Shark Tank Competition

Do you have an innovative idea to help people with epilepsy and seizures?

Throw it to the sharks!

2020 Shark Tank Competition Finalists

  • Aditya Kadambi from Mocxa for their automated privacy enhancement for seizure videos
  • Atilla Borbath from Synergia Medical for their NAO-VNS product
  • Boris Goldstein PhD from Brain Scientific for his graphene electrodes in under the skin EEG implants
  • Jong Woo Lee MD along with Product Architectures for their night-time SUDEP prevention device
  • Keely McCarthy, parent of a child living with epilepsy, for her emergency epilepsy band

2020 Epilepsy Foundation Shark Tank Competition!

The Epilepsy Therapy Project, an initiative of the Epilepsy Foundation, is inviting entries that represent the most innovative new ideas in epilepsy treatment and care for its annual Shark Tank Competition. The winner(s) of the 2020 Shark Tank Competition will receive international recognition and compete for awards totaling up to $200,000 to support the development and commercialization of an important new product, technology, or therapeutic concept to help people with epilepsy.

The deadline for submitting a Letter of Intent (LOI) is September 16, 2019. The Shark Tank review committee will select as many as five (5) finalists. All finalists will be invited to present their product concepts or candidates at the 2020 Epilepsy Pipeline Conference, scheduled for March 12-13, 2020. The winning entry (or entries) will be selected through live voting by conference attendees, and a panel of judges (Sharks) representing physicians and scientists, corporate executives, leading industry investors, people with epilepsy, and advocates. The project(s) deemed to be the most innovative will be announced at the conference, and the winner(s) can receive as much as $200,000 to accelerate the idea towards improving the quality of life of people with epilepsy. All finalists are eligible for a travel stipend to attend the conference and free conference registration.

Examples of Novel Concepts

  • Drug or device treatment that stops a seizure, especially those already developed or approved for a different indication
  • System that helps patients manage their treatment or their epilepsy (less invasive, less costly anti-epileptic drug measurement, for example)
  • Device that prevents personal injury from a seizure
  • Any other concept that could improve the lives of people with epilepsy potentially in the near future

Submission Details

LOI Applications due Monday, September 16, 2019.

The proposal must include information about intellectual property, and a brief development outline with milestones for deliverables. Explain the potential impact on people with epilepsy in terms of the creativity/ingenuity of the concept, as well as significance of this concept as an advancement for people with epilepsy.


  • Applicants must demonstrate an ability to move the proposed plan to completion, showing how the prize can accelerate any step along the path to market.
  • Inventors who submitted ideas for previous Shark Tank Competitions are encouraged to re-submit their ideas if substantial progress has been made.
  • Applicants may reside in any country. No specific background or experience is required.

Address questions to

Instructions for a Letter of Intent

Please submit your LOI by Monday, September 16, 2019, 5:00 PM Eastern Time.

Proposal Content and Layout

  1. Title of proposed project (maximum 50 characters)
  2. Leader (name, title, affiliation, address, telephone, email address)
  3. Key collaborators (names, titles, affiliations)
  4. Brief summary of project goals and plans/approaches (not to exceed half a page)
    1. Focus specifically on what your project would bring to people with epilepsy and when
  5. Brief description of what is unique about the project. If it is competitive to any existing product or service, please describe how your project compares to any competitor. (1 paragraph)
  6. Detailed description of how you plan to accomplish the overall plan (1 page)
    1. Estimated steps/milestones/timeline to reach patients
    2. Go/No Go decision points
  7. Brief description of intellectual property position and potential for commercialization: Investment potential and likelihood of ongoing funding support to reach patients (1 paragraph)
  8. Anticipated total budget and outline of what a prize of up to $200,000 will allow you to accomplish

Proposal Submission

  • Must not exceed 4 pages, inclusive of all information listed above. Minimum 10 point font.
  • Convert LOI document to a PDF and send to
  • A confirmation email will be replied to within 24-48 hours upon receipt of your LOI submission. If you have not received confirmation, please call: 301.918.3726.


Proposals will be scored based on the following criteria:

  1. Potential benefit and appeal to people with epilepsy and their families
  2. Likelihood of Development: Investment potential and consideration of ongoing funding support
  3. Intellectual Property Strategy and Status: Freedom to operate
  4. Timeframe and probability of success
  5. Fit with program mission
  6. Overall Impression

Selected Proposals/Finalists

As many as five (5) finalists will be selected to present at the 2020 Epilepsy Pipeline Conference (Santa Clara, CA, March 12-13, 2020). Each presenter will have 5 minutes to present the concept, followed by 5 minutes of questioning. The "Shark Tank" event will feature live voting among audience members and a panel of judges (Sharks) representative of industry, advocacy, investors, and the research and medical communities. The winning project, or projects, deemed to be the most innovative will be announced at the conclusion of the competition.


Q: What does a Shark Tank funding agreement look like? 

A: Please see the document below for a template grant agreement for a company applicant. If there are additional questions regarding the funding arrangement, we are always happy to discuss any concerns or issues that you might have. Our primary goal is to be supportive of the awardee and assist in getting a successful product to market!


 Q: What is the selection criteria?  

A: We selected our finalists based on the uniqueness of the solution proposed, the potential for transformative impact, and the likelihood that the solution could get to market in a timeframe that matters.  

 Q: If selected as a finalist, what should I expect? 

A: After we select our five finalists, we provide pitch coaching sessions prior to the big event. Please click here to view an example shark tank event to see what the actual event looks like.