2019 Shark Tank of Wellness FAQ’s

What is the “Shark Tank of Wellness”?

The “Shark Tank of Wellness” competition is a global challenge where students submit their innovative ideas for the wellness industry for a chance to win prize money and a trip to the annual Global Wellness Summit. From the submissions received, three students will be chosen as finalists to present their ideas at the Global Wellness Summit. During the event, the finalists will present their ideas on stage in front of the attending delegates and the judging panel, or “Wellness Sharks.” The judges then deliberate and, later in the day, award the prize money; first place receives USD $5,000, second place $3,000, and third place $2,000.

Who are the “Wellness Sharks”?

The “Wellness Sharks” are the judges of the “Shark Tank of Wellness” competition. The “Wellness Sharks” will decide the top three finalists. They will be on stage with the top three finalists, asking them questions about their ideas, and will award the first, second and third place prizes following deliberation. All “Wellness Sharks” are leading experts in the wellness industry and are Summit sponsors.

What is the application process?

First, anyone interested in participating in the competition must register online, click here. Only registered students will receive the link to the Concept Submission Form once they register. To complete the application process, each individual or team must complete the Concept Submission Form and provide a link to their video submission within that form no later than May 15, 2019. Videos must be submitted by providing a public link to the video within the Concept Submission Form; no downloads or files will be accepted.

What do students have to submit?

Students must first register for the competition by completing the Entry Form. Please click here to register.

Students must submit a one- to two-minute video presentation describing their idea, why it could positively impact the wellness industry, and how it could become a viable business. The video must be submitted as a link and be hosted on a third-party platform, such as YouTube, Vimeo or Dailymotion. Downloads and video files will not be accepted. The video must contain only original work and not be subject to any copyright restrictions. All entries become the property of the Global Wellness Summit, which retains the right to publish the entries in all media formats, including but not limited to print, digital and broadcast. Entry creators and the GWS will be acknowledged in all published versions.

Student must also complete a Concept Submission Form. This form will provide the judges with additional information about the idea, including target markets, competitors, consumer demand, barriers to entry, and how their idea differs from current products/services in the industry. A link to this form will be provided in the email students receive when they register for the competition.

How do students register for the competition?

Students must complete the Entry Form to register for the competition. Contestants will receive regular updates via email regarding the competition. Please click here to register.

Is there a cost to participate in the Shark Tank of Wellness?

No. There is no entry fee for the “Shark Tank of Wellness” competition.

What is a “wellness idea”?

The “Shark Tank of Wellness” competition accepts viable business ideas for any segment of the wellness industry. This includes architecture/design, beauty, education, fitness, hospitality, investment, medicine, nutrition, real estate, spa, technology, travel, tourism and more. Projects do not have to be in one of the listed segments, but students must be able to show how their idea relates to the global wellness industry. We recommend looking at the Summit Global Wellness Trends or research from the Global Wellness Institute if students are unsure of wellness industry segments or are seeking resources to support how their innovation connects to the wellness industry. The wellness industry is currently valued at over $4.2 trillion, thus providing ample opportunity for innovative ideas!

Who is eligible to participate?

The competition is open to students over the age of 18 from anywhere in the world. Contestants must be an undergraduate student (working toward a one- or two-year diploma, a four-year Bachelor’s degree or a Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualification) or a graduate/postgraduate student (working toward a Master’s, MBA, JD, MD or PhD degree) in a university or college of distinction at the time they develop and submit their concept. Contestants must be either a full-time or part-time student at a university or college.

Contestants must have a professor or faculty advisor who serves as a mentor for their project.

Contestants may participate as an individual or as a team. Please note that if contestants participate as a team and the team is chosen as one of the three finalists, only the team leader will be flown to the Global Wellness Summit along with his/her professor or faculty advisor.

If a student graduates in spring or summer of 2019, can they still participate?

Yes. Students must be a current student for at least the first school semester of 2019 to be eligible and must be able to provide proof of enrollment in a university or college of distinction. However, they do not need to be enrolled during the Global Wellness Summit, October 15–17, 2019.

Do students have to have a professor or faculty advisor mentor their project?

Yes. Students must be mentored by a professor or faculty advisor from the university they are currently attending.

What are the prizes for the “Shark Tank of Wellness” competition?

First Prize: One (1) first-prize winner will receive USD $5,000.
Second Prize: One (1) second-prize winner will receive USD $3,000.
Third Prize: One (1) third-prize winner will receive USD $2,000.
Total value of all prizes is USD $10,000.

Additional noncash prizes include airfare and hotel accommodations in Hong Kong for the top three student finalists (individual or team leader) and their professors (one professor per student). Also included is access to the three-day Summit (USD $4,170 value), including all general sessions, breakout discussions, and industry forums, featuring global industry leaders. A myriad of social events and a final evening gala is included. This is a priceless opportunity to meet and learn from global visionaries.

When does the “Shark Tank of Wellness” competition begin?

The 2019 “Shark Tank of Wellness” competition begins on February 15, 2019. Submissions will be accepted through May 15, 2019.

When does the “Shark Tank of Wellness” competition end?

The 2019 “Shark Tank of Wellness” competition will end on May 15, 2019. Students must complete the Concept Submission Form, including a public link to the video submission no later than May 15, 2019, at 12:00 p.m. US Eastern Standard Time. Late submissions will not be accepted.

When will the top three finalists be announced?

The top three finalists will be announced on August 15, 2019. Arrangements will then be made to fly each of the top three student finalists and their mentoring professors to Hong Kong for the Global Wellness Summit, October 15–17, 2019 at the Grand Hyatt Hong Kong.

When will the first, second and third place finalists be decided?

During the 2019 Global Wellness Summit, October 15–17, the top three finalists will present their ideas on stage. The video they created will be shown, followed by a two-minute pitch to the “Wellness Sharks,” who will ask questions of the students to defend their innovation and make a business case for its feasibility. The “Wellness Sharks” will then deliberate and announce the first, second and third place winners on October 17, 2019. The winners will be listed on the Global Wellness Summit website and promoted on social media post-Summit.

What are the Judging Criteria?

Entries will be judged on the following criteria, which will hold equal weight:
Project innovation,
Visual appeal or design,
Relevance and importance to the wellness industry,
Viability as a business (customer/market analysis and competitors), and
Quality of the project presentation.

Judges’ decisions are final.

What is the judging process?

The judging panel is comprised of the competition sponsors, who play the role of “Wellness Sharks.” All “Wellness Sharks” are leading experts in the wellness industry. The first judging round will determine the top three finalists, who will be flown to the 2019 Global Wellness Summit to compete for the prize money. Finalists will be announced on August 15, 2019. The second judging round will take place October 15–17, 2019, to determine the first, second and third place winners. Students will present their ideas on stage during the 2019 Global Wellness Summit, where the “Wellness Sharks” will ask questions of the students. The first, second and third place winners will be announced October 17, 2019, on stage during the Global Wellness Summit.

Who can I contact for more information?

For additional information, please contact Kate Sornson.