Second annual CSU Blue Ocean Enterprises Challenge announces new tournament format

FORT COLLINS — Blue Ocean Enterprises, Inc. and Colorado State University today announced the second annual CSU Blue Ocean Enterprises Challenge, an innovative business pitch competition for entrepreneurs to be held in Fort Collins, Colo.

• The Enterprise category competition will take place May 26-30, 2015, during the second annual Fort Collins Startup Week and will award a $250,000 grand prize and other awards.

• The Collegiate category competition will be held May 26-27, 2015, and will award a $20,000 grand prize and other awards.

Following its successful 2014 competition, the 2015 CSU Blue Ocean Enterprises Challenge will introduce a tournament structure that draws inspiration from the world of sports. Using a bracket format, entrepreneurs will be seeded to compete in a single-elimination pitch tournament. Teams will make timed business presentations to a panel of on-stage judges, who will provide live feedback and on-the-spot votes.

Competitors for the Enterprise category will be selected from other prestigious business pitch competitions, top business incubator programs from around the country, and an online application process.

Entrepreneurs from colleges and universities in the state of Colorado may apply online at later this year to compete in the 2015 Collegiate category. Qualification criteria and application details will be announced in the coming months.

Questions about the CSU Blue Ocean Enterprises Challenge may be directed to Christine Chin, Information about Fort Collins Startup Week at

The CSU Blue Ocean Enterprises Challenge is the richest annual business pitch competition in Colorado, as measured by its grand prize of $250,000. Presented by Colorado State University and Blue Ocean Enterprises, the competition is a celebration of innovation, leadership development, and job creation. The Blue Ocean Enterprises Challenge is open to collegiate entrepreneurs throughout Colorado, startups, and existing companies seeking funding and business mentoring. More information is available at

Headquartered in Fort Collins, Colo., Blue Ocean Enterprises was established in 2011 by OtterBox Founder and Chairman Curt Richardson and his wife, Nancy Richardson, to provide business mentoring, accounting, legal, information technology, real estate, and human relations services to its affiliated companies. Blue Ocean Holdings LLC was established in 2011 by the Richardsons as an investment management company that commits capital to promising businesses and strategically invests in commercial real estate. Blue Ocean Holdings currently invests in more than a dozen Fort Collins-area businesses and owns more than 400,000 square feet of commercial property. Visit for more information.

Founded in 1870 as the Colorado Agricultural College, Colorado State University is now among the nation’s leading research universities. Located in Fort Collins, CSU currently enrolls about 22,000 undergraduate students, 3,100 graduate students and 500 Professional Veterinary Medicine students, and has more than 1,700 faculty members working in eight colleges. More information is available at