Get ready to apply now
Please make sure you are eligible to enter by reviewing the full eligibility criteria and the terms and conditions and then, if you are eligible, continue below.
I or all members of my group are over 18.
My idea or enterprise is within or in support of the creative industries and is not a product that still requires significant technological Research & Development.
I aim to create or already am creating positive social impact through my enterprise.
I own a material share in the business, and am responsible or share responsibility for its direction and leadership.
I am legally resident in the UK until at least June 29, 2024.
If applying as a group, we will all be legally resident in the UK until at least June 29, 2024.
DBACE applications will close at midnight on Mar 31, 2023.
Remember, on the Resources page we have lots of advice to help you submit your application including a glossary of business vocabulary and concepts.
Frequently asked questions
Q: How do I apply?
A: You can apply by completing the application form online.
Q: Can I send in my application by post?
A: Applications will only be accepted through the online process.
Q: Can I submit more than one application?
A: No, unfortunately we can only accept one application per applicant.
Q: I can’t answer all the questions?
A: As applicants will be coming from a range of starting points, we understand that some respondents will be further ahead than others in being able to answer some of the questions. Don’t worry, just fill in as much as you can according to what is relevant and where you are at with your creative enterprise.
Q: I have a question about the application, who can I speak to?
A: Contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Please also see the listings of information sessions which include webinars and face-to-face meetings.
Q: What sort of supporting materials should be submitted?
A: In the online application, we ask for an elevator video pitch where you get to tell us about yourself and your idea or enterprise. The video should be between 30-60 seconds and is a brief persuasive speech or presentation that is used to spark interest in you and your idea. We also request an image which we can post when announcing shortlisters.
Q: Are my ideas kept confidential?
A: We don’t share full details of your application publicly. Your full application will only be seen by the judging panel, MeWe360 team and staff at Deutsche Bank. However, we may share more widely (e.g. on our website), a summary of the description of your idea/enterprise as well as the image and pitch video you submit online. If there is any information in your application which you are particularly concerned about please advise our team via email: email@example.com
Q: Will it work against me if I haven’t actually started running my business as opposed to someone who’s been running their business for a while?
A: No, not at all. We are interested in finding high potential rather than the finished product. As long as you and your idea are compelling, and we believe that DBACE can add genuine value to the development of your enterprise, it doesn’t matter whether you are at ideas stage or more established.
Q: Will I get an acknowledgement of receipt?
A: Yes, an email will be sent to the address you registered.
Q: I submitted my entry online. How can I verify/confirm what I have entered?
A: The responses you have submitted will be sent to you with the confirmation email.
Q: When will shortlisted applicants/winners be notified /announced?
– Shortlisted applicants from the first round (online application form stage) will be notified by May 19, 2023
– Finalists selected during the second round (live pitch presentations) will be notified by June 16, 2023
– Winners will be announced on July 6, 2023
Q: Will I get feedback?
A: Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee individual feedback to applicants at any stage. Where possible and relevant (i.e. if common themes for constructive comment emerge), we will collate and share general feedback from the panels at all stages of judging. There are opportunities throughout the application window to register for 1-2-1 applicant support sessions where you can receive feedback on your application. See our Events page for more information.
Q: Can you tell me more about the pitching events?
A: The heats pitch events will take place in London. You will be asked to present a short pitch presentation (up to 10 minutes) to a judging panel on a date between June 12-16, 2023. Confirmed dates and venue as well as guidance will be given in May to those shortlisted. There will also be the opportunity to attend a pitching masterclass in May as well as practice and feedback sessions between May 30 – June 2, 2023 to help you prepare. The pitching masterclass and practice sessions will take place online. Reasonable travel expenses from outside of London will be paid to attend the heats pitch.
We will be asking the finalists to present their pitch again, this time to the finals judging panel on June 20, 2023 in central London. On the same date the winners will be announced at the award event, also taking place in London on July 6 2023. Reasonable travel expenses to attend the finals pitch and award event will be paid for applicants coming from outside of London.
Q: If a group is shortlisted, is it okay if only the lead applicant attends the pitching day?
A: Yes. Although the judges like to meet the whole team to understand the dynamics of the project, if it’s not possible, think of a fun and creative way to include the personalities/credentials of the rest of your team. Your team are fundamental to the strength of your business/project plan and idea, so make sure you mention them.
Q: Is this competition run every year?
A: The DBACE competition has been operating for 30 years, since 1993. The competition took a rest in 2018, to review its aims and objectives. It was relaunched in January 2019.
Q: My business has won another competition, can I apply with a business idea that has already won an award?
Q: Are group applications allowed?
A: Yes. Group businesses can apply. The majority of the group applying must fulfill the eligibility criteria.
Q: I live abroad and/or my project will take place overseas. Can I still apply?
A: We welcome business ideas that will take place abroad. However, you can only apply if throughout the process up until June 2024, you are legally resident in the UK.
Q: How does DBACE define the creative industries?
A: DBACE welcomes applications from the following sectors – advertising, architecture, art and antiques, crafts, design, fashion, film, gaming, immersive technology, music, performing and visual arts, and publishing. We are also keen to hear from applicants with software related enterprises that support the creative disciplines mentioned above.
Please note, if considerable Research & Development is needed to secure a patent or to move forward with your enterprise idea, we would rather you consider re-applying further down the line, once that R&D process has sufficiently developed.
Q: What is positive social impact?
A: Positive social impact refers to a significant, positive change that addresses a social challenge. DBACE is aimed at ambitious young people with ideas that will improve the lives of others and the communities we live in.
Below are examples of creative organisations that have addressed a social, cultural or environmental issue with their work (not all UK based). The examples are wide ranging from services to products across sectors as this reflects the breadth of social impact that can be created and the diversity of enterprises that could apply.
The Diversity School Initiative