Steve Case – one of America’s best known and most accomplished entrepreneurs – is heading to Central Pennsylvania with the Rise of the Rest team to hear from local start-ups looking for a financier to invest in their ideas. Rise of the Rest is a nationwide effort to support startup ecosystems and work closely with entrepreneurs. They believe that “this is the beginning of a new era for entrepreneurship across the U.S. – high-growth companies can now start and scale anywhere, not just in a few coastal cities.”

Startups within 75 miles from Harrisburg, Lancaster or York were invited to submit applications to participate in a pitch competition on October 10th. The eight finalists will be notified by September 15th if they were chosen to present to Steve Case and the Rise of the Rest team. The winning startup will be awarded $100,000 investment from Steve Case himself. The fireside chat, pitch competition, and happy hour are free and open to the public. Space is limited, however, and you are encouraged to RSVP here.

Companies will be judged on criteria including:

  • Bold Idea: Does the idea “swing for the fences” and have the potential to disrupt a big industry, affect your community, or even change the world?
  • Jobs: Will the idea, if it scales, employ a large number of people?
  • Team: Does the team have the skills and leadership to move forward on this idea?
  • Execution: Is there strong customer growth or revenue?
  • Business Model: Has a revenue model been defined and is it realistic and sustainable?
  • Supporting Documents: The quality of your application responses and other supporting materials such as pitch deck, company website, product demo, video introduction.

Over the past three years, the Rise of the Rest team has traveled to over 26 cities – from Portland to Denver to Buffalo – to showcase and hear from the best startups in each city. Being chosen as a stop on a Rise of the Rest tour means Central Pennsylvania’s potential to be a great home to high-growth companies has been recognized by entrepreneurial thinkers like Steve Case and his team. The tour stop in Central Pennsylvania is being supported by the Harrisburg Regional Chamber, the Economic Development Company of Lancaster County and the York County Economic Alliance.