Startup X is an integral part of Creative Zone that helps visionary and innovative startups launch and succeed in their ventures.

This year Startup X has introduced 'Pitch It In A Minute' contest, where startups and entrepreneurs are invited to pitch their business idea to four successful business owners and investors.

How Does It Wrks

Share Your Pitch

Submit a 1 minute video of yourself explaining your business idea. Be concise with your answers. However, the more complete the information you provide, the better your chances of being selected and receiving valuable feedback. For example, if you had a prior exit or won a competition, tell us about it in the video.


The 10 best entries will be selected, and participants will be expected to confirm their participation 12 days before Demo Day. If no confirmation is received, a waitlisted participant will be selected.

Demo Day

The final 10 participants will be invited to the Demo Day at a designated venue, where they will present their idea to the panel. One participant will be chosen as the winner.

Meet The Judges


Lorenzo Jooris

CEO, Creative Zone

Lorenzo Jooris holds extensive and diverse experience in the Middle Eastern and South Asian business markets and retains an expert opinion on the regions' SMEs and startup culture. He was the founder of One World Communications, a full-fledged multi-media powerhouse advising governments around the world in branding and communication strategies. He also started LEADERS Middle East Magazine in the UAE and formulated 'Leaders without Borders', an initiative that promotes young social entrepreneurs' development. He is the author of "Recipes for a Better World" and an advisor to the James Michel Foundation.


Donna Benton

CEO, The Benton Group

Donna Benton is the epitome of female empowerment in the UAE.

Known for her positivity and determination, Donna is skilled at identifying great ideas and building business empires. Apart from her most successful venture- The Entertainer, Donna has since then opened Chloe's Beauty, Hair and Nails in 2013, and is an active partner in Dawson Sports, a UAE-based provider of sports equipment with exclusive distribution rights for Suunto sports watches in the GCC. She is also involved in some of the UAE's trendiest food and beverage concepts, has an extensive property rental portfolio, and several other businesses. She has been an advocate of entrepreneurism in the UAE in many public appearances, emphasising the country's tolerance and incredible support system to lead business ideas to success.


H.E. Dr Sara Al Madani

Serial Entrepreneur

Her Excellency, Dr Sara Al Madani, is a well-known entrepreneur in fashion, F&B, tech, and marketing. In 2014, she was selected by His Highness Sheikh D.r Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qassimi as a board member at Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, making her the youngest on the board. Al Madani runs three businesses in the UAE: an innovative abaya fashion house, a British restaurant and a creative consultancy. She is also a brand ambassador for Nivea and Natura Bissé in the Middle East and Mercedes Abu Dhabi – a networking organisation that addresses the challenges of balancing business and private life.

A recipient of multiple awards, Al Madani, was recently honoured with the title Ecosystem Influencer at the Enterprise Agility Awards 2016, organised by the magazine Entrepreneur Middle East, to inspire entrepreneurs and play a key role in raising Sharjah's profile.


Spencer Lodge

Founder, Make It Happen University - E-Learning Platform,

Having trained and coached countless people during his career, Spencer Lodge knows what it takes to make things happen. With over 23 years of experience in building businesses and training employees to achieve their full potential, Make It Happen was born out of Spencer's desire to share his success with people in the industry.

Whether you're an employee who wants to learn how to be a better salesman through our leadership programme, or a CEO who wants to cultivate a strong sales and leadership culture in the workplace, Make It Happen has the tools you'll need to help you on your way. Transform your sales team, redefine your success strategy and realise that you can achieve anything you set your mind to.

What´s Included

  • 1-year free trade licence provided
  • 1-year company setup advice and support provided by Creative Zone
  • 1-year office Space at My Office / Creative Zone
  • Free banking advise and support provided by CZ Concierge
  • 1-year free mentoring program with workshops, seminars and dedicated coach
  • 1-year free tax and accounting support provided by
  • Creative Zone Tax & Accounting
  • 1-year free legal advice 1-year free digital marketing and social media set up provided
  • Support in preparing your company for fund raising
  • Access to capital, investors & partners
  • 1-year HR Support & Recruitment

To participate , please fill the form below

Choosing a winner is completely upon the discretion of the judges. Creative Zone does not guarantee funding to any participants entering the contest.



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