IMD Startup Competition 2018/2019

Benefit from the free experience of our MBA & EMBA participants

Could your startup benefit from highly talented, experienced and motivated individuals who have been carefully screened to participate in two of the most selective and rigorous business programs in the world?

If so, this competition provides a unique opportunity for you to get the help and insights of participants in IMD’s MBA and Executive MBA programs.

Many ventures got lasting value from working with our MBAs and EMBAs. In the most recent Swiss Top 100 report, IMD-supported startups captured 28 of the top 100 places, including the first 4 out of the top 10. Do you want to be in that group next year ?

Seize your chance now! This offer is open to all Swiss-based startups and runs in collaboration with the Swiss government's Innosuisse-Swiss Innovation Agency, VentureKick, MassChallenge Switzerland and investiere.

See the winners of the 2017-2018 competition here: Start-up Competition Winners

Startup graphic

Executive MBA project opportunity

  • Up to ten startups will be chosen to work with two Executive MBA classes
  • Split into small teams each working with a dedicated startup, our EMBAs help analyze and challenge your business plans and company strategies
  • Their ultimate goal is to make a pitch on your behalf (with one of your representatives) to venture capitalists and angels in Silicon Valley in September 

MBA project opportunity

  • Up to 15 startups will receive the support of our MBA class
  • Split into small teams each working with a dedicated startup, our MBAs put in an average of 6-8 hours on this project each week, for a total support of at least 500-600 work-hours

What type of startups are we looking for?

We are looking for early-stage companies that have a solid chance of market success, have a team that is curious and willing to open themselves up to a small group of management "students", are pleased to enter into both strategic and business model discussions, and can provide a good learning opportunity for our participants with timing that aligns with the IMD programs.

Contact us for more information

Startup competition: key milestones and deadlines

  • November 12, 2018: Submission deadline
  • December 7, 2018: Formal notification to all selected startups
  • December 12, 2018: Deadline for the selected startups to accept or decline the IMD offer

Executive MBA startup project timing

  • June 11, 2019 or January 14, 2020: EMBA-selected companies meet with EMBA class at IMD in Lausanne and start collaboration
  • September 8-13, 2019, February 2-7, 2020 or February 9-14, 2020: Cohort 1 of EMBA teams travel to Silicon Valley with one representative from each startup

MBA startup project timing

  • January 31, 2019: MBA-selected companies meet with their MBA teams at IMD in Lausanne that evening
  • February 2, 2019: In-company introductory visits for MBA participants (wherever possible or desirable)
  • January 31 - April 12, 2019: MBA-selected companies collaborate with their MBA teams

As additional support for Swiss startups, and to help the Swiss entrepreneurial ecosystem, winners of the IMD Startup Competition will now receive a CHF 5,000 Startup Scholarship to be used to participate in any of IMD’s online or open programs. See more

Apply here