Choose the right competition track

>>venture>> offers two competition tracks: the business idea and the business plan track. Depending on the stage of your project, you need to choose which track you want to enter, as you cannot enter the same project to both tracks in the same year. However, if you enter the business idea track this year, we encourage you to enter your project to the business plan track the year after. The general conditions for entering are the same for both tracks; please note that your company must not have been registered in the registry of commerce before the date as specified under general conditions for participation. 

The business idea track

A promising business idea has the following characteristics: It fulfills a customer need, is innovative, unique, has a clear focus, and is profitable in the long term. Does this sound like your idea?

Enter this track if you have a business idea and need a professional reality check. You need to submit a description of your idea on two to six pages before the competition deadline. Your proposal should not read like an advertising brochure for an ingenious product or like a technical description. Rather, you should address a potential investor and cover the following three aspects:

  1. What is the customer benefit? The key to success is not a brilliant product but a satisfied customer. Customers buy to satisfy a need or to solve a problem, e.g. food and drink, a gadget that makes their lives easier, etc.
  2. What is the market? Your idea will only be commercially successful if the market accepts it. Explain the market size and target groups. What makes you stand out from competitors?
  3. Can you implement the idea? How are you planning to make money? Is your team fit for the challenge?

The 5 winners of the business idea track receive a startup consulting package powered by McKinsey & Company and prizes according to their ranks. The prize structure is the following: first place CHF 15,000, second place CHF 10,000, third place CHF 7,500, fourth place CHF 5,000, and fifth place CHF 2,500. If your team is among the 5 winners of the business idea track, you will have to make yourselves available to our media partners for the production of a short video portrait (90 seconds) to be published on our and our partners' media channels. This will allow all the five teams to gain attention from the media and to one of them - the one with the most votes from the TV audience - to win the audience award and receive an additional CHF 10,000. 

The business plan track

You can only make your business idea a commercial success if you translate it into an actionable business plan. The business plan track is here to help you:

  1. Systematically challenge your business idea to discover flaws early and fix them efficiently.
  2. Put together an actionable implementation plan.
  3. Prepare a document that will serve as a central means of communication with investors and strategic partners.

To enter this track, you need to submit a systematically structured business plan of 20 to 30 pages before the competition deadline. We highly recommend to include a thorough review of your intellectual property based on an assisted patent search and landscape analysis at the Institute for Intellectual Property, which is available for free to all participants in the business plan track.

The 25 finalists of the business plan competition get the opportunity to present their proposals at the >>venture >> Investor Day. The five winners of the business plan competition will receive cash prizes for a total of CHF 120,000. The prize money is given a fonds perdu, i.e., not as an investment in exchange for shares of your company.
The prize structure is the following: first place CHF 60,000, second place CHF 30,000, third place CHF 15,000, fourth place CHF 10,000, and fifth place CHF 5,000.