Winning a small business award, contest or competition can bring your business publicity, give you a competitive edge with clients, and generally set your business apart from the pack. Here’s our latest list — see if one is right for your business:
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Dell has launched a $100 million Innovators Credit Fund, with the purpose of helping entrepreneurs “maximize potential for innovation, speed to market and job creation.” The credit fund will offer both funding and technology resources with IT support, depending on what each start-up needs.
To be eligible, you must have already received some angel funding or venture capital before you can apply. Start-ups can get up to 10% of its current funding or up to $150,000 with limited credit terms. See website for details and application.
Toshiba, Intel and Staples have teamed up to help small businesses share their stories and win thousands of dollars in new technology. Throughout 2012, they will award $10,000 technology makeovers to American businesses and free Intel-powered Ultrabooks to the people who support them.
Categories include Powering Knowledge, Powering Innovation, Powering Service, Powering Products, and Powering Good. See website for details and entry guidelines.
To enter, contestants must email a photo in jpeg format to firstname.lastname@example.org with a short description of how they make sure their stapler stays at their desk—whether it’s attaching it to a chain made out of rubber bands and paper clips, writing their name on it with white correction fluid, or some other creative idea. Brought to you by OFM and Swingline, first prize is an OFM desk of your choice and a red Swingline stapler.
FIU 2013 Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame Awards 
Enter by September 30, 2012
The annual Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame celebrates the College of Business Administration’s ongoing commitment to entrepreneurship and honors alumni who not only are successful entrepreneurs but who also have contributed significantly to the entrepreneurial business community.
The Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame was established in 1999 to recognize Florida International University alumni who have achieved distinction as founders and builders of new business enterprises.
Best Places to Work in Connecticut 
Enter by October 5, 2012
To be eligible for consideration, companies must meet the following criteria:
Be a for-profit or not-for-profit business or government entity
Be a publicly or privately held business
Have a facility in the state of Connecticut
Have a minimum of 15 employees working in the state of Connecticut*
Must be in business a minimum of 1 year
The 2012-2013 MillerCoors Urban Entrepreneurs Series (MUES) business plan competition is now open and accepting entries.
Since 1999, MillerCoors has invested more than $1.7 million in the dreams of entrepreneurs. This year brings new opportunities for entrepreneurs like you. Enter your business plan for a chance to vie for a $50,000 business grant and potentially become a MillerCoors supplier.
StartupNation Home-Based 100 Competition
Enter by October 31, 2012
The fifth annual StartupNation Home-Based 100 Competition is now open and accepting entries. The Competition is a ranking of outstanding home businesses and the amazing people behind them. With more than 18 million home-based businesses in the United States, StartupNation’s competition is aimed at celebrating the most successful businesses in this important segment of the market. Entries are accepted until the end of October. The 100 winners will be published in mid-December 2012. Winners can receive priceless exposure in the media and be positioned to take their business to the next level.
Do you have a great idea for an Infusionsoft App, integration or plug-in that will enhance the Infusionsoft user experience? Then you have a shot at being crowned the Kick Apps Champion in the Battle of the Apps 2013. First prize is $10,000. See website for details.
Shopify Build-A-Business Competition 
Enter by December 31, 2012
Shopify has teamed up with four world-class entrepreneurs to
help you build a million-dollar business in just months. Come up with a product to sell, open your online store and pick a mentor. The Shopify community and your mentor will give you great advice and guidance along the way. At the end of the competition, the four stores that sell the most over a two month period will each win a $50,000 investment from their mentor.
To find more small business events, contests and awards, visit our Small Business Events Calendar . 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 (it’s free).
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.