World news story

Pitch at the Paras

Competition offering UK healthcare solutions companies the chance to pitch their products to business audience in Brazil during the Paralympics.

Pitch at the Paras

UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) Brazil, in partnership with the Innovation Forum, is organising a competition to select the 5 most innovative companies from the UK who offer healthcare related solutions to improve the lives of people with disabilities.

The selected winners will travel to Brazil during the Paralympics in Rio in September 2016 and attend an event at British House. There they will have the chance to pitch their products to a selected audience of potential business partners, investors and decision makers in the Brazilian healthcare market.

The visit will also allow them to explore business opportunities in Brazil. Moreover, the companies will take part in other activities, including tailored meetings with important business leaders. This will give them the chance to profile their business and products in Brazil during their 3 day stay in Rio.

How to take part in the competition

In order to take part in the competition, companies must submit a video up to 2 minutes in length. The video must contain:

  • a company presentation
  • a presentation of the product/technology (eg a physical prototype)
  • an explanation as to why their product can be considered innovative
  • an explanation as to how the product will improve the lives of people with disabilities
  • the importance of coming to Rio during the Paralympics

Any other information the company might find relevant in order to present themselves can also be included as long as the video does not exceed 2 minutes in length. Submissions should be presented before 23:59 on 14 July 2016 (BST). Companies can submit links for their videos in any general online video platform (including YouTube, Vimeo, Dropbox link etc.).

Access the application form to submit the video.

Criteria for participation:

  • company must be a startup or a Small and Medium size Enterprise (SME) company based in the UK
  • company cannot be a direct supplier of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) or UKTI in the UK or any other post overseas
  • product / technology must be health-related and directed to improving the quality of the lives of people with disabilities
  • company must be able to bring a prototype of the product to present and test in front of a live audience

Selection process

Selection will occur in 2 phases, being conducted by 2 different teams of experts in Brazil and the UK.

The first selection will be conducted by the Innovation Forum team, which will choose the 20 most promising companies between the 15th and the 17th of July.

After that, a jury of professionals specialised in healthcare at the FCO and UKTI posts in Brazil will choose the 5 winners, on the 18th and 19th of July.

Results will be announced on 20th of July, 16:00 (BST).

Criteria for selection:

  • is this a product that will improve the lives of people with disabilities?
  • does your product have potential to be commercialised?
  • is it user friendly?
  • is the innovation traceable and measurable?

Innovation will be evaluated considering how successful is the exploration of the product, service, process or technology. The innovation can be radical (new product or technology); an increment (an improvement on the product or technology); or social (considering its social impact).

It will be also taken into account the potential to win business in Brazil, considering the characteristics of the product and demand from the Brazilian market.


Selected companies will win a trip for one representative of each company to Rio de Janeiro in order to take part in the programme of activities developed by UKTI.

Costs covered:

  • flight tickets (economy) between London and Rio de Janeiro and return
  • accommodation for 3 days in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) at a hotel of UKTI’s choice (tourist category)
  • on-sight transportation while in Rio de Janeiro for the specific activities
  • meals (breakfast, lunch and dinners) and tickets for activities proposed in the schedule

Please notice the prize is for one representative from each selected winner company. Further costs not mentioned above must be covered by the company, including travel insurance and if more than one representative wishes to attend.

The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.

Selected participants

UKTI and/or Open Innovation forum will contact the winners directly informing them about the prize. Selected companies will have 48 hours to confirm their acceptance of the prize and provide all the information required. In case a company fails to meet these requirements, another company will be selected in their place.

It is mandatory for the company’s representatives to attend any event supported by UKTI throughout the length of their stay in Rio. It must be pointed out that they will be accompanied by representatives of the British government throughout all the activities.

By accepting the prize, participants automatically allow the use of their image by the British government in any communication piece, including online (websites and social medial) and printed media.

About the Innovation Forum

The Innovation Forum is a global grassroots network of over 10,000 innovators and scientists that seeks to build bridges between industry, academia and government. It is focused on the future and the evolution of deep technologies, which range from the nascent stage to those on the cusp of commercial application. It runs events across the world, an international leaders conference and an seed ventures accelerator.

Visit the website or email for more information.

About UKTI Brazil

UKTI is a UK government department working with businesses based in the United Kingdom. It works to ensure their success in international markets, and encourage the best overseas companies to look to the UK as their global partner of choice.

UKTI helps British companies of all sizes to grow their business through international trade by offering expert advice and practical support through a range of programmes. It also connects businesses to the world’s top commercial opportunities and drives targeted campaigns centred around them.

About British House

British House is the UK’s official residence at Rio 2016. It will be the place to celebrate Team GB’s performances and a showcase for the best of the UK and its capital, London, including business.

It is located in the centre of Rio de Janeiro at Parque Lage, adjacent to the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue and within the Copacabana cluster of the games.

As well as providing a base for Team GB’s athletes, British House will offer an innovative programme of cultural and business events. These will cover a variety of themes from investment and sport to music and the creative industries.

British House during the Paralympic Games

At the Rio 2016 Games, British House will be Paralympics GB’s home away from home and the main hub outside of the Paralympic village for the athletes and the staff team.

ParalympicsGB will host a number of events bringing guests from across the international Paralympic movement together at British House. It will also serve to host British media to meet athletes and other British guests. British House during the Paralympic Games is situated at the Shopping Metropolitano in the Barra area and only 2km to the Olympic park. It will promote GREAT Britain and London as global leaders across business and innovation, offering a captivating programme of sporting, cultural, educational and B2B events.


Contact if you require any further information about the competition.

Published 3 June 2016