Queen's Innovation Centre

Dunin-Deshpande Queen's Innovation Centre
Dunin-Deshpande Queen's Innovation Centre

DDQIC Regional Pitch Competition

Mitchell Hall atrium with words Winter Pitch Competition

2021 Dunin-Deshpande Winter Pitch Competition

Application Deadline: Sunday, January 17th at 11:59PM (EST)

Do you need seed funding to advance your startup idea? Or do you need more training, funding and mentorship to grow your company? This competition is for you!

The Winter pitch competition gives early-stage startups the opportunity to compete for seed funding for their venture, or to admit a team of co-founders into the Queen's Innovation Centre Summer Initiative (QICSI) program. Startups will be pitching to a panel of international judges from the DDQIC Global Network to gain valuable feedback on their business model while getting a chance to win significant funding and support to help their company. This competition is open to ventures at Queen's and in the Kingston region. Applicants must be based in the Kingston region but do NOT have to be associated with Queen's University. In the adjudication process, the impact of the venture on the Kingston region will be taken into consideration for all regional applicants.

Stream 1 (Seed funding only):

Stream 2 (Admission to QICSI & Health Innovation stream):

Are you looking for early-stage seed funding to build your idea into a venture? Ventures who have been funded less than $5000 (grants, pitch prizes, loans, equity) are eligible to apply to compete for seed funding in this stream. The pool of funding available is approximately $30,000. 
Working on a venture already, and want to dive in to building it next summer as part of an intensive incubator program? This is an opportunity to get paid to build your business over the summer, while receiving seed funding, training, mentorship and office space as part of QICSI 2021. QICSI is a full-time commitment for the entirety of May to August for co-founders who are committed to building their ventures. The QICSI program is not a wage subsidy program for employees; it is designed only for co-founders. 

Expectations for Applying

The information in the Business Model Canvas/Social Business Model Canvas has been integrated into the application form. All applicants are expected to review the following resources that outline how to effectively complete the Business Model Canvas/Social Business Model Canvas:

1) https://strategyzer.com/canvas/business-model-canvas
2) Business Model Canvas Breakdown (by Jim McLellan)
3) Social Business Model Canvas

Applicants should also refer to these Additional Resources to get a more in depth understanding of what a competitive business model entails.


The application process will happen in two stages:

1) Complete the relevant Application Form below by January 17, 2021 at 11:59PM (EST). If you have a social enterprise or non-profit, please submit your application via the “Social Business Model Application Form”. All other applicants can submit via the “Traditional Business Model Application Form” link.

2) Pitch to the DDQIC team and a panel of Global Network judges. Details about pitch time will be confirmed following the successful completion of the application process. If you are pitching for admission into QICSI through Stream 2, all co-founders who want to be part of QICSI must be present for the pitch. 

Pitch Event

Stream 1: Thursday, January 21st (Time TBD)

Stream 2: Thursday, January 28th (Time TBD)

The Regional Pitch Competition Series is made up of two pitch competitions per year in the winter and summer. The next opportunity to pitch in the series will be in the Summer Pitch Competition (August 2021).