The annual Bootstrap Awards celebrate self-capitalized businesses in the National Capitol Region that have “bootstrapped” their growth with limited outside funding and achieved commercial success. The awards were created to recognize the outstanding achievements of early stage companies in all industries, both for-profit and non-profit, and across a range of distinct criteria-based categories.
The winner demonstrates how their company or organization is striving to improve the environment or contribute to environmental health or awareness through a combination of environmental and economic (commercial) sustainability.
The winner demonstrates how their company has applied scientific and/or engineering expertise and technology to solve a problem in a way that is unique and innovative.
The winner demonstrates how their company uses Software as a Service to provide a product that has customer uptake and enthusiasm as shown in number of customers and/or growth.
The winner demonstrates how they used innovative marketing strategies to attract media attention and stakeholder involvement while cost-effectively acquiring customers and clients.
BOOTSTRAP CAPITAL AWARD
The winner demonstrates their ability to self-finance and “bootstrap” their enterprise with limited or no help from Angel or Venture Capital investors, and grow their business while remaining economically viable and profitable.
The winner demonstrates how they are boldly trying to turn a business or paradigm on its head or changing an industry and have received some early traction from supporters. This award celebrates those who have a big vision and are taking a risk to make their vision a reality.
COMMUNITY IMPACT AWARD
The winner demonstrates how their efforts or organization has had an impact on the community in terms of social good by improving diversity, providing a service or product to an under-served community, raising awareness of a cause or initiative through a unique event, campaign, or fundraising program and by using innovative and/or entrepreneurial techniques. This award may be given to an individual entrepreneur or company.
FOUNDER OF THE YEAR
This winner demonstrates exceptional leadership and ability to grow their company and build their business through stakeholder engagement and networking, and/or shown themselves to be a leader and influencer in the business community, acting as a peer role-model for other founders.