US Partnership for Assured Electronics (USPAE) Rules and Participant Agreement ("Agreement") apply specifically to the Defense Business Accelerator Microelectronics Challenge ("Challenge"). In order to participate in this Challenge, each legal entity meeting the requirements of Section 4 below (hereinafter "You" or "Participant") is required to have its relevant personnel read and understand the terms of this Agreement and the Supplementary Guidance ("Guidance") published on the Challenge website.
Organizer and Sponsor. US Partnership for Assured Electronics ("USPAE" or "Organizer") is the administrator for this Challenge. The US Department of Defense ("DOD" or "Sponsor") is the Sponsor for this Challenge.
1. LEGAL TERMS: (a) This Challenge is governed solely by this Agreement and Guidance.
(b) By submitting an Entry ("Entry", "Response", "Submission") to this Challenge, you agree to be bound by the agreement and guidance, which together constitute a binding agreement between the Participant and the Organizer. DOD is a third-party beneficiary of this Challenge. By your entry and participation in the challenge you agree to be bound by these rules.
c) It is the Participant's responsibility to remain informed as to any changes to the Agreement and Guidance. In the event of any question or matter arising out of any point not expressly provided for in the website pages, the decision of the Organizer shall be final. In the event of any dispute regarding webpage content, or any matter relating to the Challenge, the Organizer's decision shall be final and unchallengeable, and no correspondence or discussion shall be entered into, comment issued, or reason given in respect of any decision made by the Organizer. Should there be any conflict between this Agreement and Guidance documents, this Agreement takes precedence.
(d) Participants are responsible for compliance with applicable laws and regulations relating to your participation in this Challenge. Participants are responsible for abiding by their employer's policies regarding participation in this Challenge. Participants are responsible for all taxes and reporting related to any award received as part of the Challenge.
Furthermore, all winning entries are subject to verification of eligibility to win awards under federal guidelines. Participants are responsible for ensuring that they and their submission are in full compliance with all relevant local, regional and national regulations. Check with your local authorities concerning questions about your eligibility. Any winning submissions found to be in violation of prize regulations in their locale will be offered the option to be acknowledged as a winner without receiving a cash prize or will be disqualified from the Challenge without exception.
(e) Organizers disclaim any and all liability or responsibility for disputes arising between you, your employer and any other party related to this Challenge on its behalf and that of the Sponsor.
2. PARTICIPANT: Participant is any organization meeting the qualifications in Section 4 below that has authorized its personnel to submit each Entry and is solely responsible to receive all communications from Organizer related to this Challenge and to ensure compliance with this Agreement and Guidance. Those persons submitting an Entry on behalf of a Participant organization represent and warrant that they are employees that have the authority to submit the Entry on behalf of the Participant and to bind the Participant organization to the terms of this agreement.
3. CHALLENGE DATES: To pre-register for this Challenge, all Participants must register on the Defense Business Accelerator Microelectronics Challenge website (https://events.techconnect.org/DTCFall/DBX/). Pre-registration is not required for participation in the Challenge but allows Participants to provide Organizer with notice of Participant's interest and join a mailing list to remain informed of Challenge-related announcements.
To be considered a participant in the Challenge, individuals or teams must submit their organization's non-confidential response via the Challenge website. No other means of entry will be considered.
The Challenge website will open to submission on 9/21/2023 7:00 am ET. All Entries must be received electronically as indicated on the Challenge website by Thursday, 10/12/2023 8:00 pm ET. Late Entries will not be considered. Dates are subject to change.
4. ELIGIBILITY: Participation in the Challenge is free and open to all commercial, companies organized in the United States. Participants must not be operating under Foreign Ownership, Control or Influence (FOCI). A company is considered to be operating under FOCI whenever a foreign interest has the power, direct or indirect, whether or not exercised, and whether or not exercisable, to direct or decide matters affecting the management or operations of that company in a manner which may result in unauthorized access to sensitive information or may adversely affect the performance of Government contracts.
Members of the Challenge's Judging Panel are not eligible to submit an entry for this Challenge.
You may not submit a project under this Challenge for which the same or similar project has received Government funding. Please consult our FAQ here. For any legal advice, please consult your legal counsel.
Employees and family members of the Organizer (USPAE), its contractors (TechConnect, and Advanced Technology International) and any of their respective affiliates and subsidiaries are not eligible to enter this Challenge.
5. HOW TO ENTER: To enter, you must submit an Entry through the designated Challenge Submission Page on the Challenge website. The Challenge website will provide further instructions, requirements, criteria, fillable fields, uploads and other details regarding the required submission format. All Entries must be in English, without exception. Where applicable, Entry attachments may be submitted in .pdf, .xls, .xlsx, .doc, docx, .ppt, .pptx, or .mp4 formats.
All Entries must be submitted through the Challenge website submission page by: Completing all fields of the submission (or registration) form; Uploading required files via the provided upload field at the time the Entry is submitted; Completing submission by clicking the "Submit" button.
To be eligible to participate, a complete and compliant submission must be received electronically as indicated on the Challenge website by 8:00 pm ET on Thursday, 10/12/2023. Late Entries will not be considered. Dates are subject to change.
Entries submitted in any other manner than that described above shall be considered ineligible. Organizers will not accept any Entries or attachments submitted via email, physical mail, courier, fax or otherwise, or that are submitted beyond the deadline.
Multiple entries are permitted. Entries will be reviewed independently and shall have no bearing on the review of additional Entries submitted by the Participant, except in the case of a breach of this Agreement resulting in a disqualification of the Participant.
By submitting an Entry, you agree that (a) all required fields are complete and all information in your Entry is correct and accurate; and (b) your registration may be rejected or terminated, and all Entries submitted by you may be disqualified if any of the information provided is (or the Organizer has reasonable grounds to believe it is) incomplete, incorrect or inaccurate. All Participants are solely responsible for their Entry. All registration information is deemed collected in the U.S.
The Organizer is not responsible for: (a) late, lost, stolen, damaged, garbled, incomplete, incorrect or misdirected Entries or other communications; (b) errors, omissions, interruptions, deletions, defects, or delays in operations or transmission of information, in each case whether arising by way of technical or other failures or malfunctions of computer hardware, software, communications devices, or transmission lines; or (c) data corruption, theft, destruction, unauthorized access to or alteration of Entry materials, loss or otherwise.
The Organizer is not responsible for electronic communications or emails which are undeliverable as a result of any form of active or passive filtering of any kind, or insufficient space in any email account to receive email messages. The Organizer disclaims any liability for damage to any computer system resulting from participation in or accessing or downloading of information in connection with the Challenge.
Participants are solely responsible for all equipment, expenses, resources, insurance and/or costs incurred by or on behalf of any Participant while participating in the Challenge.
By submitting an entry for the challenge, you accept the conditions stated in this agreement and guidance, agree to be bound by the decisions of the organizer and the judging panel and warrant that you are eligible to participate in the challenge. If you do not accept these rules, do not enter the challenge. We recommend that you print a copy of this agreement and guidance for your future reference.
6. ENTRY CRITERIA GUIDELINES: Entry guidelines and descriptions of all items and information required to complete an Entry for the Challenge are available on the Challenge webpage. See the Challenge webpage for additional details.
7. CHALLENGE JUDGING: Entries submitted to the Challenge will be evaluated by a panel comprised of individuals who are competent in the subject matter of the Challenge (the "Judging Panel" or "Judges"). Organizer reserves the right to assign or remove Judges at any time.
Organizer is under no obligation to notify Participants of any changes to the Judging Panel. Organizer is under no obligation to disclose any information about any Judges.
Entries will be evaluated based on compliance with the Challenge requirements, Entry criteria, and with the information provided on the Challenge webpage. Judging of Entries will occur after the Challenge Entry deadline and will be completed in advance of the announcement of any winners. All decisions of the Judging Panel, including any decisions to name no winners, will be final and binding on all matters relating to this Challenge.
The judging criteria is available on the challenge website.
Judging: Starting 10/13/2023, the panel of Judges will judge eligible Entries based on the criteria listed on the challenge website and select the semi-finalists to complete a Fluency Score assessment. Starting on or around 10/25/2023, the panel of Judges will select the finalists of the Challenge (the "Finalists"). All evaluations and judging will take place inside the United States of America, without exception.
The Finalists will be the entries with the highest total points. In the event of a tie, the Judges will re-judge the tied entries using the Criteria until such time as finalists are determined. The Judges' decision will be final and binding. The Finalists will be notified by 10/26/2023. Finalists will be required to join USPAE and The Defense Electronics Consortium (DEC), at no cost, in order to expedite awards following the pitch competition. Participants may join the USPAE and DEC by applying for membership at USPAE.ORG/MEMBERSHIP. Finalists may need to register or update their registrations with the Government (UEI, CAGE) to join the Defense Electronics Consortium and to receive an award if selected.
Finalists will pitch their solutions to a panel of Judges at Defense TechConnect Innovation Summit and Expo in November in National Harbor, Maryland. Judges will select up to ten (10) winners of the Challenge (the "Winners"). The Judges decision will be final and binding.
8. AWARDS: The Winners will be notified by email December 8, 2023. The Organizer will announce the Challenge Winners and their respective Challenge award ("Award") via the Challenge website by December 20, 2023 at 7 pm ET.
Funds will be awarded according to the following:
Up to ten (10) companies will be awarded between $500,000 and $2,000,000 each.
As required for all funding awarded through the Defense Electronics Consortium, a 2% project award fee will be collected by the Consortium. Award amounts will be increased in order to cover the 2% fee, so that the awardees' funding is not impacted. Awardees will be invoiced the 2% fee towards the funding awarded through this challenge. This fee covers the costs associated with operations of the Consortium and benefits provided to its members, including the following: administrative and member support activities, industry days, membership meetings, business development, customer outreach, training, process improvement initiatives, and website management. In addition to the foregoing member benefits, the fee supports member-only access to the growing USPAE/DEC data repository with enhanced member networking capability.
There is no offer of a royalty, or other financial compensation implied beyond the award described above. No costs or expenses of a Participant for any aspect of this Challenge will be paid by the Organizer. Each Award Winner is responsible for any and all tax reporting obligations and any and all tax payments as applicable.
9. VERIFICATION OF WINNERS: Participants are eligible to win multiple Awards provided that the Entries are clearly distinguishable as novel and different from one another as determined by the Judging Panel.
Winning the awarded funding is contingent upon returning a signed Project Agreement. Failure to sign and return all such requested documentation by the return date specified by the Organizer after notification of winning an Award will result in forfeiture of the Award and the subsequent selection of an alternate potential Winner. Each Winner must comply with all the terms and conditions on the challenge website and Project Agreement.
Finalists will be contacted on or about 10/27/2023 to provide any proof of eligibility if required. All Semi-Finalists, Finalists, and Winners will be notified by the e-mail address provided in the Entry. A return of a Semi-Finalist or Finalist notification as "undeliverable" will result in disqualification. The Organizer reserves the right to examine Entries for compliance with the rules and guidelines. Failure of a Participant to demonstrate eligibility will result in disqualification.
No substitution or transfer of Award is permitted.
10. INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY (IP) RIGHTS: By submitting an Entry you represent that:
The Entry is the original work of the Participant organization named in the Entry on whose behalf it is being submitted; You have authority, warrant, and have sufficient rights to submit the Entry on behalf of the identified Participant. Use of the Entry for this Challenge does not trigger any financial liability for Organizer or Sponsor. Participant shall indemnify and hold harmless Organizer for any claim arising out its duties as required by the Sponsor and occasioned by a breach of any of the representations in this Section.
By accepting any Challenge award, each Participant thereby agrees to use of its name, city/state, and/or Challenge award information, a synopsis of the Entry by Sponsor or Organizer solely on behalf of the Sponsor, for promotional purposes in conjunction with this Challenge in any medium without additional compensation.
Use of Marks: Except as expressly set forth herein Participants shall not use the names, trademarks, service marks, seals, logos, insignias, trade dress, or any other designation of source or origin subject to legal protection, copyrighted material or similar IP ("Marks") of Organizer or Sponsors in any way without such party's prior written permission in each instance, which such party may grant or withhold in its sole and absolute discretion.
11. CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION: You acknowledge that your Entry may be the subject of a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. You acknowledge that any and all information included in your submission materials is non-confidential and non-proprietary in nature. You acknowledge that inclusion of any materials identified as "confidential" or "proprietary" or deemed to be such by the Organizer will result in immediate disqualification of that submission from consideration in the Challenge. You acknowledge that the Organizer may share the details of your Entry with designated third parties (e.g., Sponsor, Judges) for purposes as described in this Agreement and Challenge announcement.
By participating and submitting an entry, Participant expressly consents and agrees that Organizer and any other participating parties are authorized to contact Participant via email or any other form of media to make participant aware of information pertinent to the Challenge, and to distribute information regarding the Organizer featured products, special events or offers, or purchase incentives, provided Participant has opted-in to receive such information. Participants may opt-out of any further email communication at any time by simply following the provided opt-out instructions in email.
13. WARRANTIES: By submitting an Entry, you represent and warrant that, the Entry: does not contain malicious code, viruses, malware, timebombs, cancelbots, worms, Trojan horses or other potentially harmful programs or other material or information; and Submission of the Entry does not violate applicable law or regulation.
A breach of any warranty or representation may result in the corresponding Entry being invalidated and/or Participant being disqualified under this Challenge.
14. RELEASE AND LIMITATION OF LIABILITY:
(a) Release: By participating in the Challenge, Participant agrees to release and hold harmless the Sponsor, Organizer, and their respective parent companies, subsidiaries, affiliates, suppliers, distributors, contractors, advertising agencies, prize providers, and each of their respective officers, directors, employees, and agents (collectively, the "Released Parties") from and against any claim or cause of action, including, but not limited to, personal injury, death, or damage to or loss of property, arising out of participation in the Challenge or receipt or use or misuse of an Award or any other prize associated with the Challenge. Except where prohibited, participation in the Challenge constitutes the consent of a Winner to the Organizer's and Sponsor's and their representatives' or agents' use of the Winner's organizational and relevant employees' name, likeness, photograph, voice, opinions, biographical data, and/or contact information for promotional and other internal or external marketing purposes in any media, worldwide, without further compensation.
(b) Limitation of Liability: The Released Parties are not responsible for: (i) lost, late, stolen, misdirected, damaged, illegible, incomplete, garbled, or undelivered entries; (ii) fraud, technical problems, failures, malfunctions, or for any other technical problems or malfunctions associated with any telephone lines, computer systems, servers, provider hardware/software, lost or unavailable network connections or failed, incomplete, garbled or delayed computer transmissions or any combination thereof; (iii) any damage to any Participant's computer system/software related to or resulting from any participation or activity in connection with the Challenge; or (iv) any incorrect or inaccurate information provided, published, or printed or any other factor beyond the Organizer's control that impairs the integrity or proper functioning of the Challenge as determined by Organizer in its sole discretion. The released parties make no warranty, guaranty, or representation of any kind concerning the award (or any portion thereof), and disclaim any implied warranty.
15. NO OBLIGATION: You acknowledge that multiple Participants may submit Entries that contain concepts, approaches, or technologies similar to your Entry and that the Organizer, Sponsor, and/or their respective subsidiaries and partners may already be investigating or developing solutions or have business activities that are related to or similar to those disclosed in your Entry. You acknowledge that Organizer's actions with respect to another Entry or one of its own solutions, investigations, or business activities, even if similar to your Entry, shall not create any liability of any kind by Organizer to you or others. Further, the Organizer is not or shall not be restricted in any way from pursuing, developing, or commercializing, in any way that they see fit, independent of you and at its sole discretion, any activity or technology that is created independent of your Entry. For the avoidance of doubt, you acknowledge that the Organizer is not obligated to take any action whatsoever with regard to your Entry.
16. SEVERABILITY: The invalidity or unenforceability of any provision of this Agreement and Guidance shall not affect the validity or enforceability of any other provision. In the event that any provision is determined to be invalid or otherwise unenforceable or illegal, this Agreement and Guidance shall otherwise remain in effect and be construed in accordance with their terms as if the invalid or illegal provision was not contained herein.
17. WAIVER: Under no circumstance will a participant be permitted to obtain awards for, and each participant hereby waives all rights to claim, punitive, incidental, consequential, or any other damages (including attorneys' fees), or any other actual out-of-pocket expenses.
18. ENTIRE AGREEMENT: This is the parties' entire Agreement on this matter, superseding all previous negotiations or agreements and can only be modified by written agreement.
19. APPLICABLE LAW: You agree that this Agreement and Guidance and the relationship between you and Organizers shall be governed and construed under the laws of Washington, D.C., U.S. Any action against the Sponsor is subject to Federal law. You acknowledge and agree that all aspects and content of your Entry, including all information, developments, inventions, and works of authorship, shall be treated as if made in the U.S. and U.S. laws relating to patents, inventions, assignments, and innovation compensation shall supersede the relevant laws of any country in which the Entry may have been conceived, developed, or reduced to practice.
Each Participant agrees that: (i) any and all disputes, claims, or causes of action arising out of or connected with the Challenge or any Award shall be resolved individually, without resort to any form of class action, and exclusively by the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.
20. CONTEST RESULTS: The official winners list will be published on USPAE.ORG and the challenge website by 7 pm ET on December 20, 2023.
21. ORGANIZER ADDRESS: USPAE, 1331 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Suite 625S, Washington, D.C. 20004
No purchase or payment necessary to enter or win. A purchase will not increase your chances of winning. odds of winning will depend on the total number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited by law. Participants waive the ability to bring claims in a class action format.
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