Deakin Startup Competition

Designed for Deakin students, staff, and alumni of all experience levels the Deakin Startup Competiton helps you launch your startup or social enterprise with a total prize pool of $25 000 including cash, in-kind credits from Google and Amazon and other perks. Winners will be announced at a Showcase event in September 2021 and workshops are available to refine your submission and guide you through the process.

Have you got a startup idea that won’t leave you alone? Or have you always been a little too shy to try when it comes to the world of business and entrepreneurship?

The competition aims to welcome, inspire and encourage students, staff, and alumni to ignite their entrepreneurial spirit in a manner that is part competition, part learning experience. Whether you have little or no experience, you’ll be able to develop, test and pitch a startup idea. If you have a more developed idea, or consider yourself a seasoned entrepreneur – you can also participate.  

The Deakin Startup Competition may be perfect for you!

This inaugural competition is focused on participation and having the courage to try – there is a program of workshops with experienced facilitators and guest presenters to support you in the registration period, so no prior experience is required. 

Submit your Expression of Interest here (Registration opens July 12)

How will the competition work?

The competition begins with the in-person workshop series, Entrepreneurship Fundamentals, to help guide the development of an idea for submission before the registration deadline on August 23, 2021.  Registration is considered your competition entry.

If your entry is accepted you will have access to further intensive workshops and mentoring to help you refine your submission before the final deadline in September.   

The competition will culminate in a grand final showcase where the top eight entries will pitch to a live audience in a bid to win the prizes.

Eligibility Criteria

This competition is open to all Deakin students, staff and alumni. 

  • Team size must be between 1 and 5 members and must include at least 1 staff member, student or alumni of Deakin University.
  • Teams must not submit an idea that is operating as a going concern by the members (this includes operating under a business incubator or accelerator), at the time of registration.
  • Teams must be available in person for the competition workshops and the showcase.  See key dates for details.  Submissions from cloud virtual and online teams will not be accepted in 2021.
  • Details of competition guidelines, T&Cs and how to enter will be made available when the registration period opens 

Submit your Expression of Interest here (Registration opens July 12)  

Important Dates

Registration for the competition opens on July 12, 2021, and closes at midnight on August 22, 2021. Successful applicants will be notified on August 25, 2021.

Kindly note that dates for the ‘Entrepreneurship Fundamentals” workshop series to support competition registrations will be  announced in early June but will run in the registration period, in person, at Deakin’s Burwood Campus

Final Submissions from successful applicants will be accepted until 5pm September 19, 2021.  The eight teams that make the grand final will be notified on September 22, 2021.

Kindly note that dates for the ‘Startup Success” workshop series for registered teams will be announced in early June but will run through the month of September, in person, at locations in the Melbourne CBD.

Winners will be announced at the grand final showcase on September 27, 2021.

Submit your Expression of Interest here (Registration opens July 12)   

Prize Pool and Competition Streams

Our winners will be announced at the grand final showcase on September 27 and they will share in a prize pool that is currently valued at over $25 000 (and still growing).  It combines equity-free seed funding, in-kind prizes from our partners, and educational opportunities to further your startup idea. 

The competition will have two streams.

  • Stream One is for individuals or teams of Deakin Students.
  • Stream Two is for individuals or teams of Deakin Staff and Alumni.

Watch this space for further developments!

Submit your Expression of Interest here (Registration opens July 12)

"The amazing thing about the way that the course is structured is that we'll learn a little bit, but then we'll also get to writing, action, and implement what we learned to our business straight away. I didn't expect to have so much done!"

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