Terms and Conditions

Intellectual Property

Intellectual Property (IP) rights exist to protect the expression of your ideas and allow you to control the ways your ideas are utilized. The PETE Prize Award competition will be governed by the FIT Intellectual Property Policy.


NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement): All participating students are required to consent to the NDA and MAY NOT share startup materials with anyone outside of their team, including faculty and staff, advisors and coaches. Only the team members may see the decks and any other materials shared by the startups. Students can ask advisors and coaches about the industry, the market fit, etc., but may not share any specific proprietary information from the deck, in particular but not limited to revenue projections, valuation expectations, previous fundraising and cap tables. Participant’s executive summaries and business plans will only be seen by the award review committee. Neither of these documents will be distributed unless explicit permission is received from the team. As the competition is an open event, FIT is not able to require audience members to sign non-disclosure agreements.

Grand Prize Award Details

The winning team's business receives seed funding of $30,000 which will only be issued to a duly registered United States business entity. Business formation may take any lawful form related to a New York business entity or identity including a local D/B/A or state-level corporate structure such as an LLC, C corporation, partnership, etc. FIT will be identified as a minority investment participant with a nominal participation agreement. FIT will have a limited ownership interest in the winning team’s legal entity but will not be permitted to have a controlling interest. In the event that additional capital is subsequently infused into the business entity after the grand prize award is distributed, FIT has the right, but not an obligation, to invest an amount up to the amount needed to maintain its equivalent pro-rata percentage equity interest. Distribution of the award balance occurs as the winning team achieves business specific milestones, which are pre-approved by the DTech Lab within 30 days of the award announcement. The winning company receives $10,000 of their award upon the completed registration of the business entity. $10,000 is awarded upon confirmation of product market fit, competitive market analysis, validation of target audience and establishing unmet need. The $10,000 balance is awarded upon creation of prototypes, development of the production and distribution plan, e-commerce implementation and completion of the live-shopping event production plan, as applicable. Business specific milestones will be developed within six (6) weeks of the award announcement. If all requirements for the grand prize are not met within twelve (12) months of the award announcement, the award will be forfeited. All awards are subject to applicable taxes and withholdings. The winning team will be provided office space in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, or such other location that may subsequently be made available to them. Possession of the office space is for a period not to exceed one year.

Award Evaluation Panel

Judging panels are composed of a mix of investors and industry experts including venture capitalists, angel investors, academic subject matter experts, investment bankers, experienced entrepreneurs, and leaders from the business community. Applicants will be disqualified if they attempt to approach a judge, or have someone do that on their behalf, in connection with the competition. The decisions of the judges are final, including interpretation of the rules and allocation of prizes.

Competition Round (10 teams)

The evaluation criteria is a combination of the applicant’s personal qualities (passion, empathy, tenacity, enthusiasm), experience and vision (personal and professional), in combination with the articulation of a business proposal. The proposal represents a for-profit business idea, distinctive in the demonstration of creativity and imaginative qualities. The idea includes a focus on art, business, design, mass communication and technology connected to the fashion industry and which promote FIT’s core values of innovation, sustainability and diversity.

Grand Prize Award

The award evaluation committee evaluates the teams based on creative and business criteria including the followings.

Demonstration of the market opportunity: a clear market need and a plan to take advantage of the need.

Competitive advantage: the product or service is something unique that has a protectable competitive advantage in the proposed market.

Management capability: the team has the potential skills and experience to develop this venture and address the associated risks.

Financial understanding: the team has a solid understanding of the financial requirements of the venture.

Roadmap/growth strategy: the team has engaged in short- and long-term planning and has considered strategies for growth.

Sustainable business model: the team understands and can communicate their core business model. They are likely to develop a sustainable venture.The award evaluation committee evaluates the teams based on creative and business criteria including the followings.

A multi-tiered evaluation criteria is applied to several topics including: creativity, execution and financial strategy, market and customer knowledge and team composition:


Execution and financial strategy / assessment of the plan for the execution of the business idea and for financial funding:

Market and customer knowledge / assessing the reflection of market and customer knowledge in the business plan:

Team composition, chemistry and commitment / assessment of the team’s strengths, weaknesses, and viability: