HBS New Venture Competition - Alumni Track 2018-2019

Welcome to the 2019 HBS New Venture Competition - Alumni Track! The New Venture Competition (NVC) serves as a launch pad for innovative new ventures from HBS alumni, providing access and exposure to potential investors, mentors, and advisors. The annual event is sponsored by the Harvard Business School's Rock Center for Entrepreneurship and Alumni Clubs & Associations. The competition is open to alumni with early-stage ventures, and winners receive an invitation to the student and alumni NVC Finale to be held on April 23, 2019.


Apply by January 22, 2019, 12:00pm ET. You can save and modify your application at any point prior to the January 22 deadline, as long as you do not hit the "Submit" button. Once you hit the "Submit" button, you will not be able to modify your application.


The first round begins at the regional level. You will apply to an NVC alumni host club in one of 10 global regions of your choice by completing the application herein and hitting the “Submit” button.

If your team is chosen to pitch at the regional competition, you will be asked to submit a pitch deck (template below in Downloads section for guidance) to your NVC host club. Regional Competition dates vary. After applications close on January 22, 2019, your NVC host club will reach out with next steps and a date for your regional competition.  If you win the regional competition, a pitch deck will be required of you by March 11, 2019 to move onto the Global Semi-Finals round.


All regional winners will automatically move forward to the global semi-finals round.  You will be judged virtually by a group of investors and founders from around the globe. Eight teams will be selected to compete in the NVC Finale in April. The eight finalist teams will be notified on March 20, 2019.

GLOBAL FINALS ROUND - April 23, 2019 (HBS Campus)

The Finals round will take place on the HBS campus on Tuesday, April 23, 2019.  The 8 final teams will pitch live to a panel of HBS alumni investors and founders, of which 4 teams will be selected to present a 90-second pitch at the Finale show that evening.

The 8 global finalists will have 7-10 minutes to pitch and 15-20 minutes of Q&A (exact times to be determined) in front of prominent HBS alumni venture capitalists. These judges will select 4 teams to present a 90-second pitch at the NVC Finale show.  They will also choose the Grand Prize and Runner-up winners, however, these winners will find out who they are at the Finale show.  All 4 teams are eligible to win the Crowd Favorite prize.

  • Grand Prize Winner: $75,000
  • Runner-up Winner: $25,000
  • Crowd Favorite Winner: $5,000 (chosen via a live poll at the finale)


  • The venture must have an HBS alumni as a founder. You may be asked to provide documents verifying your role and equity stake in the venture
  • Ventures must have less than $2 million USD in revenue. In addition, they may not have raised more than $2.5 million USD in total debt/invested equity capital. This amount includes money received through grants, awards, and other funding sources.  Teams must meet both criteria.  Invested capital is defined as funding appearing on the balance sheet at the time of the submission, which is no later than January 22, 2019. Teams will disclose any prior funding received at the time of registration.
  • HBS Investors are not eligible to submit companies unless they are identified as a founder and involved full-time in the day-to-day operations. The HBS Founder must be represented at all events and be the pitch lead.
  • Investment funds, acquisitions, and consulting services are not deemed "new ventures" and are not eligible
  • Cash and in-kind prizes are awarded solely to participating companies and not to any grant-funding institutions
  • Previous Regional Winners cannot re-apply to the alumni New Venture Competition
  • When using this platform, you are agreeing to Reviewr’s Terms & Conditions
  • The HBS Rock Center for Entrepreneurship & Alumni Relations Office reserves the right to disqualify any entry that violates the rules or spirit of the competition. The decision of the Rock Center and Alumni Relations is final and binding.

Travel for Regional Competitions

  • If selected to compete in the regional competition, the applicant will cover their own travel to the regional competition
  • In the event that too few applications are submitted to a region, HBS has the right to cancel the regional competition
Travel for Global Finals and Finale
  • The NVC regional lead club will reimburse travel to the regional winner who is selected to advance to the Global Finals round in April
  • Please work with the NVC regional lead club directly to obtain your reimbursement
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