Unfortunately due to the current situation with COVID-19 this event cannot take place this semester.

EC Launch is an initiative by the ETH Entrepreneur Club with the goal of enabling entrepreneurially-minded students in the development of their business ideas and the founding of their startup. Teams are selected to participate in a 5-week journey, the “Countdown”, that incorporates the three pillars of the EC – inspiration, education and acceleration in preparation for a final pitch in front of a live audience.

Two competitions run in parallel, one for students with promising ideas and one for incorporated early-stage startups. The workshops for each segment are adapted to their specific needs and while the students focus on defining and shaping their project, the startups will receive valuable inputs on how to refine their business model and tackle the challenges of growing their startup. 20 teams from each category will compete in 3 elimination rounds, after which the top 5 will be given the chance to pitch at StageOne in front of 600 people at our Launch event.

With the support of our partners, we are able to offer attractive prizes to our finalists in both categories. More information will follow shortly.

our partners


Throughout the countdown, you will participate in a series of workshops and deliverables. It is important that your team is available on all of the mentioned dates. Reach out to us if you have any questions!

Kickoff – Capture Project Value and Refine your Idea

Tuesday, April 7th, 18:00-21:00

During the first workshop, students will be instructed by an entrepreneurial expert on how to best capture the value of their project. They will also learn to convert their project into a landing page with the purpose to convince possible stakeholders. The landing page will be submitted in the week following the workshop (see below).

In parallel, the more advanced projects/early-stage startups will receive training with a focus on refining and improving their business model, prioritizing their features and assessing their project value.

Fuck Up Night – Inspirational Event by the ETH Entrepreneur-Club 

Thursday, April 9th, 19:00-22:00 (Optional)


At the Fuck Up Night, Entrepreneurs talk about their failures and the experience they took away from them. In a reflection on their failed businesses or projects, they will share these experiences with an audience. This evening (optional) should inspire the students and take away the fear of failure by showing that failure is almost inevitable on any entrepreneurs path. One step back, two steps forward.

Cut-off point 1 – Landing Page

Thursday, April 16th, Midnight


Students will hand in the landing page that they have created which will be judged by experts and the organisers of the EC Launch. This first cut-off point will take us from 20 student teams to 10.

Workshop 2 – Pitch Training 

Thursday, April 23rd, 19:00-21:00

The selected participants will be instructed and trained on how to present their project to an audience in a short elevator pitch, as the next deliverable will be to hold a pitch of exactly 100 seconds during a ride up the Polybahn (see upcoming section).

Cut-off Point 2 – Polybahn Pitch

Thursday April 30th, 14:00-18:00

During the ride up the Polybahn, the participants will have exactly 100 seconds to pitch their project, followed by a Q&A session on the way down. These pitches will be recorded and judged by an expert jury. Only the best 5 student teams and 5 Startups will be invited to the final Event. 


Fireside Chat

Tuesday, May 7th, 19:00-21:00

After the second elimination, the remaining participants will meet in a more informal atmosphere and have the opportunity to discuss together – with inputs and guidance from experienced entrepreneurs.




Workshop 3 – Convince your Investor & Personalised Coaching

Tuesday, May 12th, 18:00-21:00

During this last workshop, the finalists will get inputs from experts on how to convince an investor in order to secure funding. Each team will also receive personal coaching from selected experts based on the needs of their projects. 

Final Event 

Wednesday, May 20th, 18:00-22:00

At the final event, over 600 attendees and all countdown participants are invited to engage in interactive workshops, join for talks, and get to know the event’s partners at their booths. The event concludes in the final pitches of the teams that made it all the way to the final, your moment to shine! Free admission for all!



Apply now until March 22



Most frequent questions and answers

Visit eth.ec/applytolaunch and fill out the questionnaire. We will use the answers that you provide to evaluate your application and let you know whether you have made the selection.

We do not allow funded ideas/startups. You must not be incorporated. The goal is to support student Ideas, not promote existing startups.

Yes. You can apply to LAUNCH as a team. Make sure you include every team member’s information in your application. 

Everyone – teams of arbitrary size. However, we require a connection to a Swiss university. 

Heuristic, not a rule: If your work brought you to a prototype for the purpose of getting feedback, great. If your past work already represents a respectable part of your product or business, you are no longer what we’re looking for. We will judge this in your application. 

Yes, 20 Student Ideas and 10 early-stage startups will be selected for Launch. If you would like to apply as a startup, apply here

Yes. The exact date and times of each session are published here. Please ensure your availability before applying.

Feasibility, monetization potential, innovation, added social and/or ecological value.

Cutoff Points help us determine the 5 finalists that will pitch in front of a live audience. You can find a description of each cutoff point here.

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