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Minnesota Cup Goes Global

The Minnesota Cup -- the largest statewide new venture competition in the nation -- has announced that it is adding an International Division to its 10th annual competition, set to launch in March 2014. LifeScience Alley, the largest state-based life sciences trade association in the U.S. and partner of the Minnesota Cup, will serve as the division's sponsor.

The Minnesota Cup competition encourages the development of breakthrough ideas from across the state, now with eight divisions. The International Division joins Energy/Clean Tech/Water, General, High Tech, Life Science/Health IT, Social Entrepreneur and Student, as well as the other new category, announced in mid-November -- the Food, Agriculture and Beverage Division.
The International Division will encourage international partnerships by supporting entrepreneurs from across the globe -- while helping to attract new companies and talent to Minnesota.

"The Minnesota Cup has worked with more than 8,000 entrepreneurs since we started the competition in 2005. Our goal? To retain and grow Minnesota start-up companies by connecting high potential ideas with Minnesota's entrepreneurial business community," said Scott Litman, co-founder of the Minnesota Cup. "We have no doubt this partnership with LifeScience Alley, and its international reputation and network, will support our new International Division, and help attract innovative ideas, businesses and creative thinkers to Minnesota."

"LifeScience Alley has a longstanding commitment to the development of international relationships for our state --because of our members' global operations, and because we're seeking to attract innovative companies," said Dale Wahlstrom, president and CEO, LifeScience Alley. "The Minnesota Cup partnership will give our regional and international life science partners, as well as international start-ups, an opportunity to connect and create new business in Minnesota. It will be an adventure for us all."
Eligible candidates for the International Division must be entrepreneurs, inventors or small business owners with an already established innovative new business concept, or those developing one. Additionally, the candidate's home country must be a sponsor of the Minnesota Cup. Countries and international entrepreneurs interested in the 2014 competition should contact Minnesota Cup at support@breakthroughideas.org. All international entrepreneurs competing in the Minnesota Cup will receive exposure, mentorship, financial and in-kind resources as well as access to the U.S. market, while the division's winner will receive seed capital.

LifeScience Alley is an international leader in sharing best practices, and is the largest state-based life sciences trade association in the United States. With a 29-year track record of providing valuable services and results-oriented outcomes to its members, LifeScience Alley improves the life science operating environment and enables business success through educating workforces, influencing state and federal public policy, supporting advancement in research and technological innovation and fostering industry connections. Together with its subsidiary, The BioBusiness Alliance of Minnesota, LifeScience Alley works to strengthen the regional economy by assisting in the growth of established and emerging industries, and attracting new companies, talent and capital. For more, visit www.LifeScienceAlley.org.

The Minnesota Cup is an annual competition that seeks to support and accelerate the development of the best breakthrough ideas from across the state. For more information and details on how to enter for 2014, please visit www.breakthroughideas.org.

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