How to participate in Pivot East 2019

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 Eligibility, Criteria and Intellectual Property

PIVOT East is a startup competition and conference held annually since 2011. PIVOT East has officially opened the call for applications for its 2019 edition and will continue to accept applications until midnight EAT on 13th April 2019.

Startups from across the region that meet the requirements can start applying for the competition. Startups may join the competition here

Eligibility criteria:

  • Participating startups must be domiciled in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Ethiopia, South Sudan and Somalia.
  • Entries to the competition will be considered to be startups as per the universal definition of a “startup”* or a startup company (*as done below)
  • Participants must fill the co-founder’s details, startup profile and startup details. 
  • Participating startups must also indicate details of at least two members of their team in their application profile
  • Companies that reached final 25 lists of previous PIVOT East competition cannot compete with products/services previously submitted for the competition, the judging panel will have the discretion to disqualify entries in breach of this requirement.
  • Competitors selected to the final 25 must have set up a legal entity (business name, limited company etc) for their business by the time the call for application closes. Competitors with legal entities already set up will have an added advantage at all judging stages.
  • Decisions of the judging committees at all competition stages will be final.

How to enter the competition:

Make sure you have a venture profile published on the VC4Africa platform


Startups that meet the eligibility criteria may enter their application into the competition through the following steps:-

  1. Go to VC4Africa platform and set up your startup profile HERE
  2. Curate your Startup profile according to given profile headings: Co-founder’s details, Startup profile and Startup details. 

Applicants are advised to use all components available under the profiles section to best describe their strengths and potential for growth.

What is a startup?

For purposes of PIVOT East competition, the definition that “a startup company or startup is a company or temporary organization designed to search for a repeatable and scalable business model” will apply. The competition will accept treatment of innovative software and hardware solutions fronted by companies that otherwise have other solutions as separate startup entries. This will be on the expectation that the innovative solution entered in the competition can be:

  • New products/services by new startups
  • New products/services by former Pivot East finalist
  • Spin-offs from existing companies with the potential/intention to grow into a separate autonomous company.

Intellectual Property and visibility of Startups’ information:

Information submitted through the PIVOT East competition application process and the associated intellectual property belongs to the startups. The information will be visible to organizers of PIVOT including the judging panels for purposes of identifying the best startups to showcase and support through the competition only.


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