Colorado Springs, CO (PRWEB) March 18, 2014
The Launchpoint travel startup competition is back and the call for entries is currently taking place. Launchpoint is the first and only funding competition led by frequent flyers for small startups focused on providing tools, services and apps designed for road warriors/frequent flyers, and the competition goes live at Frequent Traveler University in Seattle on Saturday, April 26, 2014.
Submissions are being accepted now through Friday, April 18. Two presenters will be chosen to go on to the finals, joining prior competition winners Wallaby, Bolt, Navigator and Credit Card Watchdog for the grand prize of $50,000 plus other prizes provided by supporters Delta Air Lines, Hilton Hotels, Southwest Airlines, Hyatt Hotels, National Car Rental and FoundersCard.
All presenters will pitch live onstage at Frequent Traveler University in front of more than 400 road warriors/frequent flyers—a “Shark Tank” for tools, services and apps for the traveler.
“We understand that it can be very difficult for startups to get the exposure they need to be successful, so the expressed goal of Launchpoint is to find, fund and foster entrepreneurs with big ideas that can help the road warrior/frequent flyer," said Randy Petersen, co-founder, Milepoint.com. “Launchpoint is a great way to foster that innovation—and maybe even find the next idea for the frequent traveler.”
Launchpoint stands out because it takes no equity in any of the winners, is not ‘pay-to-pitch’ and 100 percent of all sponsor money goes directly to the winners. The competitions are completely free and participants compete for $50,000 in cash, in-kind prizes and various awards.
“I love the concept—great idea,” said Jeff Robertson, Vice President, Delta Air Lines SkyMiles Program. “This feels like the type of program that should have the entire industry’s support—it’s a way for all of us to do a better job at servicing our worldwide airline customers. We will be involved as a founding partner.”
Launchpoint has a novel approach to funding ideas for road warriors/frequent flyers by entrepreneurs presenting their ideas in front of actual road warriors/frequent flyers at competitions held in conjunction with Frequent Traveler University events. After pitching their ideas to the frequent travelers in Seattle, they will be questioned by three prominent travel bloggers. Voting by the audience will then ensue. As a result of the competitions at Frequent Traveler University, both the winner and the first runner-up become eligible for the final round, which will be conducted by popular voting later in 2014.
One winner will be awarded up to $50,000 in cash and prizes.
“Launchpoint is a terrific idea that Points is thrilled to be a part of … it’s not that long ago that we were in ‘start up’ mode and the advice and support of people like Randy [Petersen] was critical to our early development,” said Rob MacLean, CEO, Points.com.
“I’m a big believer that we are an industry that has an exciting future and that a good bit of that future will be shaped by today’s entrepreneurs,” continued MacLean. “Some well-placed capital, and perhaps some timely advice, may be just the help that a great idea needs to get launched successfully.”
“The companies chosen to demonstrate at Frequent Traveler University are innovators with significant potential to transform the experience of the road warrior,” said Petersen. “But, it takes more than a great idea to succeed in the marketplace and Launchpoint enables us to provide these entrepreneurs with the best possible resources, including networking, audience, mentorship and funding.”
Launchpoint is currently accepting applications for entrepreneurs to demonstrate at the next Frequent Traveler University Competition in Seattle. To learn more, visit http://launchpoint.milepoint.com.
Founded by Milepoint, Launchpoint is the first and only funding competition led by frequent flyers for small startups focused on providing tools, services and applications designed for road warriors/frequent flyers.
Milepoint was created by frequent flyers, for frequent flyers. Its online forums allow members to share experiences and advice related to travel and frequent flyer programs with like-minded road warriors, leisure travelers, infrequent flyers, travel hackers and mileage junkies.
Milepoint is a privately funded venture by a small diverse group of experienced travel experts, travel community builders, technologists and friends of the frequent flyer. Milepoint is headed by Randy Petersen, who founded many of the top websites for road warriors including InsideFlyer, FlyerTalk, BoardingArea and SeatExpert, as well as the popular Freddie Awards. Milepoint, in its first three years, has lead its members in donating/lending more than $7,000,000 to various charity causes and is a LIVESTRONG President’s Circle member.