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Turning Innovation Into Enterprise


Shale Gas Innovation Contest Open To West Virginia Ventures

Application Period Open Through February 1, 2015

2013 WV Winner, NG Innovations

2013 WV Winner, NG Innovations

Are you a researcher, entrepreneur, or small business in Pennsylvania or West Virginia focused on developing a new product or service for the shale energy space?  Applications are now being accepted for the 4th Annual Shale Gas Innovation Contest, which provides up to $100,000 in cash awards toshale gas-oriented innovations, new product ideas, or service concepts.

The program, which focuses on business concepts that are in the development stage or recently launched, is open to small businesses, researchers, entrepreneurs or innovators working in the shale gas space in Pennsylvania or West Virginia. A simple online application can be found at

This traditional Pennsylvania event has been expanded to include West Virginia thanks to a grant from the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation.  TechConnect WV is a key partner in West Virginia creating visibility within the entrepreneurial community.

“This is a great opportunity to get WV innovators and small companies terrific exposure with the Shale Gas Industry, not only within the Marcellus play but across the country,” Said Anne Barth, TCWV Executive Director.  Also assisting with promotional efforts in West Virginia are the INNOVA Commercialization Group and West Virginia University.

The Ben Franklin Shale Gas Innovation and Commercialization Center announced recently the opening of the 2015 contest, which will award a total of $100,000 in cash prizes to four winners.  The awards will be presented during an event that will take place in May 2015. In addition to the cash prizes, successful applicants will gain exposure to investors, potential partners, and industry sponsors.

Bill Hall, Director of the SGICC noted, “We continue to be amazed by the rapid pace of innovation adoption across the shale energy play. Entrepreneurs along with many small businesses are playing a significant role, developing new technologies or offering existing products or services already in use in other areas, now being incorporated in to various aspects of the shale energy play. Through the contest SGICC shines a light on the best new innovations being developed in our region.”

This 4th Annual Shale Gas Innovation Contest is co-sponsored by Ben Franklin Technology Partners (, AquaTech (, Chevron Technology Ventures (, CONSOL Energy (, First National Bank ( ), GE Oil & Gas (, INABATA America Corporation (, Little Pine Resources (, the Marcellus Shale Coalition (, PPG Industries (, Praxair (, Range Resources (, Shell (, Steptoe & Johnson PLLC ( ),Williams (,  and XTO Energy (

Entering the competition is easy, requiring the completion of a simple online application found at Any idea or already commercialized product or service related to the shale energy space is eligible. Examples include natural gas or NGL utilization products/services, novel materials or chemicals to enhance performance or, for instance prevent corrosion or improve product yield, remote site monitoring technologies, well pad EH&S products or services, natural gas or NGL conversion technologies, and water management or remediation technologies.

Finalists will be chosen by a panel of industry experts. To download an application, visit and click on the $100,000 Shale Gas Innovation Contest tab.  Deadline to enter is February 1, 2015.

For details regarding eligibility or other questions, contact Bill Hall at either 814-933-8203 or