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Forbes List of America’s Most Promising Companies
Entries currently open
Forbes wants to shine a light on high-growth, privately held companies with brilliant prospects. Forbes — with help from CB Insights’ Beacon software — has developed a methodology for picking promising companies. The best will appear on Forbes’ second annual list of America’s Most Promising Companies. See website for entry survey.
Intuit Collaboratory Challenge
Enter by May 1, 2011
To participate in Intuit’s open innovation challenges, visitors go to www.IntuitCollaboratory.com and respond to specific Intuit business needs, called “challenges,” and potentially win a cash reward plus an opportunity to enter into a pilot test with Intuit.
Two of the new challenges offer a $5,000 cash prize for the winning idea:
Make Mobile Payments Easy with QR Codes
Quick Response barcodes, those black-and-white matrices composed of tiny squares, are popping up in store windows and magazine ads everywhere. The challenge asks whether the average consumer could also benefit from receiving a bill or invoice information via a QR barcode, or perhaps pay it at the same time. The prize will go to an innovator who finds a way to allow consumers to instantly pay by simply scanning the QR code with their mobile device, and have both consumer and seller receive immediate confirmation of the payment.
Help Small Businesses Get Productive With iPad and Other Tablets
Tablet devices, such as iPads, present interesting possibilities for helping small businesses. The challenge is to come up with apps for tablets that can save time and/or money for small businesses on the go.
The Next Million Dollar Entrepreneur 
Enter by May 9, 2011
This contest is for those who want to grow the value of their businesses to $1,000,000.
The Grand Prize Winner will receive $5,000 in start-up funding and 1-year of business coaching. To enter please visit The Sleeping Giant Facebook page and click on the Contest Tab. From there describe “Why you are The Next Million Dollar Entrepreneur.” Entries must be submitted by May 9, 2011. From May 10 – May 16 voting will take place. The Top 10 contestants will be selected by the votes, and one lucky grand prize winner will be selected by The Sleeping Giant Author, Ken McElroy and his team. The Winner will be announced May 24, 2011 at 10am.
CRM Idol  
Enter by May 13, 2011
CRM companies compete to be named the CRM Idol! Forty eligible small CRM companies from North America and South America — and 20 from Europe, Africa, and Middle East — will be given the opportunity, first come first serve, to secure a time slot on a specific day that will put you in front of some of the most influential people in the CRM (customer relationship management) and social CRM world. You give a demo in front of 5 judges, and a review of your product will be published in multiple venues. It can be a good review, a bad one, a mix or indifferent. All 5 judges will have to sign off on the final review, and they promise to be opinionated and fair. Then the finalists will be chosen.
Each of the finalists will be required to do a 10-minute video. The community can then vote and along with the judges’ votes, a final CRM Idol for each region will be chosen. Entry is by email only: email@example.com . For updates follow #CRMidol on Twitter. Go here for CRM Idol eligibility requirements 
Facebook Big Break for Small Business
Enter by May 20, 2011
American Express OPEN is giving five small business owners the ultimate Big Break. You could win a trip to Facebook headquarters for a two-day, one-on-one business makeover and $20,ooo to help grow your business.
To enter the Facebook Big Break for Small Business from American Express OPEN, small business owners need to visit http://www.facebook.com/OPEN and submit answers to a short questionnaire describing how they would utilize the competition’s winnings to better their business.
2011 Small Business Awards
Enter by May 20, 2011
In its 6th year, The New York Enterprise Report Small Business Awards honors the achievements and accomplishments of the 500,000+ small businesses throughout the tri-state New York area. In addition to the Best of the Year Categories, the New York Enterprise Report Small Business Awards will honor nine small businesses for their accomplishments and best practices.
Build It Big
Enter by May 23, 2011
This is a new business development program by Springboard Enterprises, especially for Ohio-based, women-led companies seeking success strategies to help grow their businesses. The program is looking for companies that meet the following requirements:
- A woman in a key management position w/ significant equity ownership
- A qualified and profitable market opportunity w/competitive advantage
- A track record of milestone achievement, which may include: product development, distribution or licensing contracts, grants, beta clients, customers, revenue, etc.
- A favorable debt-to-equity ratio
- A credible core management team or ability to attract one
- An interest in and ability to grow the company beyond its current position
- Access to trusted advisors from Thompson Hine LLP, KeyBank, and Meaden & Moore in one-on-one advisory sessions to discuss appropriate strategies for growing their business
- Ongoing support from the Springboard network of industry experts, investors, and seasoned entrepreneurs
e-Cycle iPad2 Giveaway Contest 
Enter by May 31, 2011
To celebrate, e-Cycle has declared April “National Recycle Your Cell Phone Month” to help raise awareness for the growing e-waste problem with mobile devices, and as a reminder for organizations to implement responsible mobile phone recycling programs. As an incentive, e-Cycle is offering businesses and organizations a chance to win one of four Apple iPad2 tablets when they recycle and/or sell their used wireless devices with the company through May 31.
National Association for Moms in Business Grant Competition 
Enter starting March 1st, Competition runs May 1 – June 15, 2011
Business grant competition via crowdfunding to give mom entrepreneurs a better chance at launching a new or current business project. All participants win a half-page feature in Moms In Business Magazine, publicity on peerbackers.com and momsinbusinessgrant.com, and a $2,000 publicity toolkit from PRNewswire. When the crowdfunding competition ends, all grant applicants who raised 80% or more of their funding goal will become semi-finalists. A team of mom executives and entrepreneurs will judge each application to determine the $10,000 Grand Prize Grant Package winner. Competitors must be a member of NAFMIB.
Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneurial Winning Women Competition
Enter by June 30, 2011
Ten winners will be paired with advisers and resources for growing their businesses and they’ll get to participate in a customized executive-leadership program. In addition, winners will receive an all-expenses paid trip to the Ernst & Young Strategic Growth Forum 2011 in Palm Springs, Calif., in November.
The contest is being run in collaboration with the Women Presidents’ Organization, Women’s Business Enterprise National Council, the Committee of 200, National Association of Women Business Owners and Babson College.
The Conway Center for Family Business Awards 
Enter by August 4, 2011
The Conway Center for Family Business Awards Program was established in 1998 to recognize excellence in family business and has honored more than 115 Central Ohio family businesses during its first 11 years.
The program honors recipients in categories consistent with the success and longevity of a family business: leadership, planning, communication, support and community service. For more details, see the website.
Cleantech Open Idea Competition
Enter by September 12, 2011
The Cleantech Open runs the world’s largest clean technology business competition and they’re looking for the best clean technology ideas from around the world.
Enter to win a prize package of services worth $100,000 to help you start a business to grow your idea. If your idea beats out the competition in your National Competition, you get to represent your country as a Global Ideas finalist at the annual Cleantech Open Awards Gala on November 17, 2010 in San Francisco.
There, your idea will be presented in a five-minute pitch in front of a crowd of 2,500 investors, entrepreneurs, sponsoring companies, corporations, members of academia, press, and others interested in hearing your ideas and getting involved. The crowd will vote via text message for the “People’s Choice” winner.
To find more small business events, contests and awards, visit our Small Business Events Calendar . In addition, we also have a giveaways page; click to learn more about our small business giveaways  section.
If you are putting on a small business contest, award or competition, and want to get the word out to the community, please submit it through our Small Business Event and Contests Form. (We do not charge a fee to be included in this listing. )
Please note: The descriptions provided here are for convenience only and are NOT the official rules. ALWAYS read official rules carefully at the site holding the competition, contest or award.