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Cleantech Open Joins Forces with Kauffman Foundation to Promote Cleantech Ideas

Entrepreneurs from around the world can now compete for recognition and prizes. Held as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week, the Global Cleantech Open aims to encourage young people to pursue their dreams by entering a cleantech ideas competition.

Sept. 29, 2009: With three successful annual business competitions under its belt, and the 2009 program well underway, the Cleantech Open ( is now setting its sights on the global stage by launching the Global Cleantech Open Ideas Competition. Through a partnership with the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, the largest U.S. foundation devoted to advancing entrepreneurship and innovation, the Global Cleantech Open Ideas Competition is now a featured activity of Global Entrepreneurship Week.

The Global Cleantech Open Ideas Competition aims to foster and highlight cleantech ‘big ideas’ from forward-thinking entrepreneurs around the world, and to accelerate the discovery and development of groundbreaking cleantech solutions by working at a grassroots level. More informal than the current Cleantech Open business plan competition, the Global Cleantech Open Ideas Competition is open to entrants across the globe that are just getting started on innovative concepts for technologies, products, marketing campaigns or systems that will solve large-scale energy and environmental issues.

“Youth are the strongest advocates of environmental stewardship, and it’s their generation of entrepreneurs who will create the innovative clean technologies of the future,” said Lesa Mitchell, vice president of Advancing Innovations at the Kauffman Foundation. “We hope that launching the inaugural Global Cleantech Open Ideas Competition in conjunction with Global Entrepreneurship Week will inspire young people to bring to light their ideas for environmentally sustainable technologies.” 

“We believe that big ideas from innovative entrepreneurs will help solve many of today’s most pressing energy, environmental and economic problems,” said Rex Northen, executive director of the Cleantech Open. “We are thrilled to be working with the Kauffman Foundation to expand the reach of the Cleantech Open, and to stimulate the generation of great cleantech ideas on a global scale.”

To register for the competition, contestants should visit

Competition details
The Global Cleantech Open launches today, with all entries due by the October 15, 2009 deadline. In November, winners from each participating country will meet for a face-off at a spectacular Awards Gala in San Francisco. Prizes, designed to jump-start the fledgling companies, are valued at $100,000 in services.

Relevant Web resources
Global Cleantech Open Ideas Competition website:
Cleantech Open blog:
Cleantech Open on Facebook:
Cleantech Open on LinkedIn:
Cleantech Open on Twitter:
Global Entrepreneurship Week website:
Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation website: 

About Global Entrepreneurship Week
With the goal to inspire young people to embrace innovation, imagination and creativity, Global Entrepreneurship Week will encourage youth to think big, turn their ideas into reality, and make their mark. From Nov. 16-22, 2009, millions of young people around the world will join a growing movement to generate new ideas and seek better ways of doing things. Tens of thousands of activities are being planned in dozens of countries. Global Entrepreneurship Week was founded by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and the Make Your Mark campaign. For more information, visit, and follow @unleashingideas on Twitter.

About Kauffman Foundation
The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation is a private nonpartisan foundation that works to harness the power of entrepreneurship and innovation to grow economies and improve human welfare. Through its research and other initiatives, the Kauffman Foundation aims to open young people's eyes to the possibility of entrepreneurship, promote entrepreneurship education, raise awareness of entrepreneurship-friendly policies, and find alternative pathways for the commercialization of new knowledge and technologies. It also works to prepare students to be innovators, entrepreneurs and skilled workers in the 21st century economy through initiatives designed to improve learning in math, engineering, science and technology. Founded by late entrepreneur and philanthropist Ewing Marion Kauffman, the Foundation is based in Kansas City, Mo. and has approximately $2 billion in assets., and follow @kauffmanfdn on Twitter.

About The Cleantech Open
The Cleantech Open ( is the world’s largest clean tech business competition. It finds, funds, and fosters entrepreneurs with revolutionary ideas, technologies, and products that address today’s most urgent energy, climate, and economic challenges. Through its one-of-a-kind annual business competition and mentorship program, the Cleantech Open has helped hundreds of clean technology startups bring their breakthrough ideas to fruition since 2006, helping alumni contestants raise over $125m and making thousands of green collar jobs possible. In addition to the original competition held in California, the 2009 Cleantech Open was expanded to include two new regions: the Rocky Mountain region, including Colorado, Montana, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming; and the Pacific Northwest, including Washington, Oregon and Idaho. Cleantech entrepreneurs will compete for a total of more than $1 million in prizes. Fueled by a network of over 400 volunteers and sponsors, the Cleantech Open unites the public and private sectors in a shared vision for making America's clean tech sector a thriving economic engine. Past alumni successes include Adura Technologies, Cool Earth Solar, Enverity, Federspiel Controls, GreenVolts, GroundSource GeoThermal, Lucid Design Group, Mission Motors, and Syncromatics. For more information, visit, and follow @cleantechopen on Twitter.

Contact: Tim Cox, PR Chair, 650-369-7784,