In pursuit of transparency and fairness to all applicants, we have outlined our rules for the startup accelerator competition. We kindly request that all competitors read and abide by these rules for the duration of the competition.


1. A startup founder or group of founders and cofounders, and/or teammates who collectively represent a startup, who apply to a CodeLaunch event, will collectively be referred to as a “Competitor”, for the purposes of these rules.

2. You must treat all hackathon team members, competitors, judges, coaches, volunteers, and other people affiliated with or attending CodeLaunch, with respect and courtesy at all times.

3. All content of a CodeLaunch application must be factual.

4. Competitor teams must follow CodeLaunch social media and stay up to date on current deadlines and dates relevant to each event, which can and often do change during an event cycle.

5. Applications that do not include a PDF or PowerPoint deck file, and/or do not include an additional set of Mock-Ups or Wireframes attached, may be disqualified.

6. CodeLaunch is best suited for startups that need progress on their technical product to accelerate and capture investments, or startups that need PR and an event around which to catalyze investors and close a “round”. If your startup already has a product and has closed a Series A priced-equity round, then you are probably too far along to compete fairly in the spirit of CodeLaunch. If you are too far along but still could use some PR and support, we would be happy to offer you a complimentary exhibit space while such space lasts, at any one event. If you are “pivoting” your product and/or execution strategy, we may still consider your participation to be fair and allow you to compete but the discretion to allow that is ours alone.

7. Although CodeLaunch costs nothing to apply and CodeLaunch does not require founders to give up equity, we do require you to travel to our event if you become a finalist, at your own cost for travel. Even if you are an international applicant. Please do not apply if you already know this is an impossibility.

8. Competitors may apply to consecutive events or re-apply to future events if they did not advance as a finalist in any one event. However, once a Competitor has become a finalist, that Competitor is no longer eligible to apply to future CodeLaunch events on behalf of the same startup brand or concept.

9. Professional hackathon teams are limited to 4 people with hands-in-code at a time during the two-day hackathon session. However, Competitors may embed their own technical team members into their assigned hackathon team, in the event they become a finalist.

10. A Competitor that becomes a semi-finalist or finalist will be expected to promote the event and make a good faith effort to share out discount codes to help elevate attendance and community engagement.

11. CodeLaunch pitches are always 4 minutes and 8 slides. Rehearse your pitch and know it lasts only 4 minutes. Small overruns are okay during pitch meetings and practice but should be tight on stage. Product demos, follow the pitch, they are 30 seconds, have no sound, and are narrated live by the founder on stage.

12. Judges may be asked to give out a ‘judges choice’ award at any one event, but they do not determine the “Champion”. All of the attendees present may vote exactly once, which determines the “Champion” alone. CodeLaunch event production has no role in determining the winner.

13. CodeLaunch production staff will determine the run-of-show and order of pitches. Sometimes we leverage digital marketing competition amongst the finalists to help us decide the order in the first round.

14. Details about the steps in the curation process can be found here.

15. Additional answers to commonly asked questions can be found here.

16. Employees of or contractors for Improving are not eligible to compete as founders in any CodeLaunch event.

17. The founder or at least one co-founder must be 21 years of age.


CodeLaunch is the premier startup accelerator in North America. From unforgettable and electric competitions to hands-on product development and business support, we are empowering startups across the world. If you have a technology-based venture, be sure to apply to CodeLaunch today or check out some of our startup resources below.


Next Open Application Window: CODELAUNCH MEXICO