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Applications to the next VFPC investment round are closed.

Get ready to pitch on a virtual stage for a chance to get up to $100K* in investment funding and exposure.

Notify me when the next VFPC applications open

Application criteria

All interested startups must meet the following two basic criteria:

  • Products must be tech-based and core to the company’s business model
  • Company must not have received more than $250,000 in external funds (e.g., convertible debt, equity), including government grants (e.g., Ontario’s OCE SmartStart)

Startups are not required to have a University of Waterloo student or alumni as part of the team under Criteria A and Criteria B below.

There are three ways to qualify:

A. Velocity-Supported Startup

You’ve been a part of the Velocity incubator program for at least 3 months.

B. Non-Velocity-Supported Startup

If you are interested in the investment but are not currently part of our Velocity incubator program, you must submit your incubator program application (and be accepted into the program) 4 months prior to the next pitch competition.

C. University of Waterloo student or alumni

Your startup has at least one co-founder who is currently, or has been, a University of Waterloo student, who owns at least 20% of the company. In addition,

  • This individual must have been a continuing full-time student within 2 years, OR
  • Completed their degree within 10 years and started their company less than two years ago.

Application process

The VFPC investment round follows a 3-step process.

Note: You do not have to indicate your interest in either one of our investment funds for VFPC. You will automatically be considered for both.

Please note that results from the final two steps are used to create a composite score that will determine the investment winners. 

1. Written Application

You must provide a general outline of your business, including:

  • Business name
  • Product concept
  • Market opportunity
  • Team profile

2. Interview

If your written application is chosen, you will be granted an interview. 

All interviews are 15 minutes in length and will include two key components: a three-minute pitch and 10 minutes of rapid-fire questions from the judges.

Your three-minute pitch should include the following elements:

  • Problem
  • Solution
  • Market and size
  • Traction and progress
  • Team

3. Competition

If you have a successful interview, you will be asked to participate in a competition with startup executives, angel investors, or early-stage VCs as independent judges. You will have three minutes to pitch your business to these independent judges.

Pitch competition application & interview tips

Tip 01

Applications will be judged on clarity, the problem statement, and the size of the market opportunity.

Tip 02

The team profile is very important! Tell us how well your team works together, how your skills will complement each other, and how passionate you are about the problem you’re solving!

Tip 03

During the interview, the judges will quiz you on your business model, team composition, market, challenges, and ability to execute. Be prepared!

Tip 04

Please come with a product demo so that we can see how you plan on executing your vision during the interview.

Tip 05

Don’t have a demo? Please come prepared to outline exactly how you see your product working during the interview.

Tip 06

Relax and have fun!

Looking to apply for the next round of VFPC (Velocity Fund Pitch Competition)?

Join the Competition mailing list