Female Founders – ACT NOW Award
African Challenge 2023
STARTUP CHALLENGE OFFICIAL RULES
The following rules, terms and conditions (the “Official Rules”) govern your entry to and participation in the managerohnegrenzen x encourageventures Female Founders – ACT NOW Award, African Challenge 2023 (the “Contest”). Your participation in and submission to a Contest entry constitutes your acceptance of, and agreement to be bound by, these Official Rules. If you agree to these Official Rules on behalf of a Startup or any other valid entity (defined in Section 3.1 below, you represent and warrant that you have the authority to bind the Startup to these Official Rules and your agreement to these Official Rules will be treated as the agreement of such Startup. In that event, unless otherwise indicated, “you” and “your” herein refers to that Startup. In the following, the term “start-up” shall include any other entity as well.
NO PURCHASE OR PAYMENT NECESSARY. A PURCHASE OR PAYMENT OF ANY KIND WILL NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING. THE CONTEST IS SUBJECT TO ALL APPLICABLE LAWS AND VOID WHERE PROHIBITED. PARTICIPATION IN THE CONTEST IS NOT LIMITED TO CLIENTS OR MEMBERS OF THE SPONSORS (AS DEFINED IN SECTION 1 BELOW).
SPONSORS MAY MAKE CHANGES TO THESE OFFICIAL RULES AT ANY TIME IF IT BECOMES NECESSARY FOR SPONSORS TO DO SO (FOR INSTANCE IF THE “managerohnegrenzen x encourageventures FEMALE FOUNDER – ACT NOW Award, African Challenge 2023” FINALIST PITCH NIGHT WILL BE AN ONLINE EVENT VIA ZOOM.). SPONSORS WILL ENDEAVOUR TO PROVIDE NOTICE OF ANY SUCH CHANGES AS SOON AS POSSIBLE ON THE CONTEST SITE OR IN OTHER APPROPRIATE MESSAGING.
1. SPONSORS. The sponsors of the Contest are managerohnegrenzen gGmbH and encourageventures e.V. (address for various offices published at www.managerohnegrenzen.de or www.encourage-ventures.com) (each a “Sponsor” and together the “Sponsors”).
2. DATES AND TIMELINE. Encourageventure e.V.’s computer will be the Contest’s official clock, and all times are provided in Central European Time (CET). The Contest begins on May 9th, 2023, at noon CET and ends upon the conclusion of the managerohnegrenzen x encourageventures Female Founders – ACT NOW Award, African Challenge 2023 Finalist Pitch Night (the “Summit”) (the “Contest Period”). The Contest Period is comprised of the submission period followed by two (2) periods of judging, as further described below in Sections 2.2 and 2.3. Before the start of each period or round, the Sponsors reserve the right to postpone or modify the start or end date of that period or round.
2.1 Submission Period. The “Submission Period” begins on May 9th , 2023 at noon CET and ends on August 6th, 2023 at 11:59 AM CET. Please see Sections 4 et seq. for further information on the submission process.
2.2 Judging Period. The “Judging Period” begins on August 6th, 2023 at noon CET and ends on September, 21th and consist of two rounds: 1) the pre-judging round from August 6th, 2023 at noon CET to September 7th at noon CET and 2) the finalist round ending September 21st, 2023 at 12 pm CET.
Please see Sections 9 and 10 for further information on the judging process.
2.3 The finalists will be announced on September 7th, 2023. From September 8th until the Challenge, the preparation phase starts, in which the finalists are coached in their pitches.
3.1 Eligible Startup. The Contest is only open to valid Start-ups (each, a “Startup”) that: (a) are founded and located in Africa; (b) are in good standing and in compliance with all applicable laws, regulations, rules, and ordinances (collectively “Laws”) in each jurisdiction in which they were formed and/or incorporated, and (c) are operating and are permitted by the Laws of each such jurisdiction to enter and compete in this Contest. In addition, to be eligible to enter the Contest, the Startup must, as of the entry date and through the date the Winner is announced: (i) have not raised any VC funding from VC Funds; (ii) meet the additional requirements set forth in Section 5 (Entry Requirements); (iii) operate a sustainable and viable business (see 10.1) and (iv) have at least one female founder or female in the executive management team, subject to the restrictions set forth in Section 3.2.
3.2 Ineligible Persons and Entities. The following persons and entities are not eligible to enter the Contest (a) individuals and sole proprietorships;
(b) system integrators and professional services firms (collectively “Managed Service Providers”), including subsidiaries of such Managed Service Providers;
(c) employees of managerohnegrenzen gGmbH or encourageventures e.V., and each of its respective directors, officers, affiliates, subsidiaries, advertising and promotion agencies, suppliers, representatives, agents, immediate family members and/or those living in the same household of each;
(d) entities that are managed or majority owned by individuals who: (i) are currently employed by managerohnegrenzen gGmbH or encourageventures e.V. or were employed by one of them as of 1st of January 2023 (ii) are immediate family (spouse, parents, siblings, or children) or household members of any of the employees or former employees listed in Section 3.2(d)(i); (iii) are a Contest Judge (defined in Section 9 below) or immediate family (spouse, parents, siblings, or children) or household members of a Contest Judge; (iv) are current employees of an entity in which one of the Sponsors, managerohnegrenzen gGmbH or encourageventures e.V., has invested and holds an ownership interest; or (v) are professionally involved in the development or administration of the Contest.
All potential winners are subject to eligibility verification before any prizes are awarded. See Section 7 (Verification) for further information.
3.3 Eligible Representative. The Startup must appoint and authorize an individual (the “Representative”) to act and enter the Contest on its behalf. The Representative must be: (a) 18 years or older as of the date of the entry; (b) above the age of majority in the state or jurisdiction where the Representative resides at the time of entry; and (c) a female founder of the Startup or female part of the executive leadership team. The designation of such an individual will mean the Representative has been given and has full authority to bind the Startup to these Official Rules. For the avoidance of doubt, by submitting an Entry (defined in Section 4.1 below) to the Contest, each Representative represents and warrants that they are authorized to act on behalf of their Startup and that these Official Rules are binding on the Representative, individually, and their Startup. Representative further warrants that: (i) their Startup has full knowledge of the Representative’s actions and has consented thereto; and (ii) such actions do not violate the policies and procedures of their Startup.
All Startups and their Representatives are responsible for ensuring they are in compliance with any employment or other contract to which they are a party, including, for example, eligibility to participate in promotions and acceptance of prize awards.
4. HOW TO ENTER.
4.1 Contest Site. To enter the Contest, visit www.encourage-ventures.com/challenge (the “Contest Site”) during the Submission Period and follow all posted instructions to submit information on how the Startup uses the encourageventures’ platform as a core part of the architecture of its application. This information, and the submission materials (including the demo (defined in Section 5.1 below)) and presentation content (collectively, the “Entry”) must meet the requirements as described below and include elements reflected in Section 5 (Entry Requirements). Furthermore, all information about the applications on the encourageventures platform will be shared with managerohnegrenzen.
4.2 Limit one (1) Entry per Startup. Each Startup (as represented by their designated Representative) is only permitted one (1) Entry into the Contest. Subsequent entries will be disqualified and will not be considered. Entries are void if they are in whole or part illegible, incomplete, damaged, altered, counterfeit, obtained through fraud, or late. All Entries will be deemed made by the Authorized Account Holder of the email address submitted at the time of Entry, and a potential winner may be required to show proof of being the Authorized Account Holder for that email address. The “Authorized Account Holder” is the natural person assigned to an email address by an internet service provider, online service provider, or other organization responsible for assigning email address for the domain and must be the designated Representative of the Startup.
5. ENTRY REQUIREMENTS.
5.1 Entry. In addition to the requirements set forth in Section 4.1 above, a Startup’s Entry must include the following: (a) a complete company profile, including name, email address, phone number, title, country of incorporation of the Startup; (b) a brief description of the viable, sustainable business that will be accessed and evaluated by the Sponsors (see Section 10.1.); (c) a pitch deck that summarizes the problem for which the Startup provides a solution, the competitive advantage of the Startup, the current traction, and the size of the opportunity; and (d) a narrated demo video of up to three (3) minutes that is an on-screen recording in MP4 format showing the business idea in use. In addition, the start-up must qualify for one of the following categories: impact, innovation, performance. Once the Submission Period has ended, the Entry cannot be changed or updated. Entries submitted, in whole or in part, outside of the Submission Period are invalid and will not be considered. Incomplete Entries are also invalid and will not be considered. An Entry is only then considered to be submitted in due time if and to the extent all Entry requirements/components are received by the Sponsors through the Content Site before the lapse of the Submission Period. Proof of timely submission is provided by the electronic time stamp on the Entries. Incomplete Entries cannot be acknowledged and will not be returned. The Sponsors are not responsible for any errors, omissions, or failures in the submission of any Entry or in the Startup not maintaining accurate contact information during the Submission Period.
5.2 Language. All Entries, including any oral presentations, must be in English.
6. ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR ENTRIES. Each Startup is entirely responsible for its Entry, submission materials, and presentation content, in whole or in part. By submitting an Entry and participating in the Contest, the Startup represents and warrants that its Entry, submission materials, and presentation content: (a) do not contain any defamatory, offensive or otherwise inappropriate materials; (b) are original, not copied, in whole or in part, and are exclusively owned and gratuitously provided without any restriction or limitation on use; (c) do not infringe or misappropriate of any intellectual property rights or confidential or proprietary information of any third party; (d) do not contain any confidential or proprietary information of any entity or person, including the Startup; (e) do not contain any material that violates any privacy or publicity right of any person; (f) do not reflect any duty of attribution, or any compensation obligation; (g) do not contain any content that would violate any law, statute, ordinance, rule or regulation, or any agreement with another person or entity; (h) do not contain software viruses, Trojan horses, worms, time bombs, bots, or any other computer code or files that are designed to disrupt damage, impact, or limit the functioning of any software or hardware in any way; and (i) are not misleading, and are true and accurate. The Sponsors, in their sole discretion, reserve the right to remove the Entry, submission materials, and presentation content from the Contest Site, in whole or in part, for any violation of these Official Rules.
7. VERIFICATION. During the Contest Period, the Sponsors, their agents and/or the Contest Judges will evaluate the Entry for the Startup’s compliance with these Official Rules and satisfaction of the minimum requirements for the Entry to be judged in the Contest. Sponsors reserve the right, in their sole discretion, to disqualify any Entry that they ascertain at any time does not meet the requirements for the Entry and these Official Rules during or after the Contest Period. Sponsors further reserve the right before awarding any prize, to have the Startup, through its Representative, execute a declaration (or affidavit) of compliance and agreement with these Official Rules, compliance with all applicable laws, and/or confirmation of eligibility, the publicity release, and the copyright license in connection with any round of the Contest.
8.1 Intellectual Property of Startup. Subject to the licenses described below, any applicable intellectual property rights to an Entry (including the submission materials and presentation content) will be owned by and remain with the Startup.
8.2 License Grant. By entering the Contest, the Startup grants to the Sponsors and any other third parties acting on the Sponsors’ behalf, a royalty-free, non-exclusive, worldwide, irrevocable license to display the Entry publicly and use the Entry (including the submission materials and presentation content) for promotional and any other purposes in perpetuity without further consideration or payment of any type. This license includes, but is not limited to, posting, or linking to the Entry on Sponsors’ and partners’ websites and applications, including the Contest Site, and displaying and promoting the Entry in any other media, worldwide, including publication of the name, description, images, video URL, website URL, and team members.
8.3 Representation and Warranty. Each Startup represents and warrants that the Sponsors and their partners are free to use the Entry in the manner described above, as provided or as modified by the Sponsors, without obtaining permission or license from any third party and without any compensation to the Startup.
9. JUDGING. Eligible Entries will be evaluated by a panel of judges selected by the Sponsors for each round of the Contest (the “Contest Judges”) as further specified in Section 10 (Criteria and Selection). Judging will take place in two periods in accordance with Section 10 below. All decisions of the Contest Judges and Sponsors are final, non-appealable, and binding, and in their sole discretion applying the criteria to the Entries. By participating in the Contest, each Startup agrees it has no right to request, and Sponsors have no obligation to disclose, the score or assessment given to its Entry at any time in any round of the Contest or in the entirety of the Contest.
10. CRITERIA AND SELECTION.
10.1 Judging Period 1. All eligible Entries will be reviewed by Contest Judges to select up to six (6) finalists (each, a “Finalist”). Contest Judges in period 1 will score Entries according to the following criteria: (a) Impact: Extent to which the Startup creates impact: Effects on environment, impact on the people of the surrounding area, diversity, entrepreneurship; (b) Innovation: Technology, renewable energies, digitalization, originality and innovation level of the business solution compared to existing alternatives (c) Performance: Productivity, growth and development potential, order volume, sales strength and viability of implementing the solution; (d) the profile of the founder(s) and co-founder(s), their judged ability to lead the business to success, hard and soft skills of the operational team; and (e) the competitive advantage the Startup provides (collectively, “Period 1”). The Finalists selected to proceed to period 2 will be notified promptly following the conclusion of period 1 and identified on the Contest Site.
10.2 Finalists period: period 2. Finalists will be required to: (a) participate in pitch training between 08th September and 20th September. and (b) present their final business pitch at the Challenge through up to two (2) executives of each of the six (6) Finalists. Each Finalist will be required to give a presentation of up to six (6) minutes and answer follow-up questions of up to five (5) minutes. Contest Judges for period 2 will evaluate Finalists based on the period 1 Criteria, and the oral presentations given by the Startup at the Summitt (collectively, “Period 2”). Contest Judges will provide their evaluations to Sponsors who will verify the Entries and, based on the evaluations of the Contest Judges, determine in their sole discretion one winner in each category “impact, innovation and performance”. The winners will be notified at the challenge and presented with their prizes. In addition, following the conclusion of the challenge the winner and follow-up winners will be identified on the Contest Site.
11. CONTEST PRIZES.
11.1 Finalist Prizes. Sponsors will promote each of the six (6) Finalists (a) in a promotional blog post written about each Finalist with links to their respective websites that will be posted on social media channels of one or both Sponsors and (b) at the Summit using the quotes and photos submitted during the application process on banners. The Finalists will also receive a one-hour pitch class together with the other finalists and one hour of individual pitch training between *8th September to 20th September.
11.2 Winner Prize. The Winner will receive a prize comprised of the following elements (collectively the “Winner Prize”):
(i) the opportunity to present at the Challenge to investors and potential costumers attending the Challenge
(ii) winner certificate for the Female Founders ACT NOW Award
(iii) Audience Award: 1.000€ The condition is that the prize is used for an entrepreneurial purpose or a special investment for the winning company
11.3 Non-Transferable. No prize is transferable or assignable to any other person or entity. Prizes have no cash value unless the prize is a cash component and cannot be substituted except in the sole discretion of Sponsors. Sponsors will not replace any lost or stolen prizes. Startups are solely responsible for any and all federal, state, provincial and local taxes, if any, that apply to prizes.
11.4 Winners’ List. A list of prize winners will be published on the Contest Site following the conclusion of the Contest.
12. PRIVACY. Sponsors will collect personal data from and about a Startup, including but not limited to its Representative or other team members online, including without limitation, through the Entry, submission materials and presentation content. Such data will be collected in accordance with the Privacy Policies applicable to the Contest Site, and as otherwise described in these Official Rules. By participating in the Contest, the Startup and its Representative each expressly agree to the collection and use of personal information submitted, and that of the Startup’s officers, directors and employees or representatives participating directly or indirectly in the Contest, consistent with the Privacy Policies applicable to the Contest Site, in connection with the activities of Sponsors in promoting and administering the Contest, and in regards to any activities of the Sponsors in connection with their business related to the Contest. The Startup and its Representative each further expressly agree that the Sponsors are allowed to mutually disclose and freely transfer from one to the other Sponsor any personal information submitted for the purposes of this Contest, including to Third Parties for the purpose of promoting and administrating the Contest and Finalists, without requiring any further approval by the Startup and/or its Representative and irrespective of whether separate privacy policies of any Sponsor have been accepted by the Startup and/or its Representative in advance.
13. GENERAL CONDITIONS.
By entering the Contest, Startup agrees that these Official Rules are the controlling rules for the Contest and Startup agrees to be bound exclusively by these Official Rules and the decisions of Sponsors.
Sponsors are not responsible for lost, late, incomplete, or misdirected entries; lost, interrupted or unavailable network, server or other connections; miscommunications, computer or software malfunctions; transmission problems; technical failures; garbled transmissions; damage to user’s software or transmission devices; or other errors or malfunctions of any kind, whether human, mechanical, electronic or otherwise that may occur in connection with the Contest.
If for any reason, the Contest is not capable of proceeding as planned for reasons outside the control of Sponsors, including without limitation, due to any COVID-19 restrictions or other limitations, which in the sole discretion of Sponsors, may impact the administration, security, fairness, integrity or proper conduct of the Contest (or any portion thereof), Sponsors reserve the right, to cancel, terminate, modify, or suspend the Contest (or any portion thereof) and, in that event, the Sponsors will have no further obligation to any Startup.
Sponsors also reserve the right in their sole discretion to disqualify any Startup if it or its Representative or other individuals associated with it, are found to be: (a) tampering or attempting to tamper with the entry process or the operation of the Contest, or any website maintained or operated by Sponsors; (b) using any robotic, macro, automatic programmed or like type of entry methods; (c) violating these Official Rules; or (d) engaging in unethical, inappropriate or disruptive action or conduct, or taking any action inconsistent with these Official Rules, the fairness of the Contest and the reputation of managerohnegrenzen gGmbH or encourageventures e.V..
Any failure to enforce any terms of these Official Rules will not constitute a waiver of that provision or bar Sponsors from enforcing that term subsequently in connection with the Contest. The headings in these Official Rules are inserted for convenience and identification only, and are not intended to describe, interpret, define or limit the scope or intent of these Official Rules for the Contest. By submitting an Entry, each Startup waives any right it may have to claim ambiguity of these Official Rules or any advantage or any impact on interpretation of these Official Rules that may arise from any such ambiguity claim. These Official Rules will be construed by Sponsor in its sole discretion, its decisions will be binding and final.
14. WARRANTIES. Without limiting any other terms of these Official Rules, by participating in the Contest, each Startup represents and warrants that its participation will comply with these Official Rules and that it has sufficient rights in the Entry (including the related submission materials and presentation content) to authorize the publication and dissemination thereof as contemplated in these Official Rules. No Startup will seek the assistance of any officer, director, employee of managerohnegrenzen gGmbH or encourageventures e.V. apart from these Official Rules and the Contest to attempt to gain any advantage.
15. PUBLICITY AND LICENSE GRANT. Except where prohibited by law, by submitting an Entry, each Startup expressly grants Sponsors a license and consent to use, in its sole discretion, the name, logo and associated trademarks, if any, of the Startup, the country location, photo or likeness, and/or the background of the Startup, and the Entry, submission materials and presentation content, in whole or in part, in connection with the Contest and the business of Sponsors, in any form of media, now known or hereafter created, worldwide, without further permission, payment, or any other consideration.
16. INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OF SPONSORS. The Startup agrees that nothing in these Official Rules or in any other statements made in connection with the Contest grants to any Startup the right or license to use any intellectual property of Sponsors. Startup will not use the name, trademarks, service marks, logos, any copyrighted material or any other intellectual property of the Sponsors (collectively, “Sponsor IP”) without the express written consent of the Sponsors, which the Sponsors may withhold in their sole discretion. Further, the Startup agrees that it will not use as its own, any service mark, service name, trade name, trademark, design or logo(s) confusingly similar to those part of or otherwise embodied in the Sponsor IP. Sponsors retain all rights, including media rights, to promote the Contest and the background and story of the Contest, including any Startup’s participation in the Contest in its sole discretion.
17. NO OBLIGATION OF PROGRAM ENTITIES RE SUBMISSION MATERIALS. Each Startup acknowledges that third parties may submit information and solutions to the Sponsors separate from the Contest that may contain information, ideas, concepts, and approaches similar to, or the same as, those any Startup submits or submitted to the Contest, and that Sponsors may already be working on information, ideas, concepts, and approaches similar to, or the same as, those the Startup submits or submitted to the Contest. By entering, each Startup acknowledges and agrees that the Sponsors’ actions with respect to another Entry or work of its own or of any third party, even if similar to, or the same as, the Startup’s Entry, will not create any liability of any kind to Sponsors or others involved in the Contest. Each Startup also acknowledges and agrees that participation in the Contest, receipt of a prize and/or designation as a Finalist, Winner or Follow-up Winner does not create any obligation on the part of the Sponsors to promote, use in any way, or to take any further action regarding the Entry, submission materials or presentation content of the Startup or the Startup’s involvement in the Contest apart from these Official Rules.
18. RELEASE AND LIMITATION OF LIABILITY.
18.1 BY PARTICIPATING IN THE CONTEST, EACH STARTUP (ON BEHALF OF ITSELF, ITS EMPLOYEES, OFFICERS, DIRECTORS AND ANY OTHER REPRESENTATIVES), AGREES AND ACKNOWLEDGES THAT TO THE EXTENT PERMITTED BY APPLICABLE LAW AND WITHOUT PREJUDICE TO OTHER ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS: (A) ANY AND ALL CLAIMS, JUDGMENTS, SETTLEMENTS, AND AWARDS WILL BE LIMITED TO REASONABLE AND TYPICALLY FORESEEABLE DAMAGES/COSTS THAT ACTUALLY INCURRED (IF ANY) UP TO A MAXIMUM AMOUNT OF EUR 1,000, BUT IN NO EVENT WILL ATTORNEYS’ FEES BE AWARDED OR RECOVERABLE; (B) ANY STARTUP (ON BEHALF OF ITSELF, ITS EMPLOYEES, OFFICERS OR DIRECTORS, AND ANY OTHER REPRESENTATIVES) HEREBY KNOWINGLY AND EXPRESSLY WAIVES ALL RIGHT TO SEEK PUNITIVE, INCIDENTAL, CONSEQUENTIAL OR SPECIAL DAMAGES, LOST PROFITS, AND/OR ANY OTHER TYPE OF DAMAGES, OR ANY RIGHT TO HAVE ANY DAMAGES MULTIPLIED OR OTHERWISE INCREASED; AND (C) EACH STARTUP (ON BEHALF OF ITSELF, ITS EMPLOYEES, DIRECTORS OR OFFICERS, AND ANY OTHER REPRESENTATIVES) IRREVOCABLY WAIVES ANY RIGHT TO SEEK INJUNCTIVE OR EQUITABLE RELIEF. ANY POTENTIAL CLAIM IN ACCORDANCE WITH THIS SECTION 18 BECOMES TIME-BARRED TWO (2) YEARS AFTER THE CONCLUSION OF THE CONTEST UNLESS OTHERWISE RESTRICTED BY MANDATORY RULES. THE RELEASE AND LIMITATION OF LIABILITY ALSO APPLIES TO THE PERSONAL LIABILITY OF REPRESENTATIVES OR AUXILIARY PERSONS OF THE SPONSORS.
18.2 Nothing in the Official Rules will exclude or limit the liability of either party to the other for: death or personal injury arising out of negligence; fraud or fraudulent misrepresentation; or any other liability that cannot be excluded or limited by law.
19. ADDITIONAL TERMS. Each Startup assumes any and all risks associated with the posting and use of the Entry, submission materials, and presentation content, travel and activities arising from or in connection with the Contest, and, to the extent permitted by applicable law, expressly waives and releases any and all claims or causes of action against the Sponsors, their officers, employees, representatives, and agents for any and all injury and damage of any nature whatsoever (whether existing or thereafter, whether direct, indirect, or consequential, and whether foreseeable or not), arising from the Entry, submission materials and presentation content, including but not limited to the ideas submitted to the Contest, and any travel or other activities arising from or in connection with the Contest.
20. INDEMNIFICATION. YOU AGREE TO DEFEND, INDEMNIFY AND HOLD THE SPONSORS (AND CONTEST JUDGES, AND ANY OTHER PERSONS ADMINISTERING THE CONTEST) AND EACH OF THEIR EMPLOYEES, REPRESENTATIVES, AGENTS, ATTORNEYS, AFFILIATES, DIRECTORS, EMPLOYEES, OFFICERS, MANAGERS, AND SHAREHOLDERS (THE “INDEMNIFIED PARTIES”) HARMLESS FROM ANY DAMAGE, LOSS, COST, OR EXPENSE (INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION, ATTORNEYS’ FEES AND COSTS) INCURRED IN CONNECTION WITH ANY THIRD-PARTY CLAIM, DEMAND, OR ACTION (COLLECTIVELY “CLAIM”) BROUGHT OR ASSERTED AGAINST ANY OF THE INDEMNIFIED PARTIES, ALLEGING FACTS OR CIRCUMSTANCES THAT WOULD CONSTITUTE A BREACH OF ANY PROVISION OF THESE OFFICIAL RULES BY THE STARTUP OR ARISING FROM, RELATED TO, OR CONNECTED WITH YOUR ENTRY, SUBMISSION MATERIALS, PRESENTATION CONTENT AND PARTICIPATION IN ANY WAY IN ANY ASPECT OF THE CONTEST, INCLUDING RECEIPT OF ANY PRIZE. IF YOU ARE OBLIGATED TO PROVIDE INDEMNIFICATION PURSUANT TO THIS PROVISION, SPONSORS MAY, IN THE SPONSORS’ SOLE DISCRETION, CONTROL THE DISPOSITION OF ANY CLAIM AT YOUR SOLE COST AND EXPENSE. WITHOUT LIMITATION OF THE FOREGOING, YOU MAY NOT SETTLE, COMPROMISE, OR IN ANY OTHER MANNER DISPOSE OF ANY CLAIM WITHOUT THE SPONSORS’ EXPRESS WRITTEN CONSENT.
21. GOVERNING LAW AND JURISDICTIONS. All issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation, and enforceability of these Official Rules and/or the rights and obligations of each Startup, and of any related or authorized individual or entity of the Startup, or the rights and obligations of the Sponsors, Contest Judges and anyone involved in administering the Contest will be exclusively governed by and construed in accordance with the internal laws of Germany without giving effect to any choice of law or conflict of law rules or provisions that would cause the application of the laws of any other country or jurisdiction, to the extent legally permissible. These Offical Rules are to be interpreted exclusively consistent with German law and usage of terminology. Any litigation arising out of, in connection with, or relating to these Official Rules must be filed and pursued exclusively in the courts in Germany, and each Startup participating in the Contest, and any related person or entity, consents to the jurisdiction of and venue in the courts in Germany.
22. SEVERABILITY CLAUSE. Should a provision of these Official Rules be or become null and void as a whole or in part or should a gap in these Official Rules become evident, this shall not affect the validity of the remaining provisions. In such case, such valid and practicable regulation shall be deemed to be agreed with effect ex tunc that in legal and economic terms comes closest to what the involved parties intended or would have intended in accordance with the purpose of these Official Rules if this point had been considered at the time of concluding and accepting the Official Rules.