCORE’s Southeast Wisconsin chapter offers free business
consulting, business mentoring and business resources, plus low-cost business
trainings. The Center for Technology Commercialization provides support and
resources as companies bring their innovations to market, particularly with applications
for grants from the federal Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business
Technology Transfer programs.

In addition to access to mentors, contestants will receive
feedback from more than 70 judges as the contest progresses. The judges, from around
the state, the Upper Midwest and Silicon Valley, represent a cross-section of
disciplines that help define Wisconsin’s startup culture.

Since its inception in 2004, more than 2,900 entries have
been received and about $1.8 million in cash and in-kind services have been
awarded. Contest categories are advanced manufacturing, business services,
information technology and life sciences.

Past finalists have launched companies that have raised $160
million in angel, venture, grants and venture debt over time – all while
creating jobs and economic value for Wisconsin. Produced by the Wisconsin
Technology Council, the contest’s major sponsor is the Wisconsin Economic
Development Corp. Additional
sponsors to date include Aberdean; American Family Insurance; Exact Sciences;
Kollath & Associates; Madison Gas & Electric; Michael Best &
Friedrich; Nordic, UW-Madison Office of Corporate Relations; and Wisconsin
Technical College System.

To enter, become a judge or a sponsor, visit