Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship (Rice Alliance)

The Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship (Rice Alliance) is Rice University’s nationally-recognized initiative devoted to the support of technology commercialization, entrepreneurship education, and the launch of technology companies.  Since opening in 2000, the Rice Alliance has assisted more than 2,500 new technology companies.  In 2019 and 2020, it was honored as the #1 Best U.S. Graduate Entrepreneurship Program by the Princeton Review and Entrepreneur magazine. 

Rice Alliance hosts three Venture forums. The Energy Technology Venture Forum is the premier energy tech venture capital conference to connect energy innovators, investors, corporations, and the energy ecosystem.   The Texas Digital Summit is the state’s leading conference on transformative digital strategies for enterprise and industrial innovation, and brings together industry experts, entrepreneurs, investors, academicians, and emerging technology companies and connects capital, customers, and innovators in one location. The Texas Life Science Forum is the premier life science event in Texas that draws members from industry, emerging life science companies, academics, and investors.   

In addition, Rice Alliance organizes a number of annual competitions aimed at providing professional development and networking opportunities to emerging businesses. The Rice Business Plan Competition (RBPC) is the world’s largest and richest student startup competition. The RBPC invites top graduate-level teams from around the world to compete for funding, receive mentoring, and make valuable connections with entrepreneurs and investors.  The event is sponsored by more than 185 corporations, government, and private organizations. The Venture Day@CERAWeek pitch competition invites selected emerging energy technology companies to present a 4-minute pitch on their companies at the Cambridge Energy Research Associates (CERA) conference.Energy Venture Day at the Offshore Technology Conference (OTC)  showcases 2 ½ minute pitches from selected companies and invites all selected ventures to meet with investors during the Rice Alliance Energy Tech Venture Forum. Lastly, the Startup Village for Petroleum Engineers at the Society for Petroleum Engineers Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition (SPE ATCE), showcases emerging energy technology companies who give 5-8 minute presentations to investors and leaders; presenters have the opportunity to ask questions and gain insights from veteran entrepreneurs and experts on building their startups.

Rice Alliance also fosters early stage energy startups through the 12-week Rice Alliance Clean Energy Accelerator which provides access to a network of energy corporations, investors, and advisors, and personalized mentorship. Notably, the Alliance seeks to ignite a passion for entrepreneurship within the Rice community by providing hands-on entrepreneurship experiences and a roadmap from innovation to commercialization through the OwlSpark Accelerator, a partnership between Rice and Texas A &M University which provides an intense, immersive summer experience for startup teams.  The program culminates in the Bayou Startup Showcase annual pitch event at which OwlSpark, and University of Houston’s Red Labs Accelerator, teams present their projects.  



Last updated:  July 2021.