Fish 2.0 Business Competition Deadline Nears; Few Gulf of Mexico Proposals Boosts Chances for Late Applicants

by / Newsroom Ink on April 24, 2017

GULF OF MEXICO, USA — Seafood entrepreneurs and businesses in the Gulf of Mexico have until this Friday to apply for the Fish 2.0 2017 business competition, a global search that awards $50,000 for the best business plan from a sustainable seafood enterprises.

The competition gives participating entrepreneurs access to investors, advisors, and partners who can help their businesses grow. And a low applicant pool in one category specifically stands to benefit Gulf of Mexico businesses, especially those related to crustaceans or shellfish.

“It’s a numbers game,” said Terry Strickland, one of three co-organizers who helped bring the competition to the Southeast this year. “I would encourage anyone who is eligible to apply.”

This year’s competition creates miniature contests within regions, as well as two globally themed tracks, with the top scorers from each track moving on to the global finals. The six regional tracks are Chile and Peru, New England (U.S.), Pacific Islands, Southeast Asia, South Atlantic and Gulf Coast Shellfish/Crustaceans, and West Coast (U.S.).

Currently, the “South Atlantic and Gulf Coast Shellfish” track has the lowest number of applicants, thereby increasing the chance of advancing within that category.

The global tracks are Transparency and Traceability, and Supply Chain Innovation. Each track has specific eligibility criteria, detailed at

Over 60 percent of the finalists in the Fish 2.0’s last competition gained investment, new partners, or new customers from connections they made during the program.

Working through a global network, competition platform, and events, Fish 2.0 participants meet potential investors, partners, and advisors that help them accelerate impact and growth. Meanwhile, investors and advisors get early access to investment opportunities and learn about emerging technologies and trends.

Both established and early-stage enterprises can apply through the Fish 2.0 website ( The application period closes April 29.

The top three businesses from each regional track and the top five businesses from each global track will be invited to pitch to investors at the Nov. 7–8 final event at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California. They will compete for over $50,000 in cash prizes as well as industry connections to high-level seafood buyers, investors, and industry experts. More about prizes and awards can be viewed here: (

The competition takes place online over several months. Participants are paired with investors and advisors who work with them on developing their business strategy and positioning their enterprise to gain investment.

Love the Wild, a Colorado-based company that sells traceable, sustainable fish packaged with gourmet sauces, was a runner-up in the 2015 competition. They’ve since gone on to raise $3.5 million through connections made at Fish 2.0. The company made headlines in January, when they announced that actor Leonardo DiCaprio had signed on as an investor and advisory board member.

“Not everyone will wind up with a celebrity investor,” Strickland said. “But everyone will benefit in some way, and they don’t have to get to the finals to be a winner. But you do have to enter to have a chance.”

The nine-question application takes less than a couple hours to complete; other than that investment of time, there is no cost to apply. If selected, Fish 2.0 will fly one team member from each of the finalists to California in November to present to a panel of industry representatives and investors.

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