About Program

IBA Center for Entrepreneurial Development (CED) and Oxfam have partnered to strengthen the entrepreneurial ecosystem of Pakistan through Startups Competitions Program. Start-ups Competitions Program will be held in 2 rural (Jamshoro & Layyah) and 3 urban (Karachi, Islamabad & Lahore) cities of Pakistan. This program aims to improve economic and social strengths of young men and women particularly living in rural climate-change affected areas. IBA CED will provide necessary support to the youth in capacity building in terms of entrepreneurial careers, incubation support, mentoring & handholding, and access to financial & other significant resources required to build a sustainable business venture.

Overall Target Audience of the Program


IBA CED will conduct Eight start-up competitions as per below segregation (theme-based, SDG, gender, agri-business focused and linking rural to urban business ideas):

Benefits of the Program

A) Capacity Building/Training

IBA CED will conduct the training program for the selected ideas/startups. This training is based on the globally recognized E+ Model of Entrepreneurship. Following areas will be covered in training program:

B) Seed Money (Cash Prizes)

IBA CED will provide the Cash Prizes Seed Money for Top Three (03) Ideas from each competition. The prizes will be decided by the Independent Panel of Judges, comprised by IBA in consultation and participation from OXFAM. The prizes will be based on overall performance of the startup in competition. There will be a total of 24 Cash Prizes in all of the Eight competitions:

Mentorship and Incubation Support

The 24 winners from Eight Startup Competitions will be provided a host of Mentorship and Incubation Support Services from IBA CED. The National and International Business Leaders will provide mentoring to these Startups in all five cities. IBA CED will provide Incubation Support for all the winners of Startup Competitions in their respective cities.

Startups Themes for Competitions

The Urban and Rural Themes include the following business opportunities for startups based on SDGs:

Startups Themes for Competitions: Market Challenge focusing on Pandemics like COVID 19
Education: Education Technology focusing on Global and Professional Learning
Gender Equality: Innovative Business Ideas for Female-owned/Female-led Enterprises
Civic services: Market-Based Solutions and Products for Safe and Affordable Civic Services and Products
Renewable Energy: Innovative Ideas for Renewable Energy Products and Services
IT: Innovative Ideas in Information and Communication Technology, Blockchain, Fintech, Robotics etc.
Social Entrepreneurship: Innovative Social Entrepreneurship Ideas for inclusion of marginalized communities, People with disabilities, Transgender community etc.
Climate Change: Innovative Ideas to tackle Climate Change challenges
Agriculture: Innovative Ideas for Agri-Business opportunities (post-harvest processing, packaging etc.)
Innovative Ideas for Direct-to-Consumer Agriculture Products Innovative Ideas for improvement in efficiency of Water utilization for agricultural usage
Ideas for development of innovative on-farm agriculture implements, tools, fertilizers, pest-management processes/products etc.
Handicrafts: Ideas for development and promotion of handicrafts from rural areas (supply chain, marketing, sales, e-commerce etc.)
Marine related: Ideas for Innovative Aquaculture Practices (Bio-floc Fish Farming and Shrimp Farming etc.)
Livestock: Ideas for innovative development in Livestock sector
Other: Other innovative ideas pertaining to any business sector that can be successful and potential for growth in that particular geographical area

Process of Startups Competitions Program:
This program is divided into 4 stages. Following are the details of each stage.

Stage-1: Support youth in Ideation Phase/Startup Academy
We will shortlist around 200 startups (from 5 cities i.e. Karachi, Jamshoro, Lahore, Islamabad, and Layyah) which will be facilitated through the Start-up Academy in developing an Entrepreneurial mindset to pursue opportunities for a viable business growth. Our IBA faculty along with IBA Entrepreneurship Faculty Fellows from all over Pakistan (around 200 faculty members from 50+ universities have been trained by IBA CED) will play a pivotal role in conducting these sessions for youth.
This phase will focus on developing the Life Skills Training, Elevator Pitch Training and Business Model Development:

Stage-2: Start-up Support Program
The Start-up Support Program will help entrepreneurs from the MVP (Minimum Viable Product) stage to the business launch/growth phase, helping them to build sustainable businesses with high growth potential. Out of 200+ startups/ideas, the potential 100+ startups/ideas from these 5 cities will be shortlisted for stage-2. The Program will develop entrepreneurship and leadership skills, to promote a culture of entrepreneurship, and to create a strong startup ecosystemm
m. The Program will be dedicated to empowering the entrepreneurial community and building networks that drive collaboration and strengthen entrepreneurship in Pakistan and fostering entrepreneurship, leadership development, building thriving communities, and achieving sustainable economic growth. It will offer a platform that provides action-based learning programs, resources, and networks for entrepreneurs. The Startup Support Program will be providing extensive, customized training workshops to provisionally selected 100+ business ideas in the following areas:

Stage-3: Pitching of Selected Ideas
After the conclusion of Startup Support Program, IBA CED will conduct the Eight Mega Events for Pitching of Ideas at Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Jamshoro and Layyah.
In case of queries, please do not hesitate to contact your regional coordinators for assistance:

Regional Coordinators


Email Address

Phone No

Mohammad Talha 

Lahore, Islamabad, Layyah


Ext 2704

Rao Israr Ahmed

Karachi, Jamshoro


Ext 2664

For more information and institutional partnerships, please contact the following persons:

Lead Coordinators

Email Address

Phone No

Azad Ahmed
(For Karachi and Jamshoro)


Ext 2702

Mian Abdullah Mustafa
(For Lahore, Islamabad and Layyah)



IBA - Leadership & Ideas for Tomorrow