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Competition overview

The challenge

Got a great business idea?

The Young Entrepreneurs Challenge brought to you by Unloc and Verizon is an online entrepreneurship competition looking for people aged 16 to 25, with fresh and innovative technology-led business ideas. We are reaching out to a Pan-European audience in our search for a great new start-up business. You could win a £10,000 / €11,000* grant, a mentorship package and pro-bono support to accelerate your business idea.

To enter the Challenge, all you need to do is submit a 60-second pitch video on the competition website. Five finalists are selected for the Grand Final based on the key competition criteria; viability, technology innovation and sustainability. One overall winner, selected by a panel of esteemed industry experts, will walk away with a £10,000 / €11,000* grant, whilst each finalist will also receive a £1,000/€1,100 cash injection.

Apply now

The prize!

Applicants will compete to win the overall prize at the grand final:

  • £10,000/€11,000* of funding for their start-up business
  • A mentorship package to accelerate their idea
  • Finalist runners up will receive £1,000 of funding for their start-up business

Applications will be judged on three key factors:

  1. Viability
  2. Sustainability
  3. Technology innovation

Apply now

*The actual prize fund will be dependent on the exchange rate at time of award

The timeline

1st October – Online competition launch

22nd January – Online competition deadline

1st February – Finalists announced

February – Grand Final

Competition criteria



  • Can the plan achieve what it states it will do?
  • Does it operate within the budget/resources currently held or will Acquire?
  • Is the idea investment-ready? How will you use the funding if successful?


<h2 class=Technology

  • Is the idea unique?
  • Does it have a clear unique selling point?
  • Is the technology solving the problem in a creative way or fulfilling a gap in the market?



Will the venture:

  • Improve people’s lives in some way?
  • Meet social or community needs in a new way?
  • Does it meet or sustain a UN SDG in some way?

How to<br>apply”></p>

<h2 class=How to

  • Record a short video of yourself. The video needs to be a minimum of 60 seconds and a maximum of 90 seconds – remember to explain how your idea meets the three Criteria!
  • Hit the apply button. Fill out the application form and submit your video. Then sit tight and wait to hear from the judges: finalists are announced on the 22nd January.

Rules & eligibility

Applications will only be accepted from:

Business proposals must meet the following criteria:

  • Individuals between the ages of 16 and 25 years on the 1st February 2021
  • Residents and/or citizens of a mainland European country
  • Immediate family members of the judging panel are not eligible to apply
  • Previous entrants who attended the Grand Final are not eligible to apply
  • Be legal in all mainland European countries
  • Be either a pre-start (not yet trading); or not have been trading for more than 3 years and have an annual turnover of less than £100,000 on 1st February 2021
  • Not have the purpose of political lobbying
  • Be the applicant’s own idea and not infringe on the copyright, patent or intellectual property of others

Apply now

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