MADISON, Wis. – Co-working spaces, legal services and accounting services are just some of the prizes available to the applicants in the 2023 Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest. This year’s prize pool, which also includes cash, will approach $125,000.

Contestants have until 11:59 p.m. Tuesday Jan. 31, 2023, to enter their 250-word business ideas at

Since the contest’s inception in 2004, more than 4,450 entries have been received from 333 communities across Wisconsin. Finalists over time have shared in more than $2.5 million in cash and “in-kind” prizes (such as legal, accounting, office space and marketing). For many contestants, these services will provide an important jumpstart in getting their businesses rolling. Past sponsorships have included: 

• IT Consulting • Accounting Services  Website Design • Legal Services • Co-working Space            • Mentoring Classes • Social Media Consulting • Office Space

Sponsors currently contributing to the cash prize pool are the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp.; Madison Gas & ElectricUW-Madison Office of Business Engagement; VersitiAberdean Consulting; and the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation.

Past finalists have launched companies that have raised $300 million in grants, loans, and private equity financing – all while creating jobs and economic value for Wisconsin. When surveyed at different points, three-quarters of the finalists in the contest over time said they were still in business.

Companies or individuals that have not received angel or venture capital for a plan in its current form are eligible to enter. Funding from friends and family, accelerators and non-dilutive grants is generally allowed.

The 20th annual contest culminates with live presentations by the “Diligent Dozen,” at our June Wisconsin Entrepreneur’s Conference. Plus, any entrant may attend a Feb. 22 “boot camp” in Milwaukee.

To enter or become a sponsor, visit

Print Friendly, PDF & Email