Ready, Set…Pitch!

If you thrive on competition, Ignite offers something for ideas at all stages. Check out our three contests below to find the right fit. For our on-site showcase, hop over to the demo section to view additional opportunities.

APPLICATIONS OPENING EARLY DEC. 2018

All university startups

The Pitch at Ignite

The Pitch @ Ignite

So you think you’re the best? Come and prove it! Pitch against the best of the best and fight for your university’s honor in international competition. Competitors will pitch to leaders, investors and audience members from around the world.

Application Deadline: Feb. 8, 2018

Who Should Apply

Open to all student-led university startups and teams. Applicants must be:

  • An active, contributing member of the team
  • A founder or co-founder of the company
  • A current undergraduate student, graduate student, or post doc OR a recent graduate. (Current student means enrolled in university in academic year 2017-2018; Recent graduate means an individual who graduated after 1/1/17.)

What to Expect

  • Live semifinal and final rounds will be held at Ignite on March 6th
  • Top 6 teams from the semi-finals advance to the final round and pitch to a panel of investor and 600+ audience members for $15,000 in cash prizes + in-kind services
  • You will have 4 minutes to pitch and 4 minutes for Q&A
  • Slide decks are allowed
  • Teams will table at the reception before The Pitch so plan to bring your entire team

How to apply

  • Non-UC San Diego Students:
    • Contact your university to request a nomination.
    • Partner universities are asked to refer their two budding startups to advance to the semi-final
    • For questions, contact the Ignite team
  • UC San Diego students:
    • Click the “apply” button to access our application portal, Startupwind
    • Create a user profile (or log in)
    • Check your email and validate your account (don’t forget to check your spam if you don’t see the email)
    • Follow the steps to create your profile (you’ll reach a screen that looks like this)
    • Click on the “View” button under “Active UC San Diego Competitions”
    • Click on “Create a New Business Plan” (on the left hand side of the screen)
    • Fill out the Business Plan as much or as little as you’d like.  Remember, this is your application! If you don’t provide much information, it’s unlikely you’ll be invited to the semi-finals!
    • Don’t forget to make your Business Plan public! We can’t review your plan if it’s private so you won’t be invited to compete. Remember not to include confidential information.
    • Look for a message through the Startupwind platform on 2/12/18 to find out if you’ve been selected to compete!
    • Confused? See this business plan example and Startupwind’s tutorial on how to create a business plan.

Prizes 

  • $15,000+ cash prizes
  • In-kind services
  • All applicants receive complimentary Amazon Web Services package

UC San Diego startups

EC Logo Black-White

Elevator Pitch Competition

Open to ideas at any stage, the $10,000 Elevator Pitch Competition is a smaller scale, lighthearted competition designed to inspire young entrepreneurs to pursue their dreams. Teams will craft a 90-second pitch to impress a panel of judges. After the competition, take part in a series of workshops to improve the way you pitch your idea.

Application Deadline: Feb. 8, 2018

Who Should Apply

Open to undergraduates, graduate students, postdocs, and recent alumni (up to one year out of school) from UC San Diego

What to Expect

  • Approximately 25 applicants will be selected to pitch
  • Teams will be notified of their selection in February 2018
  • You will have 90 seconds to pitch
  • No additional materials allowed

How to apply

  • Click the “apply” button to access to be directly to Entrepreneur Challenge’s web page where you’ll find specific step-by-step instructions to guide you through the application process
  • Watch your email for confirmation that your application was received

Prizes

  • Up to $2,500 for first place!
  • All applicants receive complimentary Amazon Web Services package

CaliBaja startups

Startup Battle

Community Startup Battle

Modeled as a rap battle, the Startup Battle is Ignite’s featured community competition, open to ALL startups and founders. This is a fun, fast-paced rap-battle style competition where startups will go head to head with each other and battle it out for bragging rights (and cool prizes)! Wow the audience with your company’s impact, and gain quick pitch practice for investor run-ins.

Application Deadline: Feb. 8, 2018

Who Should Apply

Open to ALL startups and founders; university affiliation not required.

What to Expect

  • Go head to head with fellow founders in 30-second bursts in front of an audience of more than 400 investors, entrepreneurs and activators
  • Teams will be notified of their selection in February 2018
  • No additional materials allowed

Important Dates

  • Feb. 8, 2018: Application deadline
  • Feb. 12, 2018: Notified if you’re selected to compete
  • Feb. 13 – Mar. 5, 2018: Prepare with School of Rap co-founder
  • Mar. 6, 2018: Startup Battle @ Ignite

Prizes

  • Regional bragging rights and cool prizes
  • All applicants receive complimentary Amazon Web Services package
  • $150 gift cards for the winner of each round