Deadline: August 3, 2016 | Apply here
[Oops, the opportunity has already expired. Sign up to AlphaGamma weekly newsletters to stay ahead of the game]
 USD 500-25,000,-
Eligibility: You must be starting or growing a for-profit company whose social, environmental, and/or cultural mission strengthens your financial margins.

The Mentor Capital Network 2016

The Mentor Capital Network supports entrepreneurs who are building for-profit companies that make the world a better place by just existing. Firms that use their social, environmental, and/or cultural mission to strengthen their financial margins.

The Mentor Capital Network 2016 consists of:


Entrepreneurs building companies that are designed to make the world a better place to live through the success. The MCN supports Entrepreneurs by:

– Connecting to mentors, investors, and peers who are solving similar programs in non-competitive markets

– Providing extensive feedback from experts who know what it is to build a mission-driven company

– Connecting to mentors who want to be connected to them

– Supporting without getting in the way of our running our business

– (For the top companies in the collaboration program, providing cash and professional services.)


Leaders who have built, managed, invested in, or studied social enterprises, who know what it takes to turn a strong mission into a stronger margin. The MCN supports Mentors by:

– Connecting to their peers – learning about and from other perspectives on shared challenges

– Helping to get to know amazing entrepreneurs in a way that respects our busy schedules

– Giving the chance to build long-term relationships with the exciting new entrepreneurs

– Apply to be a mentor here.


Angels and VCs who are looking for companies with strong financial returns, and whose social and/or environmental missions are central to creating those returns. The MCN supports Investors by:

– Providing a vetted pipeline of companies in the areas of interest

– Giving the access to the expert perspectives on these companies

MCN has engaged over 1,000 Mentors and Investors to provide more than $5 million of Mentor Capital to support the launch and growth of more than 500 companies.

These firms have created thousands of jobs, brought in more than $100 million in sales and investment, and impacted millions of people by providing access to energy, clean water, fair employment, better health systems, sustainable agriculture, and other social and environmental benefits.

2016 Sustainable Business Plan Collaboration Prizes

$25K to Clean Energy Companies

The Mentor Capital Network 2016 is partnering with The 11th Hour Project to provide $25,000 worth of prizes to the top clean energy companies in this year’s Sustainable Business Plan Collaboration program.

For the purposes of these prizes, Clean Energy is defined as energy that comes from the responsible usage of renewable resources such as solar, the wind, and water.

They are interested in advancing renewable energy adoption for multiple reasons: to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from their power and transportation sectors, to achieve better health outcomes because of lowered air, water, and land pollution, to encourage responsible relationships with natural resources, and to support community energy resilience.

The 11th Hour Project’s Renewable Energy & Climate program has a goal of transitioning to 100% renewable energy by 2030 and supports renewable energy solutions that are distributed and small to mid-scale. They believe that it is not only important to promote renewables over fossil fuels but also to ensure that these renewables help us move away from our current centralised system of energy production, distribution, and ownership.

The 11th Hour Project is the grant-making arm of The Schmidt Family Foundation, established by Eric and Wendy Schmidt in 2006. The 11th Hour is committed to reducing reliance on fossil fuels and promoting the adoption of renewable energy options.

The Foundation for a Sustainable Future Richard Heinberg Prizes

The Foundation for a Sustainable Future provides three cash prizes ($2,500, $1,000, and $500) in honour of Richard Heinberg, an American journalist and educator who has written extensively on energy, economic, and ecological issues, including oil depletion. He is the author of twelve books. He serves as the senior fellow at the Post Carbon Institute.

Successful applicants for these prizes will have detailed the sustainability benefits resulting from their project, such as climate change mitigation, energy efficiency, beneficial materials (toxicity, efficiency, renewables, etc.), clean-tech, water security, to name just a few. Discuss the metrics by which these benefits could be quantified.

IT Guidance and Advisory Services

Community IT serves non-profits, associations and socially responsible businesses. They combine technology expertise with unsurpassed service to more than 900 organisations, both locally and nationally, since 1993. Community IT offers clients support for their network infrastructure and technology planning needs.

For top performers of the 2016 WJF Sustainable Business Plan Collaboration, Community IT is donating 12 hours of either general IT advisory services, or guidance and advisory services around setting up technology for a start-up, to two companies. This could be local (Washington, DC) or virtual (worldwide). Each prize is worth $1,200.

Consulting, Training, and Strategic Support

Lee Boyle will provide six hours of his consulting time to help prepare the winning recipient for a traditional bank loan. Help can include reviewing and advising on a business plan, explaining traditional bank loan terms and application requirements, as well as explaining SBA-guaranteed loan terms and requirements.

Lee also has a good network of local professionals such as attorneys and CPAs that he can refer if needed. This prize is valued at $2000.

A Month of Business or Executive Coaching

Margarita Rozenfeld is the Founder and CEO of Incite International, an award-winning organisational and leadership development company and of YES!Circle, a networking and educational organisation for entrepreneurs. She is also the host of Leadership Insights, an interview-style podcast for leaders, thinkers and entrepreneurs.

Margarita is donating a month of business or executive coaching to support this year’s top companies. This prize is valued at $900.

Consulting Assignment and Support

Shifting Patterns Consulting facilitates social change by working alongside networks that increase civic engagement and hasten the transition to a sustainable economy. Shifting Patterns is pleased to offer a short-term consulting assignment that includes a consultation session to explore the challenges your business is facing in connecting and engaging the people you work with and the communities you serve in collaborative action.

This prize also includes support over a period of 2-3 months for addressing a specific collaboration challenge, such as getting everyone to rally around the same goals, creating channels for people to join and participate, and retaining participants over the longer-term.

Strategic Advice

Strategic Sustainability Consulting provides organisations with the tools and expertise they need to actively manage their social and environmental impacts. They specialise in helping small and medium size organisations implement sustainable solutions usually reserved for larger companies.

Strategic Sustainability Consulting (SSC) is offering a prize-winning team 15 hours of strategic advice. This prize is appropriate for all teams, with the understanding that all support is done remotely via phone, email, Skype, etc. The winning team should expect to spend an hour on the phone with the SSC team within two weeks of receiving this prize so that they can decide how best to utilise the hours allocated.

The winning team should expect to spend an hour on the phone with the SSC team within two weeks of receiving this prize so that they can decide how best to utilise the hours allocated.

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