Valid Eval News
Valid Eval Managing a Third Consecutive AZ Innovation Challenge
We are delighted to have won the opportunity to help the Arizona Commerce Authority run its Spring 2013 Arizona Innovation Challenge. The application window is open for companies now. Roughly eight startups will be selected using Valid Eval’s evidence-based platform to win grants of $150,000 to $250,000. Good luck to all Copper State applicants!
U of Utah’s Energy Commercialization Center Launches $10k Competition
The University of Utah boasts a technology commercialization program that – by some measures – rivals MIT and Stanford, so we’re especially pleased to be doing business with their Energy Commercialization Center. Check out their inaugural Energize 2013 competition!
Six Midwest Events Live
Valid Evaluation is in close collaboration with the Department of Energy's Midwestern regional competition host, the Clean Energy Trust. The competitors have submitted their applications and judges are beginning to evaluate student businesses. Simultaneous statewide events are happening in Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, Ohio and Wisconsin. The CET's Clean Energy Challenge 2013 culminates with a live pitch competition in Chicago on April 4, 2013. The winning team goes to Washington DC to compete in the national event.
University of Colorado's Cleantech New Venture Challenge Kicks Off
In their second year of running this competition, CU tapped Valid Eval again to manage its Cleantech New Venture Challenge. The competition is currently accepting applications. We are excited to help cleantech student businesses from all over the Rockies.
U. of West Virginia to Host the Inaugural TransTech Energy Conference
Supporting tomorrow's successful “transition energy” technologists, the TransTech Energy Conference partnered with Valid Eval to select the companies who will have an opportunity to pitch investors at the conference on November 14th - 16th. UWV has recruited energy experts from industry to evaluate business summaries. Valid Eval helps make the process transparent, and a rich learning opportunity for all of the companies that applied.
Big Enhancements go Live
With some timely development help, Valid Evaluation is better positioned than ever to support new and existing clients. We can now light up new events in just a couple of hours without technical assistance. We have also deployed automated password recovery for our users. We’ve pushed a ton of usability improvements into the code. If you’re considering doing business with us, there’s never been a better time to reach out and get in touch.
The Fall Arizona Innovation Challenge Accepting Applications
Valid Eval is delighted to be working with the Arizona Commerce Authority to support their Arizona Innovation Challenge. We attended the kickoff event and were blown away by the vibrancy and enthusiasm of Arizona’s entrepreneurs. Over 500 people were there and we look forward to helping all of them make their startups, incubators and accelerators more successful.
Success at DOE National University Business Competition
Valid Eval successfully supported the final two rounds of The U.S. Department of Energy’s National Clean Energy Business Plan Competition. Judges used the same evaluation rubrics for both the written and live-pitch rounds, providing rich and unprecedented feedback to the six final teams. Judges, teams and organizers were very pleased with our tools and plan on using them to support future competitions. Congrats to NuMat Technologies from Northwestern University, this year’s winners!
The SBA Grants HUBZone Status to Valid Eval
The Small Business Administration has granted a Historically Underutilized Business Zone designation to Valid Evaluation. HUBZone status represents a significant milestone for the company and is expected to speed future government contracts awarded to Valid Eval in coming months.
First Close on Convertible Debt
Citing a need for operational flexibility, Valid Evaluation closed the first of what it anticipates as a “handful” of debt investments. This ends over a year of successful bootstrapping by the company. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
New Design Project Launched: Evaluating Intellectual Property
The National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) commissioned Valid Eval to design a system to evaluate invention disclosures. Like many institutions, NREL is unable to patent every invention from their communities of innovators. Valid Eval developed a customized suite of evaluation rubrics to address this problem and better communicate NREL’s institutional priorities. This multidisciplinary effort was driven by a collaboration between the lab’s very experienced technology commercialization experts and Valid Eval’s instructional and user experience designers.
Design Win: Arizona Commerce Authority Chooses Valid Evaluation for the AZ Innovation Challenge
The Arizona Commerce Authority chose Valid Eval to support their bi-annual selection of deserving grant recipients. The Arizona Innovation Challenge awards $3M to roughly twelve deserving early-stage companies from over 600 applicants. Valid Eval again met the challenge of co-creating grant application forms, tutorial packets, and delivered a custom software solution in less than two weeks.
Valid Eval Successfully Completes NREL Industry Growth Forum judging
Valid Eval announced the successful completion of the 24th NREL Industry Growth Forum’s selection process-- supporting its largest single event to date. In all, 257 companies were evaluated by 123 judges competing for 30 presentation slots. Feedback to Valid Evaluation was primarily positive, while negative feedback led to new approaches supporting organizers, evaluators, and applicants.
Design Win: U.S. Department of Energy’s National Clean Energy Business Plan Competition
Valid Eval was pleased to receive another design win in the clean technology industry. This time, working with the University of Colorado as a subcontractor to the U.S. Department of Energy, Valid Eval managed one of six regional semifinals competitions. They provided a complete solution for this competition: developing application forms, creating a detailed tutorial explaining the competition’s performance criteria, as well as providing their evaluation software.
Successful Nationwide Beta Test of Mentoring Tool
Valid Evaluation’s software was used across the country to support the Cleantech Open’s initial round of ‘mock judging.’ Mentors spent a number of days providing feedback on semifinalists’ investment pitches to help participants prepare for the high stakes regional finals. For the first time, Valid Eval’s software was being used to advance companies’ progress instead of selecting winners in a competition.
Design Win: The NREL Industry Growth Forum Selects Valid Eval
The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) chose Valid Eval’s software to manage the selection process for the 24th Industry Growth Forum. The event boasted nearly 300 applicants vying for 30 spots to present at one of the world’s premier cleantech investor conferences. Event organizers benefited from a valuable new feature: the capacity to automatically match judges to companies based on their industry and venture stage at the click of a button.
Valid Evaluation, Inc. Incorporates
Kent Hollrah, Todd Reimer and Adam Rentschler officially incorporated as Valid Evaluation, Inc. (a C-corp) in Denver, Colorado. The team continued development of an evaluation system with enhanced features based on feedback provided by industry leaders.
Cleantech Open’s First Round Judging Completes Successfully
The Rocky Mountain Region of the Cleantech Open decided to use Valid Eval’s evaluation software to complete its selection of semifinalists for the class of 2011. For the first time, every applying team benefited from structured feedback based on transparent and clearly described criteria.
First Revenue: Agreement with the Colorado Workforce Development Council
Valid Evaluation won its first revenue. The company agreed to build an evaluation system to support the state of Colorado’s State Energy Sector Partnership (SESP). The SESP funds scholarships for clean technology entrepreneurs within incubators and accelerators along Colorado’s front range, including: CleanLaunch, the Colorado Springs Technology Incubator, Lightly Treading, Longmont Entrepreneurial Network, and Rocky Mountain Innosphere.
“...I love what you’re doing and how you’ve gone about it. It’s a complex process and extremely subjective and you’ve done a great job (in my opinion) of helping the judges be less judgmental and more objective with the same criteria with which to evaluate teams. Well done.”
Cleantech Open, 2011
“I want to compliment you on all aspects of the new process; it was easier to perform the evaluations and was fun in comparison with last year.”
Venture Capitalist Judge
Cleantech Open, 2011