General conditions for participation

»venture» is organized by the »venture foundation» with the support of ETH Zürich, McKinsey & Company, Knecht Holding, Innosuisse (formerly CTI), and EPFL, and is supported by an Advisory Board, comprising representatives of the Swiss business community.
The conditions set forth are valid for the current edition only. 

1.  The competition

1.1  The competition consists of the business idea competition and the business plan competition, which run in parallel. Both competitions start on January 31, 2018, and end with the award ceremony on June 25, 2018. In addition, the top five business ideas selected by the >>venture>> jury will automatically enter the SRF-RTS audience award.

1.2  For each edition of »venture», a project can enter the business idea competition or the business plan competition, but not both.

2.  Entitlement to participate

2.1  Participation is open to individuals who are resident in Switzerland or the Principality of Liechtenstein and are at least 18 years of age, and teams as long as at least one member of the team is resident in Switzerland or the Principality of Liechtenstein and is at least 18 years of age.
Participation is also open to individuals and teams that enter their business idea via Swissnex (Boston/New York, San Francisco, Rio de Janeiro/Sao Paulo, Shanghai, and Bangalore), provided that such teams include at least one Swiss national resident abroad.

2.2  Participation is not open to individuals or teams if, on the basis of their business idea or their business plan, a company has been registered in the commercial register of Switzerland or the Principality of Liechtenstein before October 1, 2016.

2.3  Participation is not open to teams if, on the basis of their business idea or business plan, a company has been founded, or is intended to be found, outside Switzerland or the Principality of Liechtenstein.

2.4 The »venture» Office reserves the right to refuse participation to anyone for any reason deemed applicable by the »venture» Office.

3.  Conditions and forms of participation

3.1  The condition for participation in the competition is the submission of the business idea or business plan by 23:59 on April 12, 2018. The business idea or the business plan is considered as submitted if it is uploaded to the »venture» Online Platform in PDF format in English before the deadline specified above. No other form of submission will be accepted.

3.2  »venture», at its own discretion, may extend the deadline for submissions in exceptional cases.

3.3  Documentation, patterns and models submitted for the competition shall become the property of »venture». There is no entitlement to the return of such items at the conclusion of the competition. [Any intellectual property rights (including copyrights) in the business ideas and the business plans shall remain with the participants, but »venture» shall be entitled to use such intellectual property rights for the purpose of the competition].

3.4  By submitting a business idea or a business plan to »venture», the participant agrees to be bound by these General Terms and Conditions.

3.5 »venture» may unilaterally amend these General Terms and Conditions. Participants will be noticed by e-mail.

4.  Coaching

4.1  Participants in both tracks of the competition may ask »venture» for support from a coach. While »venture» will make every effort to provide a coach, participants have no entitlement to coaching support.

4.2  Conditions for the provision of a coach are the registration of the team via the »venture» Online Platform and the online submission of a coaching request.

4.3  The extent and duration of coaching shall be determined by the participant(s) and the coach. Coaching is free of charge for the duration of the competition until the award ceremony. Any subsequent coaching relationship shall be subject to an agreement between coach and team.

5.  The jury decision

5.1  The jury shall deliberate in private.

5.2  Entries that do not meet the formal requirements of the competition may be excluded from consideration by the jury.

The formal requirements for consideration by the jury in the business idea competition are the registration of the team via the »venture» Online Platform, the submission of an online summary of the business idea, and the business idea itself in the form of a 2–6 A4-page PDF.

The formal requirements for consideration by the jury in the business plan competition are the submission of the online summary together with the complete business plan in PDF format.

5.3  Business ideas and business plans based on ideas that have already been implemented in identical or similar fashion, or that do not differ from an already implemented idea in any significant, business-related aspect, may be excluded from consideration by the jury.

5.4  Business ideas and business plans that are based on ideas already entered in a previous »venture» competition may be excluded from consideration by the jury. Business plans based on business ideas that were already entered into the business idea track of a previous >>venture>> competition can be entered into the business plan track.

5.5  After the award ceremony, each participant shall receive online access to the comments made by the jurors. Jurors shall remain anonymous unless they explicitly agree to the publication of their name.

5.6  The jury's decision is final. No correspondence shall be entered into and there shall be no recourse to legal action against the decision by the jury.

5.7  The audience award is given to the submission which, out of the top five business ideas, receives the most votes from the public via the dedicated website on Voting requirements and voting period are announced on


6.  Prizes

6.1  The best proposals in the business idea competition will be awarded a startup consulting package powered by McKinsey & Company, and a total prize money of CHF 40'000, of which CHF 15'000 will be awarded to the best business idea, then CHF 10'000, 7'500, 5'000, and 2'500.

6.2  The winners of the business plan competition will be awarded a total prize money of CHF 120'000, of which CHF 60'000 will be awarded to the best business plan, then CHF 30'000, 15'000, 10'000, and 5'000.

6.3  The winner of the SRF-RTS audience award will be awarded CHF 10’000.

6.4  The prizes will be paid by bank transfer to the winners chosen by the jury.

6.5  Participants in the competition are not entitled to compensation for expenses of any kind.

7. Communication

7.1 The »venture» competition will be closely followed by the media. Photos, videos, and contributions to events and the prize giving will be published in the media and on the »venture» website, and participants agree that such publication of photos and videos is being made by the »venture» competition.

7.2 Accordingly, the winners of the business idea and the business plan competitions promise to mention their successful participation in »venture» in their own communications in the future.

8.  Data protection and liability disclaimer

8.1  Participants grant >>venture>> the right to process their data submitted. 

8.2  Business idea and business plan submissions shall be treated by >>venture>> as confidential. With the exception of information intended for publication (project name, summary, industry), no participant or project data shall be published or divulged without the agreement of the participants.

8.3  Team members of the top five business idea projects selected by the >>venture>> jury grant >>venture>>, SRF and RTS the right to record a video about the team's business idea and to publish it.

8.4  Participants grant >>venture>> the right to share their contact details (name, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses) with the organizing institutions (ETH Zurich, McKinsey & Company, Knecht Holding, Innosuisse, and EPFL) in addition to the information intended for publication (project name, summary, industry) on request by the organizing institutions.

8.5  Participants can opt to give access to their full personal and project profiles, including the business idea or business plan submissions, to selected research departments of the organizing institutions ETH Zurich (Department of Management, Technology and Economics) and EPFL (College of Management of Technology) for research purposes upon registration. If participants have checked the opt-in box on their registration profile at the time of the submission deadline, the >>venture>> office reserves the right to share their entire profile data with the above research departments on request by the departments and without any further notice to the participants. The research departments commit themselves to keeping all data received confidential. Any resulting scientific publications shall only contain aggregated and anonymised data. While >>venture>> encourages participants to make their data accessible to ETH Zurich and EPFL for research purposes, participants’ decisions on sharing their data have no effect on their participation in the competition

8.6  All members of the >>venture>> office, coaches, jurors, experts at events, and other persons involved in the competition who have access to confidential participant or project data, shall commit themselves toward the participants to the maintenance of secrecy by means of a confidentiality declaration.

8.7  »venture», its organizers and the members of the Advisory Board disclaim any liability for any form of loss or damage, in particular, caused by employees or assistants, in accordance with the provisions of Articles 100 and 101 of the Swiss Code of Obligations.

9. Use of the >>venture>> online platform

9.1 Users of the >>venture>> online platform (in the following: user(s)) agree that their personal data will be stored in electronic form. Their data will not be sent to third parties.

9.2 Users are responsible for the content of their online profile and for the information they provide and declare the particulars they supply are true and correct. 

9.3 Users are obligated to keep the password of their online profile confidential. Users are not allowed to transfer or make their online profile available for use to third parties. 

9.4 Each user may only generate one online profile.

9.5 Users are obligated not to misuse the >>venture>> online platform, in particular not to

  • Distribute defamatory, offensive or in any other way unlawful material or any similar material. In particular, this refers to pornographic, racist, inciting or comparable contents.
  • Bring onto the >>venture>> online platform computer viruses (infected software) or software or other material that could in any way damage hardware or software of >>venture>>, other users of the platform or third parties.
  • Publish data that is copyright protected, unless the user is in possession of the usage rights.

9.6 >>venture>> reserves the right to expunge contents of the >>venture>> online platform without offering reasons, to change the entire platform or parts thereof, or to cease its operation.

9.7  >>venture>> is not liable for the possible misuse of user data by third parties.