For most entrepreneurs and small businesses, the Federal government has useful programs and services, but it can be hard to identify, engage and navigate Federal websites.  Often, small businesses do not know that the Federal government already offers a program that they would find useful.  Entrepreneurs and small businesses need better tools to navigate the Federal government’s vast resources – including programs, services, and procurement opportunities.  The goal of the Apps for Entrepreneurs is to give small businesses and entrepreneurs those better tools through this challenge format.

Hackathon Sponsors


$20,000 in prizes

First Place [1 Prize at $5,000]

Second Place [3 Prizes at $3,000] (3)

Third Place [3 Prizes at $2,000] (3)

Devpost Achievements

Submitting to this hackathon could earn you:

How to enter

To enter, participants should develop an innovative application designed for the Web, a personal computer, a mobile handheld device, console, or any platform broadly accessible on the open internet that utilizes data which is freely available on Federal government websites.  

The Apps submitted for this Competition must use data from at least one of the following sources: Small Business Administration; Small Business Innovation Research Program; Green Government Opportunities for Small Business or  

Participants should then register for and submit through The submission should include the app's URL and a short description.


Jonathan Aberman
Managing Director at Amplifier Ventures

Jack Bienko

Jack Bienko
Deputy Director of Office of Entrepreneurship Education, Small Business Administration

Peter Corbett

Peter Corbett
CEO at iStrategy Labs

Julie Fajgenbaum

Julie Fajgenbaum
Vice President, Brand and Social Media at American Express OPEN

Sean Greene

Sean Greene
Associate Administrator for Investment and Special Advisor for Innovation, Small Business Administration

Alex Howard
Government 2.0 Correspondent at O'Reilly Media

Gwynne Kostin

Gwynne Kostin
Director, Mobile of the Office of Citizen Services & Innovative Technologies at the U.S. General Services Administration

Craig Newmark
Founder of craigslist and craigconnects

Nandita Pinisetti

Nandita Pinisetti
Senior Marketing Manager for Developer and Platform Evangelism at Microsoft

Steve Ressler

Steve Ressler
Founder and President of GovLoop

Justin Thorp
Marketing Manager at HelloWallet

Judging Criteria

  • Mission and Impact [25%]
    Does the application meet the goals of the Apps for Entrepreneurs Challenge? The application will be rated on the strength of its potential to make Federal government programs and information more useful to small businesses.
  • Creativity [25%]
    Is the application innovative, creative and interesting?
  • Use of Required Data [25%]
    Does the application use a combination of creative and relevant Federal data sets, including at least one data set from either;; or Otherwise, is there an explanation?
  • Technical Implementation [25%]
    Is the application functional, well designed, and simple to use? It is accessible to a wide range of users including those with disabilities?

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