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Do you have what it takes to be a Startup Battlefield champion? All you need is a killer pitch, an MVP, nerves of steel and the drive and determination to take on all comers to claim the coveted Disrupt Cup.

If you fit the description, apply to compete in Startup Battlefield at TC Disrupt 2021 on September 21-23.

Top early-stage startups from around the world — from any country and industry — will compete for a shot at $100,000 in equity-free prize money. That’s a huge bottom-line boost, and it also comes with global exposure, massive media attention and invaluable investor interest. Oh, and let’s not forget the bragging rights associated with winning the Disrupt Cup.

Here’s a quick run-down on how it all works. First and foremost: applying to and participating in Startup Battlefield is free — no fees, no equity cut. The TechCrunch editorial team reviews all applications and will choose roughly 25 stand-out startups to participate in tech’s top pitch competition.

Competing founders receive several weeks of intense training with the Startup Battlefield team — again at no cost. Your presentation skills, pitch and business models will be honed and burnished to perfection. You’ll be more than ready to virtually step onto the tech world’s most famous stage.

You’ll face a panel of judges consisting of leading VCs and have six minutes to pitch and demo. The judges will then put you through your paces with a Q&A. If you make the first cut, you’ll repeat the experience in round two with a fresh set of judges. In round three — a.k.a. the finals — another set of judges will hear the pitches and then declare the Startup Battlefield champion.

If you’re wondering how Startup Battlefield plays out as a virtual competition, here’s a perspective that Rachael Wilcox, a creative producer at Volvo Cars, shared with us after watching last year’s competition.

“The Startup Battlefield translated easily to the virtual format. You could see the excitement, enthusiasm and possibility of the young founders, and I loved that. You could also ask questions through the chat feature, and you don’t always have time for questions at a live event.”

Here’s another important aspect of competing in Startup Battlefield. Every team receives a VIP experience at Disrupt. What’s that look like? Global exposure to for starters — to journalists hungry to cover game-changing startups and VCs eager to expand their portfolios with top talent.

Then there’s free exhibition space on the virtual show floor, access to the CrunchMatch networking platform, complimentary tickets to future TC events and a free subscription to Extra Crunch. You’ll also receive invitations to private events — like the Startup Battlefield reception with members of the Startup Battlefield alumni community.

That’s an impressive group of 922 companies — including Vurb, Dropbox, Mint, Yammer and many others that have collectively raised $9.5 billion and generated 117 exits. It’s rarified territory and a prime networking opportunity.

TC Disrupt 2021 takes place September 21-23, and there are just two questions you need to ask yourself. Are you ready? Do you have what it takes? Alrighty then — apply to Startup Battlefield and prepare to take your startup to a new level of success. We can wait to see you bring the heat!

Is your company interested in sponsoring or exhibiting at Disrupt 2021? Contact our sponsorship sales team by filling out this form.

This post was first published on: TechCrunch