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About Challenge Cup

Challenge Cup hosted by 1776 and Revolution


The global Challenge Cup competition continues to seek the most innovative startups solving the world’s most complex challenges. Challenge Cup is presented in partnership again with investment firm Revolution, an active champion for the emergence of entrepreneurial communities and startups outside of Silicon Valley.

Expanding from 50 cities last year to 75 this year, the entire program runs on 1776’s UNION network. UNION is a digital platform connects startup ecosystems together around the world, providing entrepreneurs everywhere the resources and tools they need to be successful.

Challenge Cup culminates in the Challenge Festival, a multi-day event taking place in January 2018.

4 years running

1776 launched Challenge Cup in 2013 to shake up the startup world. The first global startup pitch competition of its magnitude, Challenge Cup set out to find the most promising, innovative startups around the globe while connecting and shining a light on startup ecosystems everywhere.

In 2016, Challenge Cup took 1776 to more than 50 cities — from Nairobi to Singapore to Boise, everywhere we went, we met brilliant entrepreneurs and startup champions innovating to solve complex challenges. Through Challenge Cup local pitch competitions, thousands of entrepreneurs have shared their ideas on the global stage. In city after city, we found smart companies poised to scale, impact regulated industries, create jobs and deliver returns to their investors.

From smartwatches that write braille to a platform that tests a company’s security using white hat hacker methods, Challenge Cup competitors exemplify the type of game-changing ideas 1776 is working to advance.

We know that smart entrepreneurs armed with the right partners and funding can create livable and responsive cities around the world; provide lifelong learning to ensure student success in the 21st century; fast-track the food system of the future; and, most importantly — realize a global ecosystem where anyone, anywhere can scale a promising startup.

Challenge Cup Champions

At 1776, we believe entrepreneurs have the power to change the world. Need more convincing? Learn about the startups that won Challenge Cup in the past!

MUrgency, 2016 Challenge Cup Champion

Meet the startup who won it all at Challenge Cup Global Finals 2016! MUrgency is a Dubai-based company that uses the power of mobile technology and networks to create one seamless global emergency response network.

Check out MUrgency


Twiga, 2015 Challenge Cup Champion

This startup won Challenge Cup Global Finals 2015 and further proved that innovation is everywhere — like Nairobi, Kenya! Twiga is a mobile-based supply platform for Africa’s retail outlets, kiosks, and market stalls.

Check out Twiga


HandUp, 2014 Challenge Cup Champion

For the very first Challenge Cup Global Finals in 2014, a startup tackling a truly complex challenge took home the grand prize. HandUp makes giving to nonprofit organizations and their clients easy, secure and transparent — and your donation goes directly to the cause.

Check out HandUp


In the News

Newsweek — Challenge Cup Seeks World-Saving Innovations

Washington Business Journal — And the winner of the 1776 Challenge Cup is …

Washington Post — 1776’s Challenge Cup winners are startups for PTAs, OB-GYNs and hydroponic farmers

Washington Post — Dozens of the world’s rising entrepreneurs descend on D.C. for global competition


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