Contact: Shawn Uhlman, PDC, 503-823-7994

September 09, 2015

Startup PDX Challenge

Applications open Wednesday, September 9 for the Portland Development Commission’s third annual Startup PDX Challenge, an international competition to connect startups to Portland’s growing entrepreneurial ecosystem and assist the businesses for one year through their early stage growth.

Up to six startup businesses will each receive a maximum of $25,000 in funding, a full year of rent-free office space at 222 NW Fifth Avenue in Portland’s Old Town/Chinatown neighborhood, peer-to-peer support, access and referrals to mentors in the Portland startup ecosystem (through PDC’s partnership with PIE), professional advice and services, and one-year memberships in entrepreneurial organizations and programs.

For-profit startups in any industry are invited to apply, with particular emphasis on companies that are led by teams or founders who are diverse in terms of gender, race, and other demographics that are typically underrepresented in the startup community.

The continued emphasis on diversity in this year’s Challenge builds on PDC’s ongoing commitment to inclusive entrepreneurship and increasing high wage jobs in the innovation economy for underrepresented populations.

“Portland’s growing diversity should be a competitive advantage for our position in the global economy,” said Patrick Quinton, PDC Executive Director. “PDC believes making our industries and innovation opportunities more inclusive is vital to our long-term economic success.”

The Challenge first launched in 2013, marking Portland’s national emergence as a top destination to grow a business and join a network of experienced and innovative peers competing in the global economy.

A committee made up of Challenge sponsors and experts from Portland’s startup community will select the winners based on their potential for growth and other factors. Applications close September 30, 2015. Finalists will be selected in December, and the full year program begins in January 2016.

Interested applicants may schedule a call or in-person appointment during Challenge office hours for assistance in completing the application.