Young entrepreneurs and inventors will present their projects to investors and business leaders. They will compete in a televised game show, Million-Rouble Idea, on NTV in December.
More than 500 applications were submitted for participation in Million-Rouble Idea. The projects were selected in five areas: information technology, biotechnology, energy-efficient technology, space and industrial production. The main selection criteria were scientific value, available prototypes, team qualifications and merchantability. The contestants are 35 start-ups longlisted for the prizes from Vnesheconombank.
Seven projects will go through to the final of the show, three of them becoming prize winners eligible for 25, 20 and 15 million roubles for business development.
The judges include business leaders on the Forbes list of Russia’s 200 wealthiest people in business: Alexey Repik, who founded R-Pharm, a pharmaceutical company; Dmitry Konov, Chairman of the Management Board of SIBUR, a gas processing and petrochemicals company.
On behalf of Vnesheconombank, the game show will be judged by Chairman Sergey Gorkov and Deputy Chairman and Member of the Board Alexey Ivanchenko, who supervises the Million-Rouble Idea project.
The heads of Russia’s major investment funds took an active part in evaluating the projects submitted for the show. Therefore, any start-up eliminated before the final can find the deal of its life. For example, one of the judges is Alexander Galitsky, Managing Partner of Almaz Capital, who pioneered Wi-Fi and VPN networks. He was honoured as the most influential person in the Russian IT industry by Forbes in 2011. Among the judges are Alexey Konov, Managing Partner of RBV Capital; Arkady Moreynis, who founded Glavstart, a start-up business factory, and Price.ru, a comparison shopping engine; Sergey Fradkov, Managing Partner of iDealMachine, a venture capital fund and start-up accelerator.
The contestants will be evaluated by business leaders: Leonid Kazinets, Chairman of the Management Board of Barkli, a development company; Vitaly Yusufov, Chairman of the Board of Directors of IcomInvest, a telecommunications company.
The game show will be judged by the heads of development institutions providing support for high-technology start-ups: Alexander Chernov, Senior Vice President of the Skolkovo Foundation; Svetlana Chupsheva, General Director of the Agency for Strategic Initiatives; Mikhail Mamuta, Head of the Service for Consumer Protection and Financial Inclusion of the Bank of Russia; Eldar Muslimov, member of the Supervisory Board of the Monotowns Development Fund.
The judges also include Russian celebrities: TV show hosts Tutta Larsen and Tatiana Gevorkyan; radio presenter Sergey Stillavin; actor and television and radio presenter Oskar Kuchera; singer and car customisation shop owner Denis Klyaver. They will be attentive to the practical application of presented inventions in everyday life.
“A contribution to the development of an innovative economy, a search for new ideas and their subsequent implementation are the goals of the Million-Rouble Idea show. As a development institution, Vnesheconombank finds it important to popularise the image of people and the opportunities of this country. We have a willingness to invest in the future,” Alexey Ivanchenko, Deputy Chairman and Member of the Board of Vnesheconombank, said.
“Million-Rouble Idea is a kind of guide, providing an opportunity to get answers from potential investors and development institutions and receive assistance with start-up promotion,” Svetlana Chupsheva, General Director of the Agency for Strategic Initiatives, said.
“This show can give money to start-ups and can open up investment opportunities. The economy or, even more, the country will be given the confidence and hope that we have good prospects, really good. To be an entrepreneur should be respected. There is nothing improper in entrepreneurship,” Alexander Chernov, Senior Vice President of the Skolkovo Foundation, said.