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Synbio Powerhouse (“Synbio Powerhouse”), is an innovation ecosystem for synthetic biology in Finland operated by VTT TECHNICAL RESEARCH CENTRE OF FINLAND LTD (Business ID FI26473754) with post address at P.O. Box 1000, FI-02044 VTT, Finland. Synbio Powerhouse provides opportunities for partnering, matchmaking, education, mentoring, collaboration and co-creation. Synbio Powerhouse also organizes innovation challenges (“Challenge”) such as Synbio Reverse Pitch (as specified below). Any student or graduate student in Finland with legal capacity can apply for these Challenges as part of a team (“Team”) or as a solo contestant (“Contestant”).



Synbio Reverse Pitch is a science-based competition and idea accelerator that aims to discover solutions to challenges pitched by the participating companies. 

Synbio Reverse Pitch promotes synthetic biology in problem solving.

Synbio Reverse Pitch is created, implemented and organized by Synbio Powerhouse (hereafter “Organizer”). In 2019, the partner companies in Synbio Reverse Pitch are St1 Oy, Kemira Oyj, Ikea Finland Oy and Neste Finland Oyj (“Partner Company”). Further, the following Finnish universities participate in Synbio Reverse Pitch: Aalto University, University of Helsinki, University of Eastern Finland, University of Jyväskylä, University of Oulu, University of the Arts Helsinki, University of Turku, University of Tampere, Åbo Akademi University (“Partner University”) (hereinafter the Partner Companies and the Partner Universities are jointly referred as the “Synbio Reverse Pitch Partners”).



Synbio Powerhouse invites selected company partners to present their challenges in March 20th for the Synbio Reverse Pitch. The companies will participate in the workshop held in April 25th(voluntary) and name a jury member for the finalsheld in May 27th (mandatory).

Synbio Powerhouse invites students to participate in Synbio Reverse Pitch.

Established Teams can register for Synbio Reverse Pitch or a Team can be assembled later when the competition progresses towards the kick-off event.

A prerequisite for the participation in Synbio Reverse Pitch is that the team and every team member fully accepts these Rules.



Synbio Reverse Pitch call for applications will open in February 12th, 2019 and the competition will terminate with the announcement of the winner(s) in May 2019. The competition will proceed as follows:


February 28th

Deadline for company challenges.


March 1st

The challenges are published and posted to all registered Teams and Contestants.


March 20th, 16:00-18:00 - Design Factory Stage

Reverse-pitch of four (4) major companies at Design Factory. Teams and Contestants will have the opportunity to ask questions from R&D scientists and  mentors of the Partner Universities.


April 25th, 16:00 - 19:00 - Design Factory Studio

Workshop and personal mentoring for the competitors. Representatives of the Partner Companies, and Partner University professors and researchers will help the Teams and Contestants with their pitches.


27th May, 16:00-18:00 - Design Factory Stage

Synbio Reverse Pitch Finals - The jury will select the winners for each challenge and the winner for the entire competition.


The Organizer reserves the right to reject the registration and participation of a Contestant or a Team if it finds that the activities of the Contestant, Team or its members or their competition entry are in breach of these Rules.The Team’s contact person will receive a notification of the approval or rejection of the registration and a request to provide supplementary information, if necessary.



Synbio Reverse Pitch aims to discover innovative solutions using synthetic biology. Competition entries may include ideas, inventions, concepts, research projects, business ideas, initiatives or new research questions. The assessment criteria in in the finals will focus on how novel, creative, solution-focused, science-driven and impactful the competition entries are.The jury for the final round selects the finalists and winner(s). The jury bases its decision on the ranking of the competition entries according to the assessment criteria listed above. The jury members for the qualifying and final rounds will be announced on Synbio Reverse Pitch website.

The Organizer reserves the right not to declare a winner if the jury finds that none of the competition entries submitted by the participating teams fulfils the assessment criteria. The jury’s decision is not subject to appeal.



Any personal data of the Contestants or members of the Teams are processed by Organizer in accordance with the Privacy Policy and the applicable privacy laws and regulations, including the General Data Protection Regulation EU 2016/679 (“GDPR”) and Finnish Personal Data Act.


During and after the competition, the Organizer and Synbio Reverse Pitch Partners have the right to publish and communicate, on their external and internal websites and other internal and external communication channels, the names of the Contestants, Teams, and their members as well as descriptions of the competition entries. For this purpose, each Contestant and Team member hereby grants the aforementioned the right to use the name and pictures of the Contestant, Team and the Team members in, among other things, press releases, marketing material, articles, and videos. The Contestant and the Team members understand that the competition entries will be presented to the jury, the other participating Teams and various third parties in different events arranged during the competition.

By participating in the competition, each Contestant and Team member agrees that certain personal data is processed by the Organizer and its collaborators in accordance with the Privacy Policy which can be accessed through the above link and in the competition website.

The Organizer may disqualify a Contestant or a Team that does not observe the Rules or follow the instructions provided or submits deficient or incorrect information to the Organizer. Also, the Organizer has the right to disqualify a Contestant or a Team if it finds that the Contestant or a Team or its member(s) violate Finnish law or breach applicable ethical guidelines and practices, such as the ethical guidelines of the Finnish National Board on Research Integrity. The Organizer is not obligated to give detailed grounds for the disqualification of a Contestant or a Team. The disqualification shall be notified in writing to the Contestant or the Team’s contact person. The Contestant’s or the Team’s participation in the competition terminates immediately when the disqualification notification has been sent. After the disqualification, the submitted written material relevant to the competition entry will be returned to the Contestant or the Team’s contact person. The Organizer shall not exploit a disqualified competition entry.

A Contestant or a Team may at any time withdraw from the competition by notifying the Organizer thereof. The Organizer retains the right to amend these Rules during the competition. Any amendments to the rules will be announced, and the revised rules will be published on the competition website. Any amendment to the Rules will enter into force at the time of their publishing.



Ownership and title to all results, data, information, inventions and material developed with funds from the competition, and any intellectual property rights associated or pertaining thereto anywhere in the world (hereinafter “Results”) shall belong to the person who created it, if not otherwise agreed in an employment agreement or otherwise.

Each Contestant and Team shall in all of their activities during and after the competition, to the extent related to the competition or the Results, name Synbio Reverse Pitch and its contribution to the Contestant, Team, and any Results, by e.g. affixing the competition’s name on presentation material and possible webpage.

The Contestant, Team, and each Team member represents and warrants that the competition entry: (i) is the Contestant’s or the Team’s (or their organization’s) original product or licensed to the Contestant or the Team, (ii) is solely owned by the Contestant or the Team (or their organization) with no other person or entity having any rights or interest in it, (iii) does not include trade secrets or other confidential information which would prevent their use and evalutation in accordance with these Rules, and (iv) does not violate any rights of a third party, including but not limited to copyright, trademark, patent, contract, and/or privacy rights, of any other person or entity. The Contestant or the Team shall without delay notify the Organizer if it becomes aware of a third party claim related the Results, including claims related to as actual or potential breach of third party intellectual property rights.



The Contestant or Team represents and warrants: 1) that it complies with all applicable laws, regulations and ethical guidelines applicable to their work in the competition and that they have obtained all necessary permissions and ethical approvals applicable to the work before the commencement of any such work.



Unless otherwise provided in mandatory laws and regulations, the Organizer and each Synbio Reverse Pitch Partner shall have no liability whatsoever for the Contestant, Team, or a Team member for any damage, claim or liability arising out of or in connection with the competition, these Rules, or any potential competition prize made available to the Contestant or the Team. Liability for any indirect, consequential or punitive damages are expressly excluded.

The Contestant or the Team shall be solely liable for the use of any competition material, or potential competition prize, and any damage, claim or liability arising out of or in connection with the Contestant’s or Team’s actions or inactions.



This competition shall be governed by the laws of Finland, excluding its choice of law provisions. Decisions by the Organizer or the jury are not subject to an appeal. Without affecting the generality of the aforementioned, any dispute, controversy or claim arising out of or in connection with the competition or these Rules, or the breach, termination or invalidity thereof, shall be settled by the District Court of Helsinki, as the first instance. Nothing in these Rules shall limit the right to seek temporary injunctive relief in any applicable competent court of law.

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