AB InBev


Bottle Opener Challenge - Invent the closure of the future!

Enhance the consumer bottle-opening experience by re-inventing the way our glass bottles and closures are designed.

This challenge is closed


This challenge is closed



The Bottle Opener Challenge aims to identify a new, ergonomic way to open a bottle that's easy, practical and appealing to our consumers. We welcome entrepreneurs, researchers, scientists, students, and anyone eager to contribute, to jump into this challenge and to find a solution. To register for the challenge, click the “ACCEPT CHALLENGE” button above.  The Challenge Forum is your space to share thoughts and ideas with potential competitors or to create teams with similar visions. 

The Challenge

Ever since William Painter patented his ‘crown cork’ in 1892, bottle caps have remained largely unchanged for over a century. Still today, bottle crowns are generally the same across the beer industry. We believe that together, we can do better. It's time to re-invent our bottle closures and present to our consumers an ergonomic, no-tools-needed, minimum-effort design.

The Current Situation

Our options today are:

  • Pry-off crown corks: by far the most common bottle closure design, but these require access to a bottle opener
  • Twist-off crown corks:  no tools required anymore, but these caps can be hard to open, and its sharp points could potentially cause a consumer to cut their hand when twisting the cap off
  • Screw caps (metal or plastic): these are more expensive
  • Champagne corks: very premium and therefore even more expensive

The Opportunity

We believe that by tapping into your collective intelligence, we can find a more user friendly and cost effective way to open bottles, which doesn't require access to a tool, is easy to use and sustainable. 

The Challenge Breakthrough

Can you invent a solution that

  • maintains quality and freshness as much as today’s solutions;
  • is perceived as better/easier to open by consumers;
  • is environmentally friendly;
  • is equal or better in cost compared to current designs?

We are looking for ideas that 

  • have a high WOW-factor: “Consumers would do anything to get such a product”;
  • have a high FEASIBILITY-factor: “This solution can be implemented easily”.  

What You Can Do To Cause A Breakthrough

  • Click ACCEPT CHALLENGE above to sign up for the challenge
  • Read the Challenge Guidelines to learn about the requirements and rules
  • Share this challenge on social media using the icons above. Show your friends, your family, or anyone you know who has a passion for discovery.
  • Start a conversation in our Forum to join the conversation, ask questions or connect with other innovators.


Challenge Breakthrough

Enhancing the drinking experience by redefining the bottle opening moment



Little has changed in how bottles are sealed and opened, and we have recognised that there is an opportunity for innovation in this area.  Therefore, we want to explore and develop one or more breakthrough bottle closure systems, which significantly re-casts the beer consumption experience for the consumer.



The Challenge offers up to $5,000 USD in prizes to innovative solutions for uncovering new ways to design glass bottles and closures that can enhance the consumer bottle-opening experience. Our company will award 1 price for the best idea.




  • Challenge Length: 5 weeks
  • Judging Length: 5 weeks
    • 1 week for Preliminary Screening
    • 2 weeks for the Judging Panel to evaluate submissions
    • 1 week for a Judging Panel Winner Selection Call
    • 1 week for Due Diligence
  • Challenge Launch Date: 10th October
  • Submission Deadline: 14th November
  • Winner Announcement: 20th December


How Do I Win?

To be eligible for an award, your proposal must, at minimum:

  • Satisfy the Judging Scorecard requirements
  • Thoughtfully address the Submission Form questions
  • Be scored higher than your competitors!
  • Solution: 1 slide on power point including visuals, a short description of the solution, technical details, risk mitigation, cost estimation, benefit to the customer


Judging Criteria


Judging CriteriaDescriptionPoints
Quality of the BeerDoes the solution maintain high quality of the product (carbonation, freshness, taste)?20

Easiness to Open

Does the solution require a tool? How ergonomic is it to open the bottle from a consumer perspective? How much time does it take to open the bottle?20
InnovativenessHow does the solution make a difference in the consumer's drinking experience? How does it differ from existing designs? Has the contestant thought of the WOW-effect of the solution? How attractive is the solution to consumers?  What material is the solution made up of? Has the contestant considered the environmental impact?20
Cost Investment & Easiness to ImplementIs the solution cost effective? What will be the Capital Investment required to implement and sustain the solution? How easy will it be to implement the solution at scale? How long will it take to launch the new closure?20
Sustainability  Is the solution sustainable, taking into account our Company's Better World targets?20


Additional Rules

Awarding Prizes

The highest scoring teams will be awarded a prize based on a formal judging process using the judging criteria stated in the Challenge Guidelines. The determination of the winners will be made by a group of people including experts in R&D and more.

Participation Eligibility

The Bottle Opener Challenge encourages participation from all individuals, private teams, public teams, and collegiate teams. Teams may originate from any country. Submissions must be made in English. All challenge-related communication will be in English. 

No specific qualification or expertise in the FMCG industry is required. Challenge organizers encourage outside individuals and non-expert teams to compete and propose new solutions. To be eligible to compete, you must comply with all the terms of the challenge as defined in the Challenge-Specific Agreement, which will be made available upon registration.

Registration and Submissions

Submissions must be made online (only), via upload to the website, on or before the stated deadlines. No late submissions will be accepted.

Selection of Winners

Based on the winning criteria, prizes will be awarded per the Judging Criteria section above. In the case of a tie, the winner(s) will be selected based on the highest votes from the Judges.

Consolation Prize

In the case of no winner, the Challenge Sponsor reserves the right to withhold the Prize Purse amount. In place of the original prize amount, the Challenge Sponsor must issue a Consolation Prize to the team or individual closest to the winning solution in the amount of at least 10% of the total original prize purse. 

Intellectual Property

The winning submission(s) IP will be transferred to the sponsor, Click here to view the IP Agreement.

Additional Information

  • By participating in the challenge, each competitor agrees to submit only their original idea. Any indication of "copying" amongst competitors is grounds for disqualification.
  • All applications will go through a process of due diligence; any application found to be misrepresentative, plagiarized, or sharing an idea that is not their own will be automatically disqualified.
  • All ineligible applicants will be automatically removed from the competition with no recourse or reimbursement.
  • No purchase or payment of any kind is necessary to enter or win the competition.
  • Void wherever restricted or prohibited by law.

Challenge Updates

8 Hours Remaining

Nov. 13, 2018, 7 a.m. PST by Liz Treadwell

If you're still assembling your submission to the Bottle Opener Challenge, you have 8 hours left to complete it!

Here's a Tip: HeroX recommends innovators plan to submit with at least a 3-hour window of time before the true deadline. Last-minute technical problems and unforeseen roadblocks have been the cause of many headaches. Don't let that be you!

Two Day Warning

Nov. 11, 2018, 3 p.m. PST by Liz Treadwell

This is your official two-day reminder!

That's right, the Bottle Opener Challenge will be closing this coming Tuesday, November 13th. Check the Timeline here to see the exact deadline time for your time zone.

Please be sure to complete your submission form well before the exact cut-off time.

Once the deadline passes, we can no longer accept new submissions!


Got questions?

Now is the time to speak up! Comment directly on this update with any questions about the submission process and we'll get back to you.

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