Global Innovation through Science and Technology (GIST) Catalyst Pitch Competition 2019 for young STEM entrepreneurs ($450,000 USD in startup resources)

Application Deadline:

Do you have an investment-ready scale-up? Have you created an innovative solution to a sustainability challenge facing your community? If you answered yes to either of these questions, then you will want to compete in GIST Catalyst 2019!

GIST Catalyst is your chance to showcase your scale-up to high net worth, high impact individuals and U.S. private sector companies looking for innovative scale-ups. Catalyst has awarded more than $450,000 USD in startup resources, and has worked with companies such as Amazon Web Services, Google, Alice, Cognizant, and Dell.

This year, the U.S. Department of State is excited to announce that the 2019 Global Innovation through Science and Technology (GIST) Catalyst pitch competition will be taking place during the 2019 Global Entrepreneurship Summit in The Hague, Netherlands, June 4-5, 2019.

GES 2019 offers an unparalleled stage for scale-ups and a chance to showcase their enterprises before a selected group of top investors, founders, funders, experts, and policy makers. These are influential individuals and GIST Catalyst is how you can make sure they notice your venture.


GIST Catalyst pitch competition applicants must meet all of the following criteria to be eligible to participate at the 2019 Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES):

1) The applicants will only be selected from the invited and registered attendees of GES 2019 who indicated an interest in the pitch competition in their application

2) In order to progress in the competition applicants must submit all required components (i.e. headshot, 90 second pitch video, business summary and background).

3) All application materials must be received by the submission deadline.

5) All applicants must have an investment ready scale-up. This pitch competition will not accept startup ideas or early stage startups.

4) Only applications with scale-ups that focus on solutions with market potential in the following sectors will be eligible:

  • Health
  • Energy
  • Water
  • Food/Agriculture
  • Connectivity/Infrastructure

5) Applicants can be male or female.  GIST strongly encourages female entrepreneurs.

6) Teams/individuals may only enter the competition once.

7) For a team application, each team must select one member who will be the applicant for the team in the competition. In team situations, eligibility is determined by the applicant team member, not the team as a whole. This member does not have to occupy a particular position on the team, (e.g., CEO); however, their role and responsibilities within the team must be documented in the application. Should the application progress to the finals, the applicant team member will represent the team at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES). The applicant team member is hereafter referred to as the applicant and will be the recipient of any prizes.null

GIST Catalyst

GIST Catalyst offers young STEM entrepreneurs the opportunity elevate their pitch and showcase their scale-up on a global stage, while receiving valuable startup training from American academics who are leaders in the field of entrepreneurship.

Catalyst also provides participating entrepreneurs with the opportunity to increase the visibility of their scale-up. In order to compete in the finals at GES, Catalyst participants must advance through a global public vote. This is an opportunity to promote your scale-up to your community, network, and the world – showcasing your innovation and attracting support. In order to participate in the public vote, all semifinalists will need to make a pitch video.

GIST Catalyst has helped innovators secure funding for their ventures, collaborate with the U.S. private sector, and build new partnerships.  Launched during GES 2017 in Hyderabad, India, Catalyst gave 24 entrepreneurs the opportunity to showcase their scale-ups to high-impact investors, policy makers, and leaders in the U.S. private sector, and compete for more than $450,000 USD in startup resources.

How to Apply

Entrepreneurs with investment ready scale-ups that address global challenges in health, energy, water, food/agriculture, and connectivity/infrastructure are encouraged to apply to the 2019 GIST Catalyst pitch competition.

In order to apply, interested entrepreneurs must first submit an application to GES 2019. In the GES application there is a section for applicants to confirm they want to participate in the GIST Network pitch competition. Click on that box in order to indicate that you are interested in competing in GIST Catalyst 2019. Once confirmed, the GIST Catalyst team will reach out with further details and instructions.

Please note, you will need to make a 90 second pitch video for your GIST Catalyst application. This video will be used during the global public vote, allowing people around the world the chance to learn more about you and your scale-up. Please ensure your pitch video is concise, high-quality and no longer than 90 seconds.

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the GIST Catalyst Pitch Competition 2019


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