Business & Tech

Forbes 30 Under 30 Summit contests to award $1m to young entrepreneurs

FILE - In this June 20, 2016 file photo, actor Ashton Kutcher attends the Museum of the Moving Image's 2016 Industry Tribute in New York. Kutcher, Gwyneth Paltrow and “Eat Pray Love” author Elizabeth Gilbert are scheduled to speak in November at a three-day event sponsored by Airbnb in Los Angeles. Kutcher is an investor in Airbnb and a number of other tech startups. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)
Evan Agostini/Invision/AP/file 2016
Ashton Kutcher is among several high-profile venture capitalists who will award $1 million in prize money during a pair of pitch contests at Forbes 30 Under 30 Summit in Boston this October.

The startup crowd that will descend on Boston this October as part of Forbes 30 Under 30 Summit might just leave a bit richer.

On Monday, organizers of the summit announced that several high-profile venture capitalists, including actor and investor Ashton Kutcher, will be awarding $1 million in prize money to young entrepreneurs during a pair of “Change the World” pitch contests during the Oct. 16-19 event. The funds will be divvied up among nonprofit and for-profit companies that have founders younger than 30.

Kutcher and the partner at his Sound Ventures investment firm, Hollywood producer Guy Oseary, will be joining Rough Draft Ventures, the Boston-based student venture arm of General Catalyst, to run the contest for the for-profit businesses. And the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation of Tulsa, Okla., will underwrite the nonprofit contest, which will award funds to startups working on educational efforts.


Boston College students and faculty will serve as judges, winnowing down the field to four top contenders per category, said Jere Doyle, who runs BC’s Shea Center for Entrepreneurship. “There’s no better way to learn about entrepreneurship than to see what’s going on in the world and be a part of the judging,” he said.

Get Talking Points in your inbox:
An afternoon recap of the day’s most important business news, delivered weekdays.
Thank you for signing up! Sign up for more newsletters here

Applicants can apply online through Sept. 6.

The pitch contest is one of dozens of events planned for the weekend summit, and Kutcher is just one of many celebrity investors scheduled to attend. He has been dabbling in investing in startups since at least 2010, when he was among the early investors in Uber.

Actress Jessica Alba, who founded the Honest Company, author Deepak Chopra, and chef Bobby Flay will also be on hand to offer their secrets to success.

Janelle Nanos can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @janellenanos.