New York City has just recently announced the H.E.L.M (Hire + Expand in Lower Manhattan) contest, its latest initiative to bring more startups into Manhattan’s growing tech scene, which promises up to $1.2M in funds to startups looking to reside in Lower Manhattan.

Sponsored by NYCEDC, LMDC and HR&A, this contest is one piece of a much larger goal spearheaded by NY: to rapidly boost the city’s tech scene through public and private efforts. What’s interesting about H.E.L.M, however, is its substantial prize and the target goal of growing the startup and tech presence in Wall St. territory, an area that has long been dominated by the financial sector.

Diving into the contest, NY is looking for companies that will fit within the following categories: “Startups, Creative Services, Technology, & ‘New‘ New Yorkers.” Up to 20 finalists will be selected by a Committee of “high profile leaders,” including David Tisch (formerly of TechStars), and will receive $10,000 each. Then, up to 4 winners that follow through and sign leases within the next year will receive $250,000 each (20 max finalists * $10,000 + 4 winners * $250,000 = $1.2M).

The competition recognizes that a growing technology and creative sector is crucial to creating a strong, diverse economy and seeks to ensure that New York remains the best place to launch and grow new businesses, attract talent, and create value. By recognizing a select group of businesses poised for growth, Take the H.E.L.M. will advance Lower Manhattan’s evolving profile as a global hub of innovation and ensure its continued growth and success.

zonemap 520x535 NYC launches new contest to bring more startups into Wall St. territory, promises up to $1.2M

With the high rent prices of areas like Lower Manhattan (and Midtown, Flatiron, etc), it’s clear that NY is placing major bets on startups, but that this contest is not exactly targeting smaller players. If you’re interested in applying and learning more, check out the link below:

➤ H.E.L.M

Image credit: Mario Tama/Getty Images