If you’re a pre-investor startup looking for some much-needed funds, listen up.

Every year we award $5000 in prize money at the Venture Cup pitching competition to the startup we rate as best in class.

To enter, simply register and send in a quick video pitch detailing the market potential of your venture. 

We’re looking for ambitious founders with innovative startups that will act as a force for good, transform industries and challenge the status quo.

Finalists also get access to three weeks of intensive coaching session, Venture Week workshops and pitch practice. 

Venture Cup is run by the Innovation Studio and open to start-up teams with a least one Swinburne staff, student or alumni founder.

Venture Cup 2022 Pitch Night

After three weeks of masterclasses and coaching, 10 finalists pitched their startups to a judging panel on 10 November 2022 for the chance to win A$5,000 in venture funding.

Venture Cup 2022 Pitch Night
View video transcript [PDF 187KB]
  • Alexandra Sinickas , Founder of milkdrop and 2019 Venture Cup winner

    “We’re just so grateful for not only the prize, but also the opportunity to share what we’ve done and what we want to do with a bigger audience.”

    Alexandra Sinickas , Founder of milkdrop and 2019 Venture Cup winner

Frequently asked questions

Browse answers to our most frequently asked questions. If you can't find the answer you're looking for here, please feel free to reach out to us at innovationstudio@swinburne.edu.au.

The Venture Cup is perfect for you if you: 

  • are an individual or team with an idea or product

  • are open to refining your pitch and able to attend all pitch coaching sessions

  • are looking for experienced mentors and facilitators to help refine your pitch

  • have a new idea that hasn’t been through a previous Swinburne Accelerator

  • haven't raised more than $500,000 in funding

  • are part of a team with a founder who is a Swinburne student, staff member, or alumni (to be eligible for the program).

Before applying, we highly recommend that you watch the recording of our Info Night and download the slides to learn how to craft a successful application. 

If selected as a finalist, you will attend three weeks of pitch coaching from 3 to 21 October to get you pitch ready. 

Date Event
8 September Info Night
8 September Applications open 
27 September Applications close
3–7 October Venture Week
3–21 October   Pitch coaching 
10 November Venture Cup Pitch Night
  • Finalists must attend a weekly pitch coaching session each week over three weeks.
  • Sessions run from 3 to 21 October. We have sessions to choose from each week. You may be required to attend more than one session per week.
  • You must attend our Pitch Night on Thursday 10 November.
  • You must be available for interviews and promotional photographs before, during and after the event.

We will select up to five applicants to proceed as finalists in the Students category, and another five for the Alumni & Staff category. 

Depending on the quantity of applications we may be conducting phone interviews with a few applicants.

In your three-minute video application plus a maximum of eight slides, you must tell us about:

  • problem
  • solution
  • market size
  • competition
  • business model
  • impact model (optional)
  • team
  • traction (progress to date)
  • your ask.

As long as we can hear your pitch, all you need to do is address the inclusions outlined. No heavy editing is required, however time your voice to pace with your slides. Ensure we can connect to your video link and it is not locked in a private server.

Please note we turn off videos at three minutes so keep it under!

Yes, your video application will need to include both your voice-over pitch and a maximum eight-slide deck.

No, there is no cost involved.

No, the pitch competition must be pitched by a single founder.

Yes, we would love for you to apply for Venture Cup.

Unfortunately we can’t consider applications that have missed the deadline.

Unfortunately due to the volume of applications we receive we can’t guarantee that your startup will receive feedback from our selection panel.

If you have any questions please send us an email at innovationprecinct@swinburne.edu.au

The pitches for the Venture Cup event must be no longer than three minutes. You will also need to create a supporting slide deck of eight slides, we help you with that during pitch coaching.

Venture Cup is a pitch competition open to early-stage ventures that are pre-investor funded. You can apply for the program as long as you have not raised more than $500,000 in funding.

No. Our program does not take equity or ownership in your company or venture.

We don’t mind your venture being overseas. However, you do need to be located in Melbourne for pitch coaching and the pitch event.

  • Where you have identified an unmet market need; and
  • The business has opportunity to scale-up (globally) and is not limited to a local or single person service only; and
  • There is an element of innovation or disruption, making the journey of identifying new markets, business models and solutions a greater challenge!

No, all you need is an idea that you can pitch. However, having some market testing, validation or traction will help your pitch.

Yes, we include social enterprises and NFP ventures. We would like to understand how your business will be commercially viable.

Swinburne would like to maintain a long-term relationship with you as your business grows.

We are always looking for role models and mentors to support emerging startups, we would also like your periodic support at speaking events, for photos and startup showcases over time.

Plus, should you become the next Australian unicorn, please remember Swinburne fondly!

Explore more of our programs

Want to know more?

If you have any questions, need more information or you're wondering how Swinburne Innovation Studio can help turn your big idea into a real thing, contact us via email at innovationstudio@swinburne.edu.au.

Contact us now