Pitch competitions aren't just about cash and credibility, they are an exciting experience and a clever way to meet investors with whom you couldn't rub elbows otherwise!
Sabrina Meksaoui, winner of a Startup Weekend Pitch contest knows it! She tells you about her own experience and gives you precious tips!
I am a born entrepreneur. I launched my first pastry startup when I was a student in Tokyo. I mainly sold birthday cakes to international students. It was a great experience that allowed me to pay for my studies and most importantly, it allowed me to build my first professional experience. I had the opportunity to work in 4 continents and now I can talk 5 different languages which is an asset for my work. Today, I am co-founder of Primus Peak Consulting.
My main strengths? My creativity, my strategic vision and my experience in data analysis.
I participated in a pitch competition organized by Start-up Weekend. The objective was to build with your team a profitable startup – from the product conception to the business plan – within 54 hours and finally the goal was to pitch this project to other entrepreneurs and experts in a group. All of that in a fun and fast-paced atmosphere.
My idea “La Cerise Sur Le Gâteau” (The Icing On The Cake) linked my two passions: pastry and technology. It is a monthly box, delivered at your place with the slogan “Paris' best pastry chef at your door”. This box is connected to an online market place, where the chefs can promote their creation and where the pastry lovers can have their little weakness delivered to their home.
So here are 6 tips from my experience that will distinguish you from the competition:
1. Limited time: the pitch has to be structured and focused on the essential.
2. Story-telling: my own story in pastry gave my project credibility.
3. Bend the numbers: investors like to see numbers. They appreciated the fact that I presented the current market, the initial investment required, the break-even point date, the estimated profit and so on.
4. Take initiatives and resolve issues: I tried to provide solutions to the potential questions that investors may have had about the challenges to take into account when launching a project like mine (logistics, cold chain etc.).
5. Long term strategic vision: once you have presented your project, you have to explain its growth potential (economic as well as geographic).
6. Be a great orator: have confidence in yourself, your project and present it with a smile. Yes, you can hear a smile.
So, ready to pitch Your startup?