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Challenges

Grant Funding

Lever Challenges offer $25,000 awards in non-dilutive grant funding to early stage companies through its Challenge programs. Lever specifies qualifying business verticals such as advanced manufacturing or health technology. Lever selects finalists, helps ready them for a juried pitch competition, and then supports the winning team during an incubation phase and beyond.

The Berkshire Sustainability Challenge

Clean Energy & Clean Water

The Berkshire Sustainability Challenge will provide equity-free seed funding for the startup that presents the most scalable business model in the clean energy or clean water industries.

Applications Due: January 26
Workshop 1: March 21
Workshop 2: April 18
Workshop 3: May 16
Final Pitch Competition: June 4

Berkshire Health Technology Challenge

The Berkshire Health Technology Challenge (BHTC) will provide equity-free seed funding for the startup that presents the most scalable and investable healthcare products or services. The purpose of this challenge is to attract and support entrepreneurs with a scalable innovation in health technology.

Application Period: November 1
Applications Due: January 26
Workshop 1: March 21
Workshop 2: April 18
Workshop 3: May 16
Final Pitch Competition: June 4

Berkshire Manufacturing Challenge

The Berkshire Manufacturing Innovation Challenge (BMIC) will provide equity-free seed funding for the startup that presents the most scalable and investable manufacturing business model that will yield products or services that may be utilized in the life sciences.

Application Open: August 1
Applications Due: October 27
Workshop 1: December 7
Workshop 2: January 11
Workshop 3: February 8
Final Pitch Competition: February 27

Intrapreneur Challenge

The Intrapreneur Challenge is a competition that promotes innovation within Berkshire County. A $25,000 grant is awarded to the Berkshire enterprise with the most compelling new product or service that drives sustainable growth for the company and region.

LTI Smart Glass won the 2019 Intrapreneur Challenge with their innovative bullet-rated windows resistant to delamination for the U.S. military. Window delamination reduces visibility and is a leading reason that military vehicles are removed from service. Production at LTI’s Pittsfield plant is scheduled to begin during the second quarter of 2020. The company forecasts adding up to 120 new jobs to support full production at its Pittsfield facility by 2025.

If you are a Berkshire County enterprise, and would like to learn more, please email Brent Filson, Lever’s Head of Innovation, at bfilson@leverinc.org.

The Berkshire Sustainability Challenge

Clean Energy & Clean Water

The Berkshire Sustainability Challenge will provide equity-free seed funding for the startup that presents the most scalable and investable manufacturing business model that will yield products or services that may be utilized in the life sciences.

Applications Due: January 26
Workshop 1: March 21
Workshop 2: April 18
Workshop 3: May 16
Final Pitch Competition: June 4

Berkshire Health Technology Challenge

The Berkshire Health Technology Challenge (BHTC) will provide equity-free seed funding for the startup that presents the most scalable and investable healthcare products or services. The purpose of this challenge is to attract and support entrepreneurs with a scalable innovation in health technology.

Application Period: November 1
Applications Due: January 26
Workshop 1: March 21
Workshop 2: April 18
Workshop 3: May 16
Final Pitch Competition: June 4

Berkshire Manufacturing Challenge

The Berkshire Manufacturing Innovation Challenge (BMIC) will provide equity-free seed funding for the startup that presents the most scalable and investable manufacturing business model that will yield products or services that may be utilized in the life sciences.

Application Open: August 1
Applications Due: October 27
Workshop 1: December 7
Workshop 2: January 11
Workshop 3: February 8
Final Pitch Competition: February 27

Intrapreneur Challenge

The Intrapreneur Challenge is a competition that promotes innovation within Berkshire County. A $25,000 grant is awarded to the Berkshire enterprise with the most compelling new product or service that drives sustainable growth for the company and region.

LTI Smart Glass won the 2019 Intrapreneur Challenge with their innovative bullet-rated windows resistant to delamination for the U.S. military. Window delamination reduces visibility and is a leading reason that military vehicles are removed from service. Production at LTI’s Pittsfield plant is scheduled to begin during the second quarter of 2020. The company forecasts adding up to 120 new jobs to support full production at its Pittsfield facility by 2025.

If you are a Berkshire County enterprise, and would like to learn more, please email Brent Filson, Lever’s Head of Innovation, at bfilson@leverinc.org.

Typical Challenge Timeline

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