Venture Madness – a new kind of startup battle – apply today

Venture Madness – a new kind of startup battle – applications open today

Venture Madness, presented by Invest Southwest in partnership with Arizona Commerce Authority, is a competition where 64 startups from around the southwest will go head-to-head and compete for a portion of the $25,000 prize.

For the last 20 years, Invest Southwest, has been the premier capital conference in the region connecting investors with ventures and has had an “investment-centric focus” format, until this year. The event has gone through a serious transformation by responding to the needs of its audience and embracing the vibrancy of the startup community, starting with Venture Madness.

How Venture Madness works: Think of it as the “Battle of the Brackets” where startups duel it out bracket-style for the top slot. Thirty-two (of 64) bracket spots will be awarded to past participants from the Arizona Innovation Challenge (AIC); the remaining 32 spots will be filled through open enrollment. Startups from the southwest can apply today, December 6, 2013, through January 3, 2014.

Once the 64 ventures are established, there will be two online elimination rounds and 16 companies will advance to the live-demo rounds before a panel of judges on March 5-7, at Talking Stick Resort in Scottsdale.

Jonathan Ariano, chairman of Invest Southwest and Partner with Osborn Maledon, explains the new format and vibe, “Before, we used to have 12-14 companies go through a mentoring process to produce a ten minute presentation, with no Q&A, nor a contest-it was more of an investment-centric conference. When we went through the revamping process, we started thinking like a startup and asked ourselves ‘who is our customer?’ and spent months brainstorming on what that looked like. What we realized is that there are great programs and incubators that help entrepreneurs, but what was missing was the connective tissue…and that’s our job. We will be the connection to the investor community and showcasing what the Southwest has to offer-and the best way we can do that is Venture Madness.”

As part of the Venture Madness event, the organizers have weaved in more investor and startup connection opportunities including lunch-n-learns, cocktail parties and a Spring Training outing.

“We are really excited about this new format,” said Ariano. “There are a lot of great companies in the Southwest and the level of quality just keeps going up.”

Hey startups! Open enrollment starts now! Companies interested in participation must complete the online application, as well as create and submit a 90-second elevator pitch video. Applications and more information for Venture Madness, including detailed instructions, are available online at

Venture Madness timeline:

  • December 6, 2013: Startup application opens
  • December 16, 2013: Event tickets available for purchase online
  • January 3, 2014: Startup applications close
  • February 3 – 14, 2014: First online elimination round with a 64 company bracket
  • February 17 – 24, 2014: Second online elimination round with a 32 company bracket
  • February 24, 2014: 16 companies to pitch live announced
  • March 5, 2014: Venture Madness 2014 kicks off with an evening cocktail reception at Talking Stick Resort
  • March 6, 2014: Third elimination round, 16 companies to pitch live
  • March 7, 2014: Elimination rounds four – six; Venture Madness Champion announced


FedEx® Deep Frozen Shipping Solution now part of BIO Business Solutions

BIO Business Solutions® has teamed up with FedEx to now include specialized deep frozen shipping solutions to member companies. The FedEx® Deep Frozen Shipping Solution provides innovative liquid nitrogen dry vapor technology via a cryogenic dewar along with end-to-end shipment monitoring and visibility. Specifically suited for preserving the integrity of biogenics, this solution provides up to 10 days of holding time at temperature ranges down to -150˚C. The solution offers member companies several advantages:

  • Keeps tissue samples and substances deep-frozen at -150°C
  • Provides up to 10 days without need for dry ice or power
  • Meets International Air Transport Association (IATA) requirements for both infectious substances (UN3373) and non-infectious clinical samples
  • Eliminates inventory of insulated boxes and dry ice
  • Provides advanced tracking and proactive monitoring via FedEx Priority AlertTM.
  • FedEx provides end-to-end solutions to help your temperature sensitive products maintain optimum temperature while in transit across the nation or across the ocean.

Member Benefits

Discounted Flat Fee of $435 for Domestic or $750 for international shipment


To enroll in the FedEx® Deep Frozen Shipping Solution, click below:

More Information

For more information on FedEx® Deep Frozen Shipping Solution, call 1-888-370-3971

FedEx® Deep Frozen Shipping Solution Case Study

Read the case study below to learn how Cenetron Diagnostics was successful using the FedEx® Deep Frozen Shipping Solution to cost effectively transport and track temperature sensitive clinical trial shipments and to learn how businesses like yours are taking advantage of powerful integration solutions with FedEx. As a reminder, FedEx Web Services allows you to integrate FedEx® shipping, tracking, rating, address validation, reporting tools, and more, directly into your website.

Read more here: Cenetron_Case_Study.pdf

Eligible Affiliates

All AZBio and BIO members are eligible to utilize the BIO Business Solutions® program with FedEx.


The Arizona Commerce Authority is seeking an economic research analyst to join its top-notch research team in Phoenix. The ACA’s mission is to grow and strengthen Arizona’s economy and facilitate the creation of quality jobs in the state by supporting and attracting businesses in targeted, high-value base sectors. The research team compiles and analyzes economic data to assist in business attraction, business development and business retention.Continue reading

Sign Up for the Alzheimer’s Prevention Registry

alzheimers prevention registry

Launching a research study often takes years of work, and most of the effort occurs behind the scenes. The exciting news is that several of these studies have just launched or are close to being ready to start recruiting participants through the Alzheimer’s Prevention Registry. And more studies will launch in the coming years. Here is a snapshot of a few of the studies that will be taking place in the United States and other countries around the world:

  • A trial in 1000 adults ages 65-85 who have evidence of amyloid plaque build up in their brain based on a screening PET scan, and  who are at risk for Alzheimer’s disease but are still cognitively healthy to determine whether an experimental medication may delay cognitive decline
  • A trial in nearly 6,000 adults ages 65-83 to learn about the genetic risk for developing mild cognitive impairment due to Alzheimer’s disease and whether an experimental medication might delay the symptoms
  • Two trials in a rare, hereditary form of early-onset Alzheimer’s with experimental medications to determine if treatment delays cognitive impairment
  • And many more.

Imagine having tens of thousands of volunteers awaiting an e-mail from the Registry announcing that a study is ready to begin enrollment in their communities.  Researchers could quickly screen and fill their enrollment sites in a matter of weeks or months, not years. Saving this precious time means we get to answers faster.
This is why the Alzheimer’s Prevention Registry will play a vital role in these and other prevention trials.

Take action:   While researchers work to get these and other studies ready, you can help by continuing to encourage your friends and family to sign up for the Registry.



FTC Seeking Public Comment on Follow-On Biologics

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is seeking public comment on follow-on biologics.

In addition, the FTC will hold a public workshop on December 1oth.

The Follow-On Biologics Workshop: Impact of Recent Legislative and Regulatory Naming Proposals on Competition

The  Federal Trade Commission announces it will hold a workshop to explore  competition issues involving biologic medicines and follow-on biologics. As  described in the Federal Register Notice, the workshop will focus on a few key  issues, inter alia:

  • The potential impact of state regulations affecting competition.
  • How regulations, if necessary, might be structured to facilitate competition  while still protecting patient health and safety.
  •   How naming may affect competition.
  • The experience of other countries with follow-on biologic competition.

The  Federal Register Notice poses a series of questions about which the FTC seeks  public comment. The FTC will take these comments into account in its  examination of these topics.

Previous Biologics Workshops and Report:

Event Details


December 10, 2013 Time: 9am – 5pm


FTC Conference Center

601 New Jersey Avenue, NW

Washington, DC

Learn more at