Welcome to the 2013 U.S. Imagine Cup Competition!
Microsoft's U.S. Imagine Cup Competition is back. This contest, for the past decade, has been the world’s most prestigious student technology competition. It provides an opportunity for student technologists and aspiring entrepreneurs from all academic backgrounds to collaborate, develop a technology and create a business. You can compete to win some great rewards for your start-up. This year’s competition offers cash prizes, VC introductions, and more. If your start-up is built on Microsoft's technologies, we want you to apply.
Make sure to familiarize yourself with the U.S. Official Rules:
US Online Challenge Award
October 15, 2012
U.S. Imagine Cup Startup Accelerator goes live
October 30, 2012
U.S. Imagine Cup Competition goes live!
January 6, 2013
U.S. Imagine Cup Startup Accelerator submission deadline
February 11, 2013
U.S. Imagine Cup Startup Accelerator admitted teams announced
February 15, 2013
Last day to take Quiz to participate in online challenges
March 11-15, 2013
Startup Boot Camp for top 15 Startup Accelerator teams
March 15, 2013
Deadline to register your team
March 24, 2013
U.S. Imagine Cup Finals submission deadline
April 14, 2013
U.S. Winner [guaranteed spot in the Worldwide Imagine Cup Finals in Russia] + Demo Day teams announced
May 13, 2013
U.S. Imagine Cup Demo Day/ U.S. Finals
July 8-11, 2013
Worldwide Finals in St. Petersburg, Russia
Introducing the U.S. Imagine Cup Student Accelerator
This year, for the first time ever, we will partner with Silicon Valley’s premier startup accelerators to help you bring your idea to life. We invite all teams who wish to compete in our Games, Innovation, and World Citizenship competitions to submit their accelerator application and pitch video today!
Admitted teams will receive mentoring, workshops and technical guidance from startup and technology industry experts. The student accelerator experience is optional. You can choose to directly participate in the Imagine Cup competition without applying for or taking part in the accelerator.
Please review the U.S. Student Accelerator Official Rules and our student accelerator summary.
What's in it for you?
Meet Tier One Investors and Raise Funding: Top U.S. Imagine Cup teams will be invited to pitch their company to representatives from top VCs and the Angel community. This also marks the 2nd year of the worldwide Imagine Cup grant program. Two to four teams will be selected at the end of calendar year 2012 to be part of a $3 million investment by Microsoft to help students turn their ideas into reality. Follow the journey of last year’s winners of the U.S. Imagine Cup competition (and finalists for an Imagine Cup grant) Team FlashFood in our six-part web series.
Publicity and attention for your start-up: Finalists will be featured in Imagine Cup press releases which have previously been picked up by top tech outlets such as Fast Company, Fox News, TechCrunch, etc.
Cash to Build Your Business: This year, the top team across all three core competition categories at U.S. Demo Day will be awarded $10,000 (USD) (only one team gets this prize). The top teams in the other two core competition categories are each awarded $5,000 USD. The top team in each online competition - Windows 8 Apps, Windows Phone and Windows Azure will be awarded $2,000 and be invited to Demo Day along with mentor at Microsoft’s expense to receive their prize and do a quick pitch of their project on stage.
The top three teams from the U.S. Imagine Cup Accelerator will each be awarded $2,000 (USD) in seed money.
Expert Input and Advice: Demo Day will take place in May 2013. The U.S. Imagine Cup Finalists will be invited to pitch their startup and demo to a community of investors and technology-industry professionals. Finalists will spend time with our panel of startup and technology experts and receive direct feedback on their startups. The U.S. Imagine Cup Student Accelerator is an exciting opportunity for student teams to receive mentorship sessions, participate in workshops, and leverage technical guidance to prepare for Demo Day and shine.
Ready to Enter?
Once you've registered, visit My Dashboard to sign up for our competitions and challenges and create your team or teams. You can then submit applications to:
The 2013 U.S. Imagine Cup Competition began accepting applications starting October 30, 2012. You can submit your project for the Games, Innovation, and World Citizenship competitions. You can also submit to the online Challenges Windows 8 Apps, Windows Azure, and Windows Phone until March 24, 2013. You will be able to submit your Imagine Cup competition and challenge application directly from your team’s competition dashboard.