NOVA Startup Competition



When: July 31st, 2024 | 3 – 5 PM | Hybrid Event

The NOVA START-UP COMPETITION is an initiative of the NOVA Impact Office that aims to award participants with the opportunity to participate in an International competition, along the best European Start-ups, pitch the project to Investors, raise money, network and talk to industrial business leaders across Europe.

If you have an early stage start-up and want to raise money for your project, this is the spot!

Applications open until July 21th, 2024


To promote the efforts of Innovative projects and to win a spot in the STAGE two international competition.

The winners of the NOVA Startup Competition will have the chance to participate in the STAGE two competition, on October 30-31st, 2024, pitch the project to an international Venture Capital Jury to raise funding to develop the project further and to connect with an international ecosystem of entrepreneurs and industry stakeholders.


This initiative is open to teams, with at least one element from NOVA University Schools (student, Alumni, Professor, Researcher, etc.).

The team should be preferably composed of students (Bachelor/Master/Ph.D.) or management but can also include Alumni, Researchers or Professors has long as the technology or scientific breakthrough behind the project has been developed (at least in part) at NOVA University.

There should be an already available minimum viable product (MVP) and a business plan. In some specific projects, the business plan can be the MVP.

All areas of knowledge are eligible to participate and:

  • The startup has not raised more than € 500,000 in equity capital and € 1,500.000 in grants prior to the first pre-event
  • The team is seeking funding or capital (or will be in the next 12 months)
  • The startup is a potentially viable investment opportunity

You can find the regulation of the competition here.

Application & Selection Process

To apply to the NOVA Startup competition, teams must apply here, until the July 21th, 2024, send their Business Plan/Pitch Deck to NOVA Impact office ( with reference: NovaStartupCompetition2024.

Make sure you read the regulation of the competition here.

The Jury will evaluate the Business Plans and select a maximum of 10 ideas to pitch in the NOVA Startup Competition. The pitch will be held in hybrid format, so we will have both physically and online pitches.

The Business plans/pitch deck should have a maximum of 15 pages with the following content:

  • Executive Summary;
  • The problem;
  • Solution;
  • Value proposition;
  • Target market;
  • Competitors;
  • Intellectual property Analysis;
  • Financial projections;
  • The team.

The evaluation criteria are the following:

  • Size of the potential market defined in the Business Plan as well as its impact in the society (should be aligned with the SDGs);
  • Quality of the team, measured by qualifications, diversity and complementarity of its members;;
  • Quality of the idea, measured by the explanation of the problem/need identified and the product/service/technology capabilities to solve the problem/need;
  • Innovation of the idea;
  • Capacity of quantification of the key business elements;
  • Quality of the business strategy;
  • Suitability of the funding structure presented.

The best team will have access to STAGE Two program with travel and accommodation expenses covered. The presence in STAGE two will give international visibility but also the chance to raise money from VC investors.


Deadline for Registration and Business plan/Pitch deck submission: July 21th, 2024;

Communication of selected Ideas: July 24nd, 2024;

Final Pitch – Hybrid at the Rectorate NOVA University Lisbon: July 31st, 2024 | 3 p.m.


For more information send us an e-mail to with reference NovaStartupCompetition2024.