Built on the belief that big ideas and the entrepreneurs behind them deserve to be celebrated, the award show will raise a glass to all Nashville’s top entrepreneurs, visionaries, disruptors, and game-changers, accelerating Middle Tennessee’s economy.
November 6, 2019
2019 Award Categories
Entertainment, Sports, and Media: Businesses operating in any areas of the entertainment, sports, and media industries.
Healthcare: Businesses operating in any areas of the healthcare industry.
Products and Services: Businesses offering goods and services that target a consumer or business market. From main street retail to wall street business services, your company is driving growth.
Social Enterprise and Sustainability: Businesses that address a basic unmet human need, solve a social problem, or prioritize reducing environmental impact through a market-driven approach. Nonprofit, Not-For-Profit, and For-Profit social enterprises qualify.
Technology: Businesses whose primary offering is a technology product, service, or tech-enabled service. Hardware and software offerings qualify.
All of the above categories have two awards given:
Startup: Businesses 5 years old or younger
Market Mover: Businesses older than 5 years
Other Award Criteria:
Business must be headquartered in Middle Tennessee
Prior Year Finalists may apply for any applicable category
Prior year winners are ineligible to apply in the same category as prior year
Both quantitative and qualitative information will be used in judging
Entrepreneur of 2019: Awarded to an entrepreneur for their contribution to the development of the entrepreneurial ecosystem. This award considers both past entrepreneurial success and efforts cultivating the larger entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Young Entrepreneur of 2019: Awarded to an Entrepreneur under 30 running a business in any industry. This award utilizes the same criteria as the industry awards.
Corporate Ambassador of the Year: Awarded to a business for its cultivation of the larger entrepreneurial ecosystem. Such activities include, but are not limited to: supporting entrepreneurial education and training for their own employees; running entrepreneur-friendly business practices such as pitch events, pilot programs, or other activities; committing time and resources to supporting entrepreneurs or organizations that support entrepreneurs.
Navigation Partner of the Year: Awarded to an Entrepreneurial Support Organization (ESO) for their contribution to the development of the entrepreneurial ecosystem. ESO’s are organizations whose primary purpose is to help entrepreneurs succeed. The Nashville Entrepreneur Center cannot qualify for, or win, this award.
2019 Chairs and Committee Members:
Max Goldberg, CoOwner of Strategic Hospitality
Dee Anna Smith, CEO of Sarah Cannon
John Zarling, Music industry Executive
Game Changer Sponsor
About the NEXT Awards + EntrepreneurS’ Hall of Fame
The NEXT Awards recognize the entrepreneurs, startups, and entrepreneurial-minded businesses who make a significant impact on the economy in Middle Tennessee. All stages of companies, from emerging startups to well-established market movers, are celebrated during this event as contributors to making Nashville one of the best cities in the U.S. to start a business.
Each year the Nashville Entrepreneur Center inducts a new class into its Entrepreneurs' Hall of Fame. This honor celebrates visionary business leaders and companies who have laid a foundation of support and helped foster entrepreneurship in Nashville. These innovative leaders have made an indelible mark on Music City and represent both the great past and bright future of Nashville.