REGULATIONS

“VietChallenge” in these Rules and Regulations means the Organizing Committee of the VietChallenge 2019 Competition, which is hosted by the Association of Vietnamese Students and Professionals in the United States.

1. Screening Round:

a. Eligibility:  

  • The competition is only open to teams consisting of at least two members, and at least one member must be a Vietnamese citizen or of Vietnamese descent.  Except otherwise provided by VietChallenge, all team members must be at least 18 years of age.
  • The competition is open to applications in all industries.  
  • There is no limit to the number of applications a team can submit.  

b. Application Processing Fee:

  • Application Fee:
    • Early Bird (December 1 - December 30): $7
    • Regular (December 30 - January 30): $15
  • To qualify for Early Bird fee, applicant must pay the fee by December 30, but can submit the application after the Early Bird deadline has passed.
  • VietChallenge will also consider waiving the Application Processing Fee for entrepreneur teams with special circumstances on a case by case basis. Any request for waiver of application fee should be submitted to contact@vietchallenge.org with details of the special circumstances.

c. Entry Materials:

1) Mandatory Materials:

Each competition entrant must create and submit an online entry form via our website at www.vietchallenge.org and submit the following materials:

(a) Confirmation Code in the Receipt for payment of Application Processing Fee

(b) Submit a pitch deck in the form of a slide presentation file. The pitch deck shall address all of the following questions:

- What market does your team address?

- What is the problem in that market?

- How big is the market?

- How does your team address the problem? What is your business model? How will the business make money?

- Why is your solution better than the existing methods?

- Have you built a prototype, run a pilot or acquired customers?

- Your team profile (relevant expertise): Please list the names and roles of all co-founders in your team and give brief details about each co-founder's relevant experience and education.

(b) Submit a one-to-three-minute video pitching the team’s business idea, and

(c) Fill out the application form requested by VietChallenge.

2) Optional Materials: A competition entrant may submit other documents and materials in support of their application. However, VietChallenge reserves the right to disregard any material deemed irrelevant to the business plan proposed.

3) Unless otherwise agreed with entrants: VietChallenge has the right to publish and distribute participants’ Entry Materials, Mandatory Materials, and Optional Materials, including for purposes of promoting the competition or showcasing its participants to VietChallenge’s investors and the public, as well as training purposes. If a team does not want VietChallenge to publish and/or distribute its Entry Materials in any manner, it shall inform VietChallenge of its request via our email at contact@vietchallenge.org. VietChallenge retains the right to approve or reject such request.

4) All materials have to be in English.

c. Ineligibility:

  • Teams and members of teams that won the first places in past VietChallenge competitions are not eligible to apply. Other past Finalists are eligible to compete in the Vietchallenge 2019 with projects that are different from the projects submitted for the competition the year they were Finalists.
  • Startups and businesses that have raised a total amount of more than US$ 1,000,000 (one million US Dollar) in all  funding rounds prior to December 1, 2018 are not eligible to compete in VietChallenge 2019.

d. Conflicts of Interest:

  • Volunteers, judges, mentors, and Members of the Organizing Committee of VietChallenge 2019 and Direct Relatives of the Members of the Organizing Committee MAY NOT apply. Direct Relatives means spouses, parents, children, and siblings whether by blood, adoption, or marriage.  The list of the Members of the Organizing Committee, as may be updated from time to time, can be found here.

e. Timeline

  • VietChallenge 2019 Screening Round begins accepting applications at 00:01 a.m. U.S. Eastern Standard Time (EST) on December 1, 2018.  The application deadline is 11:59 p.m. U.S. Eastern Standard Time (EST) on January 30, 2019.  No late submission shall be accepted and VietChallenge only accepts applications that meet all the requirements from the above sections 1(a) to 1(e).
  • Interviews for Screening Round will start on February 15, 2019.
  • The result of the Screening Round will be announced on March 1, 2019.  
  • If there is any change to any of the date listed in this Regulation due to unforeseen circumstances, VietChallenge reserves the right to adjust the date and will provide notices to participating teams in advance.

f. Mentorship Program

  • VietChallenge will provide an opportunity for all the teams entering the Regional Rounds of the Vietnam Track and the Semi-Final Round of the International Track to participate in the First- Round Mentorship Program. 6 teams entering the VietChallenge 2019 Final Round will also participate in a subsequent Final Mentorship Program. Through these mentorship programs, competing teams receive feedback and recommendation from experienced business mentors to improve their business ideas and plans. Each team’s progression throughout the mentorship program is also a factor that maybe considered by judges in the overall assessment of the entrepreneurship projects.
  • Details of the mentorship programs will be updated before the result announcement of the respective rounds.  

2. Vietnam Round and International Semi-Final Round:

a. Post-Screening-Round Vietnam Track:

  • Teams that have at least the super majority (2/3) of its founders as indicated in their Application Form who reside in Vietnam permanently will be eligible to compete in the Vietnam track of VietChallenge 2019 (“Vietnam’s Teams”).  In case a team has two founders, one of who resides in Vietnam and the other one does not, VietChallenge, based on overall assessment of contestants and the team’s geographic choice, can choose to assign a team to the Vietnam Track or International Track.  
  • On March 1, 2019, VietChallenge will announce 12 teams that advance to the Regional Rounds of the Vietnam Track. VietChallenge reserves the right to assign the team to either the Hanoi Regional Round or the Ho Chi Minh City Regional Round. This, however, will not affect the chance of each team to advance to the next round.
  • On May 17, 2019, VietChallenge will organize our Regional Round in Hanoi.  
  • On May 24, 2019, VietChallenge will organize our Regional Round in Ho Chi Minh City.
  • On May 24, 2019, VietChallenge will select a total of six (6) teams from the common pool comprised of contestants in both the Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City Regional Rounds to advance to the Vietnam National Round, based solely on the merit of the proposing entrepreneurship ideas, regardless of their geographic location.
  • Vietnam National Round:  On June 22, 2019, VietChallenge will organize the Vietnam National Round in Hanoi. All the competing teams in the Vietnam National Round will be judged along side the competing teams in the International Semi-Final Round for the purposes of deciding which teams will advance to the Final Round at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Boston, Massachusetts). A total of six (6) teams among the teams competing in the Vietnam National Round and the International Semi-Final Round will be chosen to advance to the Final Round based solely on the merits of each team’s entrepreneurship idea and pitching performance regardless of their geographic location.

b. Post-Screening-Round International Track:

  • On March 1, 2019, we will announce six (6) teams eligible to advance to the International Semi-Final Round of VietChallenge.
  • On June 16, 2019, the International Semi-Final Round of VietChallenge will be held virtually for teams outside of Vietnam. All the competing teams in the International Semi-Final Round will be judged along side the competing teams in the Vietnam National Round for the purposes of deciding which teams will advance to the Final Round. A total of six (6) teams among the teams competing in the Vietnam National Round and the International Semi-Final Round will be chosen to advance to the Final Round, based solely on the merit of the entrepreneurship idea, without regard to the maximum number of team that can come from either the Vietnam Track or the International Track.  
    • The results of both the International Semi-Final Round and the Vietnam National Round will be announced altogether on June 22, 2019, specifying the 6 finalists who will advance to the Final Round.
    • At any round, if a team withdraws or is disqualified from continued participation in the competition, VietChallenge will replace such team with a team from the pool of applicants at our discretion.

3. Final Round:

a. Final Mentorship Program: Details of the mentorship program, including the program structure and stipends, for 6 teams eligible to compete in the Final Round will be updated before the result announcement of the International Semi-Final Round.

b. Final Round 

  • The Final Round of the Competition will be held at Massachusetts Institute of Technology on September 7, 2019.   If a team withdraws from the Final Round or is disqualified from continued participation in the competition, VietChallenge will replace such team with a team from the pool of semi-finalists at our discretion.
  • Each finalist shall have 15 minutes to pitch their business ideas in front of the Board of Judges and the audience of the VietChallenge Final Round:
    • 5 minutes shall be allocated for pitching and demo showcase; AND
    • 10 minutes shall be allocated to Q&A
  • Each team is required to submit documents they plan to present at the Semi-Final Round no later than May 10, 2019. Any late submission shall not be accepted unless otherwise decided by VietChallenge.  
  • The Final Round shall be recorded, published and distributed by VietChallenge to its investors and the public. VietChallenge retains all titles and rights to publish, webcast, distribute, telecast all the Final Round content.

c. Obligations of the Finalists

  1. Finalists are required to attend the Reception to be held on the evening of September 6, 2019. Details of the Reception are to be distributed later by VietChallenge. Failure to attend the Reception can result in a team’s elimination from the Final Round unless otherwise decided by VietChallenge.
  2. All teams must have at least one member representing the team at the Final Round.  We do not allow remote pitching unless in exceptional circumstances, which shall be decided by VietChallenge Committee on a case-by-case basis.
  3. Priority Investors are investors whose contribution are essential to the success of VietChallenge. A complete list of Priority Investors shall be published on its website before the date of the Final Round.
  4. Right of First Refusal:  Within a year from the date of VietChallenge Final Round, i.e., September 7, 2019, VietChallenge’s Priority Investors have the right of first refusal in participating in any fundraising round of a Finalist.  This means that if a Finalist plans to raise funds for its project competed at VietChallenge, whether in the form of issuing ownership interests in exchange for funds or otherwise, it shall submit its proposal to all VietChallenge’s Priority Investors first with the same terms and conditions it would offer a third party at the time. Each Priority Investor shall have 30 days to respond to a proposal (“Response Period”).  If all Priority Investors express that they are not interested in the proposal, or fail to respond within the Response Period, the team has the right to proceed to raise funding from third parties. If a Priority Investor is interested in the proposal, the team is obligated to negotiate with the interested Priority Investor and shall proceed to negotiate with a third party only upon failure to reach an preliminary agreement with the interested Investor within 60 days from the date of negotiation.
  5. Each Finalist is required to give back to VietChallenge at a minimum of 1% of every $100,000 a Finalist is able to raise for funding their project after the competition.  This amount of money shall be used by VietChallenge to support aspiring Vietnamese entrepreneurs in future VietChallenge competitions.

4. Awards and Stipends:

a. The winner of VietChallenge 2019 will receive a cash prize of US$25,000. The second prize is $5,000. There are four third prizes of $2,000 each to be given out.

b. The net value of each cash prize, after deducting all applicable taxes and fees under applicable laws, shall be made via check or bank transfer to each team within 6 months from the date of the Final Round. Each contestant is obligated to provide in full proper documentation, at VietChallenge’s request, for the transfer and payment of these prizes as required by law.

5. Intellectual Property:

VietChallenge takes no part in and has no liability for the domestic or international intellectual property rights of competition participants.

- Participants are responsible for their own intellectual property.

- Participants must keep confidential information confidential.

Except that competing teams will grant all rights and title of photographic and electronic reproduction of the team’s projects pitching within the context of the competition to VietChallenge.

6. Immorality

VietChallenge reserves the right to disqualify participants who engage in immoral activities, including lying and cheating, or any activity that may harm or adversely affect the image of VietChallenge or other participants.

7. Originality

All work and submissions of each entrant must be original to the entrant/team.

8. Compliance & Disqualification

All participants must comply with the rules. Any violation of the rules will disqualify an entrant’s team from the competition, and result in forfeiture of any awards awarded to the team.

9. Updates

VietChallenge may update the competition rules throughout the competition. All updates will be posted on the VietChallenge website at www.vietchallenge.org from time to time.  These Rules include by incorporation any material posted on the VietChallenge website; in the case of conflict, the Competition Rules & Regulations supersede any other materials.

10. Governing Law

These Rules and Regulations shall be governed by the laws of Massachusetts.  Any dispute between VietChallenge and a participant shall be resolved amicably by both parties.  Each party has the right to submit the dispute to a competent court of Massachusetts only in case both parties have failed to amicably reach an agreement to resolve the dispute within 180 days from the date of the dispute.