The time has come. Thousands of you voted to narrow it down to the five finalists who will be competing for a $500,000 investment. Register below to join us at the Boulder Theater on April 4th to see who takes it all home!

Register to Attend
The application period for
Barnburner has ended.
Stay tuned, Round One kicks off
February 8th, 2023.
Welcome to the Finals!
Below are the five finalists who will be competing for $500,000!


B2B Tech


We're replacing passwords and keys because they're insecure and inconvenient! By 2025, losses due to password-related data breaches are expected to reach $10 Trillion. Everykey is the world's first universal smart key that wirelessly unlocks your phone, computer, and online accounts when you're nearby, then locks them all down when you walk away. Soon it will work with door locks, cars, and other access-controlled devices too!  Our patented technology makes it easy and convenient to stay secure!

Visit us at:

Chris Wentz - Founder


Consumer Tech


SweatPals is a community-building & discovery platform for Fitness & Health. Our mission brings people together around health and creates a sense of belonging through shared human experiences that are also good for our well-being.

Visit us at:

Salar Shahini - Co-founder & CEO




SKNMUSE champions inclusivity and sustainability in luxury beauty with West African-inspired self-care rituals for daily ease and rest. Our vision is to use beauty for daily self-care, offering 30-minute check-ins to recharge individuals who cannot frequently take rests or vacations.

Visit us at:

Ezinne Iroanya - Founder & CEO


Wildcard Category


Farmshare is an online farmers market connecting independent food producers directly with consumers; like Etsy but for food. We provide farmers, ranchers, fishers and other merchants with a cost effective and convenient channel to sell their products online. And we provide consumers with transparency and connection to where their food is coming from. Farmshare is reshaping the future of food: no more mystery meat or waxed apples. Buy better food, straight from the farm.

Visit us at:

Henry Arrowood - Founder & CEO

Grapefruit Health

Other Category


At Grapefruit Health we are addressing the massive staffing shortage in healthcare by creating the first national workforce composed completely of clinical students (ie. social work, pharmacy, pre-med, nursing, etc.). We recruit, train, and manage these students to perform work on behalf of healthcare organizations remotely through our proprietary software. These 1M students create the opportunity for 850M unique patient touch points, and save healthcare workers over 35M hours each year!

Visit us at:

Eric Alvarez - Founder & CEO
Participating VC's
Barnburner has 3 Rounds





All approved startups* will invite their own audiences to endorse them for a chance to participate.

The 75 companies with the most endorsements will advance to the Second Round.

*Pre-seed through Series A. Have either raised money, are revenue generating, or have been reviewed by our investment team.

Public Voting

The 75 startups compete to win the public vote across 1 of 5 categories.*

Founders pitch their startups with a brief overview, a short video and links to their website/socials.

*Categories: B2B Tech, Consumer Tech, CPG, Other, Wildcard.

Final Pitch

The Finalist in each category will travel to Boulder, Colorado to compete in person for the $500K prize from a panel of VC judges.

The event is recorded in front of a live audience and then premiered to a global consumer audience.

Local to Boulder / Denver and want to attend the event? Register here.


You've made it this far. Remember, with Barnburner you can:

  • Engage with your audience and support your mission
  • Get exposure to investors, customers, and partners that could change your trajectory
  • Improve your storytelling skills and hone in how to capture your audience
  • Grow your audience while providing them with a meaningful startup experience
  • Have a chance at being on stage in front of the a massive global audience
  • Give yourself a shot to earn a $500K investment from a VC fund syndicate

With Barnburner, you win no matter the outcome.


What are the dates of the competition?
Round 1 - Endorsements
Feb 3rd: application deadline
Feb 8-14th: endorsements live
Feb 15th: announce winners

Round 2 - Public Voting
Feb 20th:
Round 2 content deadline
Feb 22nd - March 22nd: public voting live
March 24th: announce winners

Round 3 - Final Pitch
April 4th:
Phase 3 live Barnburner pitch
Global Premier: TBD
What do you mean by CONSUMER Pitch competition?
Both B2B and B2C business companies are encouraged to apply. This is a consumer competition in the sense that consumers get to choose the finalists (think American Idol meets Shark Tank).
Do I have to register and apply on Mobile?
We are hosting Barnburner on the Sweater app (both iOS and Android). The registration link will take you to the app store, where you download the app and can jump straight into registration.
What are the terms of the $500k investment?
The investment will be on a SAFE note with fair terms. The winner will negotiate those terms on a case-by-case basis.
What kinds of businesses can apply?
The competition is a good fit for Pre-seed through Series A companies. B2B and consumer companies can all participate - this is only a consumer competition in the sense that consumers get to choose the finalists.

Companies that have not hit meaningful revenue or raised outside investor money are subject to review.
Where do people go to vote on my company?
In Round 1, you share your company link and your audience will download the Sweater mobile app to like your company profile. The link should take them directly to your company profile in the app.

In Round 2, voters go to the Barnburner section of the app where they will be able to vote for their favorite companies for that week.
What are the categories that startups can compete in?
The tentative categories are: B2B Tech, Consumer Tech, CPG, Other, and Wildcard. As we move from Round 1 to Round 2, the advancing companies will be grouped into the various categories, which may be adjusted to create the fairest comparisons.
What does the “Other” category really mean?
The other category is for companies that don’t fit squarely in any of the other categories. For example, a healthtech company could fit better as a B2B tech company, a consumer tech company, or other depending the circumstances. As we move from Round 1 to Round 2, the Other category gives us the flexibility to categorize startups in a way to create the fairest comparisons in the Round 2 - Voting stage of the competition.
What is the “Wildcard” category?
This is a category we set aside for amazing companies that may not get the attention they deserve in Round 1. The Wildcard category is a chance for a few special companies to continue on to Round 2 even if they didn’t get the same number of endorsements as the rest.
How are the 75 companies chosen to advance at the end of Round 1 - Endorsements?
The 60 companies with the most likes or endorsements will automatically advance to Round 2. The Sweater investment team will also select 15 wildcard teams to compete in their own category, regardless of the number of likes their profile received.
How are the final 5 companies chosen to advance at the end of Round 2 - Voting?
In simple terms, the top company of each category advances to the final round of the competition. To narrow from fifteen companies in each category down to one, companies will compete for votes in the Barnburner section of the Sweater mobile app over 4 weeks. See the diagram below for details.
How the final 5 companies are chosen to advance at the end of Round 2
How is the final winner chosen in Round 3 - Live Pitch?
The voting public narrows the startup playing field down to the Top 5 finalists who will appear on the final live stage in Boulder, Colorado. The final investment decision will be made by a panel of VCs who will be front at center at the final event, which include Sweater, Antler, SUM VC, and others.
How much of my time will be required?
For rounds 1 and 2, spending a little time to prepare your content and motivate your audience to vote will make a big difference in your outcome.

Companies that make it to the final event will be asked to spend 2-3 days at our headquarters in Boulder, CO to prepare for and participate in the final pitch event.
What size will the audience be that I’ll have exposure to?
Sweater is starting with an owned audience of 75K people, and an extended audience of another 50K people across social channels. The process of endorsements and pubic voting is expected to bring in tens of thousands of new voters into the Sweater community.
What will I be doing when I’m flown to Colorado?
The week prior to the final pitch event will be filled with pre-recorded video storytelling, pitch coaching, and stage runs for the live event. Founders should expect to spend about 50% of their time in preparation for the final event, and the other 50% still open to run their startup remotely.
What is the structure of the final event?
The final structure of the live event will be released at a later date, but will include live pitches in front of a consumer audience and a panel of VCs, among other segments to the show.
What other VCs are involved outside of Sweater?
Sweater is being accompanied by Antler, SUM VC, and many other investors from across the country. We will continue to add additional partners as they join the competition!
Terms and conditions: Founders are eligible to participate in Barnburner 2023 if they meet the following criteria (1) you register as a founder through the Sweater app during the 1st round enrollment which runs from 12:00am Pacific Time on January 16th, 2023 until 11:59pm Pacific time on February 3rd, 2023. (2) you are currently the founder of a revenue generating company that has raised previous venture or angel funding. (3) you intend to grow or sell your company either through acquisition or IPO at a future date. (4) you are available March 27th - March 29th, 2023 to travel to Boulder, Colorado if you make it to the 3rd round. Sweater reserves the right to request additional documentation for verification before qualifying any company. Sweater may in its sole discretion change the terms and conditions of Barnburner 2023 at any time for any reason.