How it works

Anyone in the 10-counties surrounding Charlotte can submit an idea. It only takes a minute.

  • Ideas in the form of a 53-second video can be submitted online May 1 thru May 31, 2022.
  • Entry is limited to residents in the following NC counties: Anson, Cabarrus, Cleveland, Gaston, Iredell, Lincoln, Mecklenburg, Rowan, Stanly and Union.
  • The 53 finalists will be announced in early June 2022. 
  • Mid-June finalists participate in online training sessions to help prepare for the next round.
  • The 53 finalists pitch the week of July 11, 2022 for a chance to place as a top semi-finalists.  
  • The top ten semi-finalists will be announced on Monday, July 18, 2022. Check Facebook or Twitter social channels for the reveal. 
  • The top ten compete for first, second and third place at Virtual Pitch Day which will be broadcast to a public audience.


  • First place winner $10,000
  • Second place winner $  5,000
  • Third place winner $  2,500
  • Top 10 finalists $     250     

Pitch Day Broadcast Event

Join us as the top ten finalists pitch and compete for $10K in seed money. If you're a fan of the hit show Shark Tank you'll want to tune into the livestream to watch and cheer on these local entrepreneurs! Which amazing idea will take the top spot and $10K in this years 53 Ideas Business Competition? Watch the online broadcast to find out on August 4 at 4 pm. 


Competition Entry

Entries for the 53 Ideas Pitch Competition are open now through May 31, 2022.  When you are ready to record or upload your 53-second business idea click the button below. Recording and uploading will vary based on the device you are using to submit your entry.  If you need instructions to record or upload check out these available guides. 

Training Events

Our goal is not only to help you perfect your pitch but to help you learn how to turn your idea into a viable business. As part of this initiative we will have a period for preparation leading up to the round two pitches which will include no cost training and counseling.

53 Ideas: Business Model Canvas
Tuesday, June 14, 4-6 pm
Register now


53 Ideas: Customer Discovery
Wednesday, June 15, 4-6 pm
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53 Ideas: Understanding the Pitch
Thursday, June 16, 4-6 pm
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53 Ideas: Figuring Out Your Financials
Tuesday, June 21, 4-6 pm
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53 Ideas: Your Business Bankable

Wednesday, June 22, 4-6 pm
Register now

    53 Ideas: Polishing Your Pitch
Thursday, June 23, 4-6 pm
Register now

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