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StartCon.com , Australia’s leading technology, startup, corporate innovation & growth conference,announces the launch of Pitch for $1 Million

XFactor meets startups in this global pitching competition for a total of USD$1m in venture financing from trailblazing US investors, EDGE196™.

Startups to battle it out for US$1 million!

XFactor meets startups in this global pitching competition 


StartCon, Australia’s leading technology, startup, corporate innovation & growth conference, today announces the launch of Pitch for $1 Million, one of the world’s largest startup pitch competitions where entrepreneurs battle it out for a total of USD$1m in venture financing from trailblazing US investors, EDGE196™.


“The startup ecosystem outside of North America is increasingly showing promise, prompting us to partner with StartCon, which has a track record of success in running startup pitch contests before. We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to work together to give a shot to the next up and comers in these regions that are, as yet, unexplored by EDGE196™,” says Jay Patel, founder of EDGE196™.


The Pitch for $1 Million competition aims to surface highly promising companies outside of traditional venture markets but across regions where billions of people live. This year, the competition will be running in regions including China, Korea, Japan, UAE, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand.


Submissions can be made online with entries encouraged from startups in all sectors including, but not limited to, Advanced Manufacturing, Robotics, Blockchain, AI, Big Data, Adtech, Digital Media, Edtech and more.


The first regional final will be held in Shanghai, China on October 24th, 2019 in partnership with SOSV: The Accelerator VC. SOSV runs the Chinaccelerator, a seed-funding program in China that allows entrepreneurs to create startup companies in the tech industry. The event will be held at Hero Center, level 1, West Entrance, No. 28 Yuyuam East Rd. Jing'An District, Shanghai at 7pm.


The second regional final will be held in Seoul, Korea on October 30th, 2019 in partnership with Austrade, the Australian Government’s trade and investment commission, and KOTRA, the state-funded trade and investment promotion organization operated by the Government of South Korea. The event will be held at Kintex Exhibition Center Hall 8 at 10am.


The Australian regional finals will be held in Sydney at StartCon, Australia’s largest startup and growth conference on November 22nd and 23rd 2019.


Regional finals in other countries will take place following this with each country competing at the Grand Final for the US$1 million in investment in March 2020.




The winner of the 2018 StartCon Pitch for $1 Million competition was Daitum, an Australian cloud-based AI company with a vision to make decision analytics available to everyone. Co-founder and CEO Luigi Barone says:

StartCon was a watershed milestone for us at Daitum. Before StartCon, we were a seven person emerging business facing the perennial challenges of most bootstrapped start-ups: how to fund growth on a tight budget. With plenty of dreams and ambition, realising them was always constrained by the realities of bringing revenue into the business. Winning at StartCon allowed us to rapidly accelerate our story and bring forward those dreams, funding the next stages of product development and marketing and outreach endeavours.

We’ve doubled the size of our team, brought on specialist staff to lead hard-to-fund functions like business development and customer success, and increased our marketing efforts from zero to significant. We’re extremely grateful to StartCon and the Pitch for $1 Million competition for giving us this opportunity and we’re envious of all the teams competing this year.  Good luck, and pitch hard!


“This year, we’re looking for startups with founders and a team who demonstrate their passion and commitment, can prove an ever-expanding target market for their product and service alongside realistic and aggressive projections, and convey their exit strategy for investors,” says Jay Patel, founder of EDGE196™.


EDGE196™ is a trailblazing company of experienced investors and technical experts in the fields of all innovative technologies, business development and global startup ecosystems and has previously invested in JointerOTPPAYFunding Tree, Hackmania and EquityUp among others.


With the contest launch, Jay Patel, and Matt Barrie, Chief Executive and founder of the world’s largest freelancing and crowdsourcing marketplace, Freelancer.com, offer competitors their five top tips for a great pitch:



from Matt Barrie, founder and CEO of Freelancer.com

Jay Patel, founder and CEO of EDGE196™


1. It’s all about the team.

Have you got the right team to help you succeed? No startup gets anywhere alone so demonstrate the passion, commitment and expertise of your whole team.


2. Show your investors the money.

How are you acquiring your customers and what’s your revenue model? Are you making money yet? Be clear and concise about your pricing model, long term value of a customer and customer acquisition costs.


3. Prove your growth trajectory.

Do you have an ever expanding target market for your product or service? Never undersell yourself: your business plan should be both realistic and aggressive.


4. Demonstrate your value.

How are you changing or disrupting the world or your industry and why is what you’re doing better than what’s already out there. Give the answer to, ‘So, what?’ with everything you say rather than assuming your audience will create the link for you.


5. Practice your pitch. A thousand times.

Have you really practised enough? Take previous pitch feedback on board, ask anyone who will listen to give feedback and remember to prepare for questions.

“North American startup ecosystems have dominated for investors for some time now, yet vibrant ecosystems in the APAC region increasingly present a great opportunity for investment, says Lana Vickeridge-Smith, CEO of StartCon. “This type of opportunity is a real game-changer for startups looking to grow and scale and we wish every entrant the best of luck.” 


Total prize pool is USD$1m (or AUD$1.5m) with three prizes to be awarded:

  • 1st: AUD $1,000,000 investment

  • 2nd: AUD $300,000 investment 

  • 3rd: AUD $200,000 investment


Entries can be submitted at StartCon.com.




About StartCon 

StartCon (formerly SydStart) is the largest Australian startup and growth conference, expo and entrepreneur community, established in 2009. Thousands of technology startup professionals, investors and ecosystem participants have already experienced StartCon events. This year’s conference will be held on November 22nd & 23rd at Royal Randwick Racecourse, with world-class international speakers in entrepreneurship and growth marketing, high quality workshops and an expo showcasing the biggest tech names and high-growth startups in Asia Pacific. http://www.startcon.com

About EDGE196™

EDGE196™ is a trailblazing company of experienced investors and technical experts in the fields of all innovative technologies, business development and Global Startup Ecosystems. EDGE196™’s vision is to act as a catalyst between Startups, Investors, and Service Providers; to open avenues to a marketplace in a cross-border ecosystem; and to use the digital share economy to assist young companies to realize their potential through the 3-M solutions of EDGE196™ http://www.edge196.com