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Chilean startups: Are you ready for MIT Media Lab’s Aji Challenge?

Startups, developers, researchers and inventors in Chile, Encuentros is looking for you!  Applications for the Aji Challenge, sponsored by MIT Media Lab are now open. Apply before 31 March 2013 to qualify for a chance to win an all-expense paid trip to USA to pitch your idea.

MIT Media Lab recently kicked off the ‘Ají Challenge’ innovation and entrepreneurship contest, an initiative organized by ‘Encuentros 2013’ who reunites hundreds of professionals, professors, researchers and Chilean entrepreneurs abroad every year.

Who can participate?

Chileans and non-Chileans. Doctors and non-doctors. Entrepreneurs and wanna be entrepreneurs. ‘Ají Challenge’ is a great opportunity to convert your work or idea into a business plan. You just need an innovative idea in order to participate.

How to apply?

Just upload a video of maximum 3 minutes to the ‘Ají Challenge’ portal. You can send in every type of video: animation, performance or yourself speaking in front of the camera. The video should explain the idea, show why you think it has a potential and finally why you or your team are qualified for development. It may be in English or in Spanish.


At both selection days (the first one on April 15 and the second one on May 1st) the organization committee will make the evaluation based on the following criteria:

  • Originality of the idea: 40%
  • Potential for development: 30%
  • Clearness of presentation: 20%
  • Teamwork: 10%

Only 3 teams will reach the finals and will get the opportunity to present their project at the MIT Media Lab at ‘Encuentros 2013’! The organization will pay for journey and stay.


After April 15: Workshop for semi finalists about business models with the aim of converting your idea in a business plan

After 1st of May: Workshop ‘improve your pitch’ for the 3 finalists with the aim of optimizing your presentation for ‘Encuentro 2013’.


At the finals of ‘Encuentro 2013’ at MIT, Boston:

  • Every team will have 3 minutes to present their video
  • 1 minute to add information
  • 5 minutes of Q & A and feedback from the jury

In addition, the audience will select their winner through the “Encuentros dollars” investments. There will be a special prize for the team that raises the most dollars.


(Hurry, applications close March 31st 2013!)