Fort Collins Startup Week Draws Global Leaders, National Sponsors and Largest Pitch Prize in the Nation

Fort Collins Startup Week, slated for May 20-25, 2014, is bringing in the heavy hitters and cash resources to match and to make significant, positive economic change for one of the nations leading, yet lesser known innovation hubs, Fort Collins, Colorado.The event co-chaired and produced by Launch Haus, a local venture catalyst firm, kicks off the week with the well-known futurist and five-time author, Gerd Leonhard. General Admission tickets for FCSW are available at no charge at


“Colorado has a reputation as a hub for innovation because of its world-class universities, thriving entrepreneurial community, and pioneering spirit. It comes as no surprise that the Colorado State University, Blue Ocean Challenge and Fort Collins Startup Week are able to coordinate a series of ‘firsts’ for Fort Collins and Front Range entrepreneurs,” stated U.S.Senator Michael Bennet “It’s this type of leadership and competitiveness that define in the 21st century economy for Coloradans.”The event, on the heels of Boulder Startup Week, is in the right place at the right time according to the 2013 study by the Kauffman Foundation, which named Fort Collins number 2 of its Top 10 Metro Areas for High Tech Startup Density.

“Fort Collins Startup Week is the ideal event leading up to our inaugural CSU Blue Ocean Enterprises Challenge that has a $250,000 grand prize for the first place winner,” said  Charisse Bowen, co-director of the CSU Blue Ocean Enterprises Challenge. “FCSW is rolling out the most perfect welcome party for our finalists coming from across the country who exemplify the entrepreneurial passions and game changing ideas that are driving our growing economy.”

“Fort Collins Startup Week is grateful for the amazing outpouring of support from our Front Range community and sponsors” said Chris J Snook, Organizing Chair and Co-Founder of Launch Haus. “We’re grateful to stay in lockstep with the City of Fort Collins, The State of Colorado, CSU and of course the Blue Ocean Enterprises Challenge for their significant contribution.”

To preview some of the FoCo planned events and workshops for the week,
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The Blue Ocean Enterprises Challenge is the richest business pitch competition in Colorado, with a grand prize of $250,000 plus a year’s worth of business mentoring. Presented by the Colorado State University College of Business and Blue Ocean Enterprises, the competition is a celebration of innovation, leadership development, and job creation. The Blue Ocean Enterprises Challenge is open to collegiate entrepreneurs throughout Colorado – who compete for a top prize of $20,000 — as well as startups and existing companies anywhere in the world seeking funding and business mentoring. More information is available at