10 Best Startup Pitch Competitions in 2024

Entrepreneur speaking on stage.

Startup pitch competitions are as valuable as they are terrifying. For entrepreneurs who choose to take the plunge, the opportunity that is possible is an undeniable game-changer. If you aren’t already familiar with what a startup pitch competition is, it is a competitive event where entrepreneurs pitch their startup idea, typically to a group of investors. The lucky winner gains investment capital, networking opportunities, and often valuable business resources as well.

If you think you have what it takes to give a pitch competition your best shot, the next step is to figure out the right startup pitch competition for you. And, you’re in luck! We have researched the best startup pitch competitions for you in this guide.

Best Startup Competitions for Entrepreneurs

Whether you’re an established tech startup or a college student with a great startup idea, there is most likely a startup pitch competition for you. We researched the top startup pitch competitions with submissions that are later in the year as well as who they are best suited for.

1. TechCrunch Disrupt 2024

TechCrunch Disrupt is a startup conference and pitch competition built for founders and investors, such as venture capitalists, to connect and reach new heights. The event is more than just a chance to showcase a startup pitch deck, however. During the event, startups are able to network among founders and investors, gain valuable insight into tools and tech, and learn from disruptive founders.

To participate in the pitch competition, startups must go through Startup Battlefield 200. This precursor event connects startups with potential investors, provides mentorship opportunities, and grants the company a chance to exhibit during TechCrunch Disrupt in order to win a $100,000 equity-free cash prize.

  • Prize: $100,000
  • Location: San Francisco, California
  • Date: October 28-30, 2024
  • Applications: Applications open soon here
  • Best For: Early-stage startups, tech startups

2. Startup World Cup

Startup World Cup is the largest startup competition across the globe, hosted by Pegasus Tech Ventures. To compete, startups must participate in one of over 50 regional competitions. The winner of each region will move on to compete at the grand finale.

Outside of the pitch competition, startups gain valuable networking opportunities by attending the event to develop partnerships and relationships as well as insights from industry leaders.

  • Prize: $1 Million
  • Location: San Francisco, California
  • Date: October 4, 2024
  • Applications: Apply in your region here
  • Best For: Startups of all stages and industries

3. Collision 2024

Collision is an annual conference focused on tech in North America. The event incorporates startup workshops, investor networking, and a startup competition, PITCH.

You can participate in the pitch event by joining Collision's startup program, ALPHA, granting access to the PITCH application, investors to startup meetings, mentor hours, and the event's startup showcase. Otherwise, you can opt to attend the conference to take advantage of the networking and educational events as well as seek investment opportunities.

  • Prize: No cash prizes
  • Location: Toronto, Canada
  • Date: June 17-20, 2024
  • Applications: Apply for ALPHA here
  • Best For: Startups of all stages and industries

4. Web Summit PITCH 2024

Web Summit's PITCH is a competition for early-stage startups to present in front of investors and global partners. By the same organization that hosts Collision, Web Summit is a global startup event built to bring startups and industry leaders together to increase visibility for inventive, disruptive companies.

To participate in the pitch competition, startups are required to join Web Summit's program, ALPHA, and have less than €5 million in funding. Startups must also have no discernible change to their business model within the last three years. The program includes access to investor meetings, mentorship opportunities, and startup masterclasses.

  • Prize: No cash prizes
  • Location: Lisbon, Portugal
  • Date: November 11-14, 2024
  • Applications: Apply for ALPHA here
  • Best For: Early-stage startups

5. Slush 2024

Slush is a giant founder-focused startup event composed of over 20,000 meetings, workshops, notable speakers, and founder events. The event's startup competition, Slush 100, is a competition between 100 startups that were launched in 2020 or later. The prize is €1 million from some of the most noteworthy early-stage VC funds in Europe: Accel, NEA, Northzone, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and General Catalyst.

In addition to this, founders can apply to present at the Startup Studio, a showcase of 80 companies in fast-growing sectors such as AI and deep tech.

  • Prize: €1 million
  • Location: Helsinki, Finland
  • Date: November 20-21, 2024
  • Applications: Fill out a startup profile on the website
  • Best For: Established European and North American startups

6. South Summit Startup Competition

South Summit Startup Competition serves as an opportunity for startup founders to share ideas and gain exposure for their startups. To participate in the competition, startups must apply for an open call. Judges then review business ideas and select up to 100 finalists to participate.

Eligible startups gain mentoring and training as well as the opportunity to pitch in front of investors and corporations to receive funding and awards.

  • Prize: Access to funding and partnerships
  • Location: Brazil and Madrid
  • Date: Varies by location
  • Applications: Apply by registering here
  • Best For: Startups based in Europe

7. Inventures Startup Pitch Event

Inventures Startup Pitch Event is an industry-specific startup pitch competition based in Canada. To qualify, startups must have a product or service in one of the specified areas, including food tech, AI, and healthtech, and cannot have more than $10 million in funding already.

Startups will pitch in front of venture capitalists, angel investors, early adopters, and more. Prizes include more than cash prizes – finalists also receive free registration to Inventures programming and mentorship opportunities.

  • Prize: $10,000
  • Location: Calgary, Canada
  • Date: May 29-31, 2024
  • Applications: Apply online before March 15
  • Best For: Food tech startups, generative AI startups, healthtech startups, cleantech startups

8. Demo Day 2024

While Y Combinator's Demo Day isn't necessarily a startup pitch competition, it is a presentation for an invitation-only audience composed of over 1,500 investors and media companies. The event is held twice a year, in April and September, online over two days.

The process starts by applying for seed funding from Y Combinator. Therefore, accepted startups do not gain cash prizes from participating in the event alone.

  • Prize: Seed funding from Y Combinator
  • Location: Virtual
  • Date: April and September
  • Applications: Apply online before April 22
  • Best For: Seed-stage startups

9. SXSW Pitch

A part of the famous South by Southwest (SXSW) festival and conference, SXSW Pitch is a three day long event. With startups pitching by industry throughout the event. For 2024, qualifying startups must be a part of a designated industry, a few of which are artificial intelligence, voice and robotics, enterprise and smart data, and smart cities. Startup founders will be pitching in front of industry experts, media professionals, angel investors, and venture capitalists.

  • Prize: Undisclosed cash prize
  • Location: Austin, Texas
  • Date: March 9-10, 2024
  • Applications: Apply here
  • Best For: Industry-specific, early-stage startups

10. Hello Tomorrow Global Challenge

Hello Tomorrow's Global Challenge is a global startup competition dedicated to deep tech startups innovating across a variety of industries and technologies, such as biotech, energy, and agriculture. The competition is a part of the organization's Global Summit event that brings investors, startups, and industry experts together.

Qualifying startups must be in the early stages, up to Series A funding, with a team of at least two members. Applications are closed for 2024; however, applications typically open for the following year's event in June.

  • Prize: Up to €100,000
  • Location: Paris, France
  • Date: March 21-22, 2024
  • Applications: Apply on the website
  • Best For: Deep tech startups, early-stage startups