Are you searching for funding at slightest chance?
Have you reached a point where you will accept any funder for your business idea?
Are you in the process of applying for funding?
Stop! You could be falling for a funding trap
In August 2013, Telkom launched the Mega Challenge at the Innovation Summit. They invited literally everyone, from entrepreneurs to academics to provide proposals with innovative ideas and solutions. Up for grabs was R 200 000 in prizes, including cold cash and internet services. The challenge garnered considerable attention until something went wrong.
Most people blindly enter these types of competition without reading the fine print. Fortunately Arthur Attwell did and shared his findings over here.
In a nutshell, unsuspecting entrants did not know that just by entering the competition, they would be handing over their innovation, lock, stock and barrel to Telkom. It did not matter whether they won or lost, they effectively gave up legal rights to their innovation. It was buried in the fine print.
Telkom subsequently retracted and discarded those terms and conditions of entry.
Before you apply
Before you apply, it is worthwhile to
- Read, reread and read again, the fine print
- Get a legal professional to read the contract.
- Check what happens if you enter the competition and (1) Win or (2) Lose
- Register your IP ahead of entry, not afterwards
- Seriously think about whether your idea is worth RX in the event that you won
Otherwise, DON’T APPLY!