Calling all Imperial College Business School students – your chance to win £5,000 & tailored support to accelerate your idea!

The Imperial Enterprise Lab is looking for the best pitch in the Business School to seed fund and kickstart your business with £5,000 top prize, £3,000 runners-up fund and bespoke advice and connections to supercharge your idea.

In addition to our prize fund this year winners will also receive a fast track pass to compete in the Venture Catalyst Challenge, Imperial’s biggest entrepreneurship competition.

This is a fantastic opportunity for Business School students who are serious about taking their business forward. The full package of support includes:

  1. A chance to pitch for a £5,000 top prize and a £3,000 runner’s up fund at a private event in front of key partners in the London entrepreneurial ecosystem including accelerators, incubators & grant providers
  2. Fast track access to the Venture Catalyst Challenge for the three winners
  3. Bespoke coaching from Imperial Enterprise Lab’s Experts-in-Residence (sector specialists and investors)
  4. Specialist training to sharpen up your pitch
  5. Tailored ongoing support post-competition including a place on Imperial Enterprise Lab’s exclusive Venture Mentoring Service


Who can enter?

The Imperial Business Pitch is open to all Business School students who have a new business idea they would like to pitch, or those who have already been developing a business idea for one of their courses.

We’re looking for teams this year who want access to exclusive support to take their business ideas to the next level. The competition will give access to a host of support that will enable teams to accelerate the growth of their projects beyond Imperial.

The full Terms and Conditions can be seen here.


How can you enter? 

Stage 1: Complete the simple online application form.

  1. Answer a few questions about your team and business 
  2. Add a URL link to a 2-minute elevator pitch video (e.g. YouTube/Vimeo) – The elevator pitch video should provide an overview of the key business concepts targeted to investors to raise their interest. It is essentially a ‘mini-pitch’ in 2 minutes or less. Please include a URL to your 2 minute elevator pitch. The video should be viewable externally. Some useful guidelines for what you should include in an elevator pitch are here or here.
  3. Upload a pitch deck of 12 slides in PowerPoint or pdf format – The pitch deck should be a summary of your business idea, is targeted to investors and should speak for itself. Essentially, a pitch deck provides a summary of the key business elements. Some useful guidelines for the pitch deck can be found here or here.
  4. Confirm all your team members have read and understood the Imperial Business Pitch Terms & Conditions.
  5. And of course, submit the application form before the deadline on Wednesday 20th June 2018 23.59 BST.


Once all applications are received, these will be judged by an independent panel and the finalists will be selected to progress to Stages 2 and 3. Teams will be notified on Thursday 28th June.


What is the process for finalist teams?

Selected teams will progress to Stages 2 and 3 of the competition:

Stage 2: Finalists will receive bespoke coaching from sector experts and investors and training to help sharpen up their pitching skills. At least one team member will need to attend each coaching/training session over 5 weeks (see Key Dates below for further information).

Stage 3: Finalists will pitch to investors at the pitch event on Tuesday 7th August 2018.


What happens at the final pitch event?

The final pitch event takes place on Tuesday 7th August 2018 where a panel of investors will judge the pitches and the winner of the £5,000 cash prize will be chosen! Each team will have 5 minutes to pitch and 5 minutes of Q&A.


Judging criteria

Finalist selection (from Stage 1 – based on the application form, the pitch deck and the elevator pitch video) will be judged on:   

  • Whether the problem & solution are clear and innovative
  • The strength of the team – including skills and drive
  • The market opportunity and customer segment
  • The business model & future plans for growth


Summary of key dates

Stage 1: Apply online

  • Application deadline: Wednesday 20th June 23.59 BST
  • Teams notified of application success: Thursday 28th June 2018

Stage 2: Coaching and specialist pitch training (July)

At least 1 team member needs to attend for an hour each week (exact dates tbc)

  • Application deadline: Wednesday 20th June 2018
  • Selection of participants: Wednesday 27th June 2018
  • Drinks event for cohort to meet & greet: Wednesday 4th July 2018
  • Coaching Session – Investor & SS: w/c 9th July 2018
  • Coaching Session – Investor & SS: w/c 16th July 2018
  • Coaching Session – Investor & SS: w/c 23rd July 2018
  • Performance & pitch – Investor + Lab Team + Ben: w/c 30th August 2018

Stage 3: 

  • Submit final pitch deck: 6th August 2018
  • Rehearsal (5min pitch): 7th August 2018
  • Final Event: 7th August 2018


Previous winners 

  • 2017 winners – Kahoots aims to take the stress out of buying a home with family, partners or friends
  • 2016 winners – HackScience offers users a platform to develop and control new tools to automate manual lab processes without the need to code.

Contact details

For any questions, please contact Olivia Standish at Imperial Enterprise Lab.