$1M Moonshot Competition

We’re navigating a time of vast global challenges: a warming climate, a chaotic geopolitical environment, labor shortages, a healthcare crisis, and more.

Amidst all this turmoil, we remain hopeful – because we believe the solutions to these problems are forming right now inside research labs, MBA programs and undergraduate dorm rooms.

Yet, funding options remain bleak.

Grant programs are broken, slow, cumbersome and risk-averse. Investors are often gun-shy, unwilling to make a bet on a big idea before a founder is ready to graduate, drop out or spin-out.

We believe it’s never too early to start building around a moonshot idea.

The $1M Moonshot Competition invites students, graduate students, postdocs, faculty and alumni of MIT to apply to win up to $1M in funding for your startup.

Our goal with this program is to put founders solving the world’s most challenging problems on the fast-track to success. To move fast and break things, you need capital; we aim to provide the financial fuel for big ideas.

The competition will award two investments – $1M and $250K – each in the form of an uncapped SAFE.

We welcome all startups across the spectrum of software, hardware, AI, robotics, climate, biotech, and more to apply. Still in school or working on research in a lab? No problem. We will happily meet you where you are with the support you need to get started.

$1M Moonshot Timeline

  • March 15th: Deadline to Apply
  • April 1st: Semi-Finalists Notified
  • April 2nd – 9th: Semi-Finalists Meet with Pillar VC
  • April 11th: Winners Announced

In advance of the application deadline, we’re also hosting two opportunities to learn more and connect with the Pillar VC team: 

We’ve backed moonshot ideas that emerged out of MIT including Asimov, PillPack, Jellyfish, Neural Magic, Algorand and more. Is yours next?

Learn more and access the application at moonshot.pillar.vc.

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