(Portland, ME) The Maine Center for Entrepreneurs (MCE) and its partners the University of Maine, FocusMaine, Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI), the Harold Alfond Institute for Business Innovation and Lewiston/Auburn Metro Chamber, announced that applications are now being accepted for Top Gun, Maine’s premiere entrepreneurship acceleration program that has helped more than 250 startups since 2009.

Top Gun fast-tracks the progress of Maine’s most promising early stage, high-growth potential companies through a combination of mentoring, learning sessions, and networking. The highly selective program will accept close to 60 companies in total, 8-12 companies in each of the 2020 locations: Portland, Bangor, Lewiston/Auburn, Waterville and Brunswick. Thanks to support from FocusMaine and GMRI, Brunswick will be the site of two separate Top Gun cohorts. One group will be focused on companies in the aquaculture sector and a second,  from the craft beverage sector.  

In addition to submitting a short online application, prospective companies will be required to submit a pitch deck and present a live pitch to the interview committee in the location they apply.

The program will conclude with regional pitch off events where the top two finishers in each region will move on to compete in the Top Gun Showcase for a $25,000 cash prize sponsored by the Maine Technology Institute.

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About Top Gun:

Top Gun is a 15-week business development pitch program designed for entrepreneurs across any industry looking to grow their startup or early stage business. Former Top Gun graduate companies include Garbage to Garden, Pika, Bixby & Co., My Body Model and Flowfold. Neuright and Sticky Sweet, were 2019’s Top Gun Showcase winners. Top Gun companies have competed in the CleanTech Open and MassChallenge. Many receive funding from the Maine Technology Institute, Maine Angels, and various venture capital firms. The Maine Center for Entrepreneurs Top Gun program is supported by FocusMaine, the Maine Technology Institute, Gulf of Maine Research Institute, Preti Flaherty, and the Upstart Center for Entrepreneurship. Other corporate sponsors, local businesses, partner organizations, program advisors and mentors also contribute to the success of the program. Visit us at: https://www.mced.biz/top-gun/ to learn more and view our application.

About MCE:

Founded in 1997, MCE is an independent non-profit organization based in Portland that helps the most promising Maine companies launch and grow through mentoring, training and connections. MCE is a founding organizational partner of Maine Accelerates Growth. https://www.mced.biz./