Starting a social enterprise? Need $10,000? Apply for the Zielsdorf Family Pitch Competition today!

The 2015 Irish Impact Social Entrepreneurship Conference is right around the corner! Register now for this exceptional opportunity to learn more about impact investing from institutional investors, private equity and social enterprise funders, social entrepreneurs and many other amazing practitioners.  The conference takes place on the University of Notre Dame campus on October 29 and 30.

Do you have a social venture that needs start-up or early seed capital?  Would you like the chance to win $10,000? Then apply for the Zielsdorf Family Pitch Competition, which will be held Friday afternoon, October 30, and will close out the Irish Impact conference!

Impact Investing Infographic

Funded by the generosity of the Zielsdorf Family Foundation, the Zielsdorf Family Pitch Competition gives social entrepreneurs from around the globe the chance to present their start-ups to an investment committee for the chance to win $10,000.

Every social enterprise – whether for profit, nonprofit or hybrid – requires startup capital. The Irish Impact organizing committee will assemble a panel of expert judges to hear live funding pitches from a select group of social entrepreneurs. These social entrepreneurs should be attacking a broad array of global challenges, whether through innovations in healthcare, food security, education, creative finance, employment, energy and climate change, and/or other access issues. The Irish Impact organizing committee will select up to a half dozen early-stage social ventures to present a short multi-media presentation about their organization, mission, social impact, sustainability, and financial needs.

Previous winners include:

2014 First Place Winner – Crisp! Mobile Grocery

(Photo by Matt Cashore/University of Notre Dame)

Crisp! is an affordable mobile grocery service that delivers to all areas of Chicago. Food desert residents can conveniently purchase fresh, affordable groceries and household items from Crisp! Crisp! also provides health education materials, such as cooking instruction videos and recipe packages.  Crisp! is a for-profit social enterprise, owned by Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago.

2014 People’s Choice Winner – JIFFI-Jubilee Initiative for Financial Inclusion

(Photo by Matt Cashore/University of Notre Dame)

The Jubilee Initiative for Financial Inclusion (JIFFI) is a nonprofit community financial services provider founded by University of Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s students. They aim to replace predatory payday lending that perpetuates poverty in South Bend. JIFFI offers cash advances supplemented by helpful personal financial planning tools to help clients get ahead instead of falling behind.

2013 First Place Winner – Chapulin Mobile Transfers

Screen Shot 2015-09-16 at 12.50.01 PM

Chapulín helps U.S. Hispanics make money transfers conveniently and at a great price. They provide a low flat rate of $4.95 for up to $3,000, regardless of how a client pays and the country of destination. They also provide a great exchange rate, providing savings of up to 80% compared to the competition.

2013 People’s Choice Winner – Million Dollar Scholar

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Million Dollar Scholar aims to provide students the tools and training necessary to win scholarships. They show students where and how to apply for college scholarships, receive feedback on scholarship essays, create and prepare a résumé, and even how to have a successful interview with simulated interview sessions. Million Dollar Scholar has been featured on CNN, BET,  NBC, and TEDx.

2012 First Place Winner – CleanTurn


CleanTurn is for men and women who have had significant obstacles to employment in their past, by helping them to grasp responsibility and to work towards self-sufficiency. Their mission is to reduce the social costs associated with poverty, recidivism, substance abuse and chronic unemployment through an innovative and self-sustaining business focused on leveraging market opportunities in the service industry.

2012 People’s Choice Winner – EOS International

Screen Shot 2015-09-16 at 1.36.32 PMEOS International has developed a set of core technologies to help improve the quality of life for rural families by creating income opportunities, improving health, and protecting the environment. EOS empowers impoverished Nicaraguans by working with them as autonomous customers rather than charity recipients, and each beneficiary pays a share of the cost. Their team of engineers uses locally sourced materials to improve system designs that lower costs and improve efficiency for the average Nicaraguan. Each technology is tagged with GPS coordinates allowing EOS to revisit and analyze technologies long after the initial installation, insuring long-term success and constant improvement of their technologies.

Once again, this year’s conference will focus on impact investing, so don’t miss this opportunity to garner interest in your social enterprise! Register for the 2015 Irish Impact SE Conference and apply to the Zielsdorf Family Pitch Competition by Wednesday, September 30th! 

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