GlobalHack to offer $1 million to hackathon winners | St. Louis Public Radio

GlobalHack to offer $1 million to hackathon winners

Feb 25, 2016

GlobalHack VI will likely get attention in the computer programming world.

The St. Louis-based hackathon is offering a total of $1 million in cash prizes, making it one of the few hackathons in the U.S. to put up that kind of money.

"There have only been two hackathons in the history of hackathons that have put on an event with $1 million in cash," said Global Hack executive director Matt Menietti. "Those were by Salesforce a couple years ago, so we’re certainly in a different league now."

Hackathons give coders, designers, and technologists a chance to collaborate and solve problems. Menietti said he expects this event will attract teams from around the world.

Credit (Courtesy GlobalHack)

"It’s an opportunity for St. Louis to step up its game to say 'hey, we’re all about building great things and taking on big challenges and we can do that just as well as any other city,'" he said.

GlobalHack anticipates more than 2,500 participants will descend on St. Louis University’s Chaifetz Arena on Oct. 21-23. The university’s John Cook School of Business is the title sponsor for the hackathon.

The $1 million in prizes will be divided among Youth, College and Professional divisions. Menietti said the event will focus on solving a real-world, civic-minded problem similar to its last event.

The funding will be awarded to winning teams and used to help create start-ups for the top products.

"We want to ensure that the prototypes created at our events don’t just sit on a shelf," Menietti said, "so we’re providing cash incentives for teams to continue working and implementing their project after GlobalHack VI is over."

Both the amount of prize money and size of the event is a big leap for GlobalHack. The organization has awarded a total of $225,000 in cash prizes and recruited 728 participants over its last five events.

Now, GlobalHack events will be on a different scale.

Follow Maria on Twitter: @radioaltman