Startups4Peace 2019

Acceleration Program is now accepting applications!

Startups4Peace is a competition and mini acceleration program co-funded by the Embassy of Finland and the Innovative Entrepreneurship project, implemented by NI-CO and funded by the European Union. The program is in partnership with the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce and is implemented by Startup Cyprus.

We aim to encourage innovative startup entrepreneurship with intercommunal vision in Cyprus, to bring together and increase contacts between the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot startup communities and support young entrepreneurs in developing their businesses.

Two selected startups will get the opportunity to attend the legendary startup event SLUSH in Helsinki , Finland on November 21–22 2019

Startups4Peace kicked-off on May 10th. The application call for the Aceleration Program is now open. Deadline: May 31st at midnight!

Important facts, criteria and info for the application process for Startups4Peace2019

Startups4Peace at Slush 2018

Who Can Apply:

Applicants must be residents of Cyprus. Preference is given to teams with members from both communities. We are looking for startups with innovative business ideas with growth potential, incorporating a vision and strategy for a united Cyprus.

Finalist startups will be chosen on a competitive base. Application into the S4P Acceleration program is available here. The winners will be selected on the basis of their business idea and market potential, as well as how well the idea incorporates the vision for the whole Cyprus based on the STARTUPS 4 PEACE Selection Criteria. Looking into the future is an element of a successful application. Practically, teams must get points in both Criteria, Business and Cooperation.

The successful finalist startups will participate in the Startup Bootcamps of the Startups4Peace 2019 edition, with amazing speakers and mentors from the European startup ecosystem, for a hands-on learning experience and to literally help them startup. Participation in the bootcamps by at least one team member (max of two) is a prerequisite for graduation.

The grand final of the program is the Starups4Peace Pitch Battle. Selected startups will pitch their ideas to our expert jury dragon’s den style. The winning startups will participate in our Pitch Bootcamp to get ready for Slush!

Application Selection Criteria:

Your startup will be judged on two sets of criteria: Business Criteria with a 60% weight and Cooperation Criteria with a 40% weight.

Business Criteria. You essentially need to convince us that your idea can scale globally. To do that you need to answer the following questions convincingly:

i. Are you actually solving a problem? Does the solution solve a core need / problem?

ii. Do you have a clear value proposition / Clear benefit to the customer?

iii. Have you identified a specific target market?

iv. Is it unique? — how good / innovative / viable is the idea?

v. Market potential — how scalable is the product or service? Can you conquer the world?

vi. How will you differentiate from the competition?

vii. How will you make money?

viii. What is your go-to-market / launch strategy?

ix. Team? — ability to execute

Cooperation Criteria.

1. Team composition: the Founders of your startup / team must be Cypriots in their majority (team members from other countries are allowed)

2. Cooperation: Preference will be given to intercommunal teams. That is teams that have at least one founder from the Greek Cypriot community and at least one from the Turkish Cypriot community. In absence of this, the startup must be aim convincingly to increase co-operation between the Greek Cypriot and the Turkish Cypriot communities, joint business ideas and taking into consideration opportunities of operating in a united country. You need to be convincing!


  1. Teams must address both Criteria, Business and Cooperation, convincingly.
  2. The panel may also select startups from the Turkish Cypriot community and from Greek Cypriot Community.

APPLY: You can find the link to apply here

Application Call is open from May 10, 2019 till May 31st (midnight).

Acceleration Program

Once you apply a jury will select a maximum of 10 eligible teams to participate in this year’s acceleration program. You will be notified if you are a finalist via email on June 2nd. Make sure you provide a valid email in your application and watch your mailbox!


If you are selected to participate in the Acceleration Program you need to now that participation in the Bootcamps is mandatory! This means if a team misses a bootcamp they are immediately disqualified and cannot participate in the finals.

Up to 2 members per startup team can participate in the bootcamps. One room per startup, full board and trasnportation to the bootcamps is covered by S4P.

Bootcamp 1: June 7th — June 9th

A 2-day bootcamp in Troodos (Platres). This will be an ice breaker into the program. Introduction and work on the Business Model Canvas methodology, customer discovery provess, Opportunity Recognition. S4P Mentors will be available on site to to support the teams. Bootcamp 1 is facilitated by Teemu Polo.

Bootcamp 2: Sept /ealy October 2019

A 2-day bootcamp in Troodos. Topics: Pitching & Mentoring. This Bootcamp is intended to be an intensive training to work on your pitch and prepare the teams for the finals. Bootcamp 2 will be facilitated by two experienced speakers TBA later.

Pitch Battle: October 2019

This is the final competition and celebration event of the Startups4Peace Bootcamp. Teams successfully going through the Acceleration program pitch to a jury — dragons den style. We choose the two winning teams that attend Slush.

Winners Slush Prep Bootcamp: November 2019

A Slush preparatory workshop for the winners

Slush: November 21–22, HELSINKI

This is the grand award of the program. The two winning startups (max 2 Cypriot members per startup) attend Slush in Helsinki. Flights from LCA airport to HEL and back, accomodation and tickets to Slush are covered by Startups4Peace. We will arrive in Helsinki on November 19th and return to LCA on November 23rd. Winning teams need to make sure they will be available and have the necessary documents to travel.

APPLY: You can find the link to apply here

Application Call is open from May 10, 2019 till May 31st (midnight).

If you have any questions pls email:

A taste of Startups4Peace here!

Enjoy and apply here to be part of the Startups4Peace 2019 experence!