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Global SUN Pitch Competition 2020

The Global SUN Pitch Competition brings together 21 innovative SMEs from national pitch competitions in Africa and Asia to pitch their nutrition solution to a panel of high-level judges and an audience of investors for a chance to win cash and technical assistance prizes.

The competition, which will take place as a virtual event on Thursday 30th July, is organised by the SUN Business Network.


The SUN Business Network will award the following prizes to the overall winner, first and second runners up based on their response to the ‘Rethinking Nutrition Innovations’ theme and the SUN Pitch Competition Eligibility & Selection Criteria. 

1st Prize: USD$ 20,000 2nd Prize: USD$ 10,000

3rd Prize: USD$ 7,000

The following cash and technical assistance prizes have been generously contributed by sponsors.

  • GAIN Food Technology Innovation Prize

  • GAIN will award a cash prize of USD $ 10,000 to the company that provides the most innovative food solution that is nutritious, affordable, safe, and tasty.

  • Cargill Innovation to Enable Access to Good Nutrition Prize

  • Cargill will award a cash prize of USD $ 10,000 to the company that improves accessibility to healthier foods either through greater market access, innovative reformulation, collaborative partnership, consumer education, or new delivery channels.

  • DSM “3A Nutrition” Prize

  • DSM will award a cash prize of USD $ 10,000 to the company that offers 3A nutrition. DSM is looking for the company that makes delicious nutritious food affordable, widely accessible, and aspirational.

  • AGREA Mentorship Prize

  • AGREA will award a mentorship package to an outstanding entrepreneur with an exciting and promising investment proposition. Founder and CEO of AGREA, Cherrie Atilano, will provide 1:1 mentorship on strategic business development and guidance towards seeking further investment.

  • BoPInc Digitalisation Prize

  • BoP Innovation Center will award a mentorship package to the overall winner of the competition, with a focus on identifying opportunities for the award recipient to digitalise their business.

Selection Criteria

  1. INNOVATION: The ability of the proposed innovative solution to effectively address one of the competition challenges. SBN defines “Innovation” as a new product, service or business model and/or an existing product, service or business model being introduced in an environment where it has not been implemented before.

  2. NUTRITION IMPACT: The ability of the innovative solution to make a significant contribution towards addressing nutrient gaps in one of the following priority target populations/consumers: (i) pregnant and lactating women/ women of reproductive age; (ii) infants and young children (> 6 months); (iii) adolescents (pre-child bearing age); school children; (iv) low-income populations; (v) remote populations.

  3. SOCIO-ECONOMIC IMPACT: The extent to which the proposed innovative solution will generate broader socio-economic improvements, e.g. job creation.

  4. COMMERCIAL VIABILITY: The capacity of the company (financial, human capital, systems, infrastructure etc.) to profitably develop or adopt the proposed innovative solution.

  5. SCALE: The innovative solution demonstrates a clear pathway to sustainably scale the company’s operations and nutritional impact in the immediate community, region or country.

  6. AFFORDABILITY: The ability of the innovative solution to be cost-effectively adopted by the business to ensure the affordability of nutritious foods to end consumers.

  7. ADAPTABILITY: The extent to which the innovative solution is fit for low-resource consumers.


The SUN Pitch Competition is looking to invite innovative SMEs that meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • The company is a for-profit company. The company may partner with other organisations, including non-governmental and governmental organisations; however, the lead applicant and implementer of the business concept must be a commercial company/business. Associations and cooperatives are also eligible to apply if they are functioning as businesses.

  • The company is a legally registered entity in one of the following countries; Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Burundi, Cambodia, Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Kenya, Lao PDR, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Myanmar, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Senegal, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Vietnam or Zambia. The company must be able to submit proof of registration. The company must have its main operations in the country is it legally registered in.

  • The company produces and/or distributes nutritious products and/or services for local markets and for human consumption as part of its main business model in the following food value chains: fruits, vegetables & pulses; quality proteins (eggs, dairy, poultry, fish); alternative proteins (example insects); fortified staples and fortified blended foods; nuts and seeds; lean red meat; refined cereals and grains.

  • Please note that an application pitching a sole focus on the production and/or distribution of the following products will be disqualified:

  • Breastmilk substitutes

  • Processed meats (sausages, smoked meats, salted fish etc)

  • Sugar-sweetened & alcoholic beverages

  • Hydrogenated oils

  • Products high in salt, sugar and saturated fat (>30% daily recommended intake)

  • Focus on the following target populations are automatically excluded (1) products exclusively targeting high-income populations and (2) export markets in developed countries

  • The company is a financially viable business (i.e. the business model counts on sales revenues to cover all of the company’s expenses).

  • The company is an SME in a post-revenue stage that has generated revenues and/or turnover of less than USD 3 million.

  • The company is presenting an investment proposal that aims to develop or adopt technological solutions that address one of the competition challenges.

  • The company must adhere to the SUN Business Network Principles of Engagement.

  • The company must not have previously competed in the SUN Pitch Competition Regional Final which took place at the Nutrition Africa Investor Forum in October 2018.





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