Are you a startup founder or do you have a great idea you want to turn into a business?

The RBC Prize for Innovation and Entrepreneurship is an annual business pitch competition offering $50,000+ in prizes to recognize, reward, and accelerate the University of Toronto’s most innovative student startups. As part of U of T Entrepreneurship Week, the next competition will take place in March 2022. Stay tuned for application announcements and timelines for next year’s RBC Prize competition. Click here to see the 2021 RBC Prize winners.

Selected individuals or teams will compete by showcasing their business idea via a five-minute pitch to a panel of judges for the following prizes:

Early Stage Prizes* Later Stage Prizes**
1st Prize: $10,000

2nd Prize: $5,000

Dongjun Wang Family True Blue Prize (People’s Choice): $4,000

1st Prize: $25,000

2nd Prize: $10,000

Dongjun Wang Family True Blue Prize (People’s Choice): $4,000

Who is eligible to compete?

  • University of Toronto entrepreneurship community: At least one founder is a current full-time U of T student or recent alumni from a full-time program (i.e. graduated no earlier than July 2019).
  • Open to all faculties and sectors across the tri-campus.
  • *Early Stage Prize: Startups must have less than $20,000 cumulative funding or investment (not including research grants), and less than $20,000 cumulative revenue as of November 6, 2021.
  • **Later Stage Prize: Startups must have between $20,000 and $100,000 cumulative funding or investment (not including research grants), and less than $100,000 in cumulative revenue as of November 6, 2021.
  • Entrants must be able to present their pitch to the panelists at U of T Entrepreneurship Week in March 2022 (dates TBC); 
  • Startups are only eligible to pitch one time in the RBC Prize.
  • Companies who are not yet incorporated may apply, however incorporation is required in order to receive the prize money.

Competition Timeline

  1. Competition entry in September/October: Please email the

What is the criteria for judging?

At both the entry and competition day stages, the panel of judges will be looking for the startup’s:

  • Problem Identification / Opportunity: A clearly articulated and compelling value proposition
  • Viability: Clear knowledge of the market and evidence of demand for the solution
  • Growth potential: Sustainable and scalable business model
  • Innovation: Intellectual property and/or strong competitive differentiation
  • Talent: A strong team
  • Communication skills: An effective and persuasive overall Executive Summary and pitch presentation

Applications for 2021 are now closed. Subscribe to our newsletter for 2022 RBC Prize announcements.

Questions about the 2021 RBC Prize for Innovation and Entrepreneurship or application process can be sent to entrepreneurs@utoronto.ca.