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Applications are CLOSED!

Digital Empowers' Pitch for Purpose competition—organized by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) in collaboration with SEED SPOT—will recognize mission-driven founders whose startups leverage emerging technology and innovation to address social and environmental challenges.   

Pitch for Purpose applicants will gain access to resources to help build their startup, and if among the six leading social entrepreneurs selected to compete in the live-pitch event, founders will receive access to additional in-kind business services, mentorship, and direct capital to take their startup to the next level.  

Pitch for Purpose will be held in conjunction with the 2020 Digital Empowers National Summit taking place virtually on October 7-8.  

Pitching live on a virtual summit stage, founders will also have the chance to promote their ventures to a global audience of technology and social impact leaders across the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. 

The top 6 finalists will also compete for a $15,000 1st place cash prize awarded by TCS 

Finalists will receive: 

  • Mentorship and pre-event pitch coaching from TCS Industry Leaders, the U.S. Chamber Foundation Business and Strategic Partner Network, SEED SPOT Accelerator Community  
  • Free registration for SEED SPOT’s Two-Day Launch Camp—including alumni membership status granting access to tools and resources for life, with benefits including:  
    • Membership to SEED SPOT Community Slack group & Founder Scrums
    • One-on-one mentorship through SEED SPOT's National Mentor Program
    • Exclusive weekly Alumni Newsletter with special offers + priority access to SEED SPOT specialty programming
    • Up to $100,000 in Amazon Web Services cloud computing credits and $10,000 in 0% interest loans through Kiva 
    • Strategic introductions to national venture funds & accelerators
    • Pro bono legal support
    • Among many other discounted products and services
  • At 2020 Digital Empowers National Summit:
    • Media and promotional opportunities  
    • Virtual exhibit space to demo products/services at the 2020 Digital Empowers National Summit
    • TCS will award the first-place founder with a $15,000 cash prize  


  • Social Mission: Your startup is developing products or services that will have a positive impact on your community, the environment, or society at large.    
  • The Founding Team: You must be a founder of the startup, and part of the current executive team.  
  • Stage: Your startup is in its early stage of development. You have a minimum viable product (MVP) and have gotten some user feedback. You do not need to be a registered entity. Revenue is not required. 
  • Funding: Your startup has raised less than $1 million in total funding. 
  • Location: Your startup is based in the United States, but its work may have an international focus. 


At every phase of the competition, entrepreneurs will be evaluated on the strength of the following criteria: 

  • Innovation: What is new or innovative about your proposed solution? 
  • Execution Plan: What is the marketing and sales strategy and how will you scale your offering? 
  • Social Mission: What positive impact does your venture have on society or the environment? 
  • Business Model: How do you generate revenue and how big can your startup become? 
  • Progress: What is your traction and key milestones to date? (product development, partnerships, sales, downloads, website traffic, etc.) 
  • Team: What is the expertise of your team? 

At the 2020 Digital Empowers National Summit, finalists will have three minutes to pitch their startup to a panel of expert judges with three additional minutes for Q&A.  

Key Dates: 

August 21: Application deadline. Submission portal closes at 11:59 p.m. PST.

September 16: Finalists are notified. 

October 7: The Pitch for Purpose competition will take place virtually during the 2020 Digital Empowers Summit.