We held the first pitching evening at COSTECH on Thursday night, Dec. 1st, 2011. Our idea was to see whether people would be interested in this and to provide students and entrepreneurs an opportunity to practise pitching and get constructive feedback. Our plan was to have eight pitches, each limited to three minutes and then a couple of minutes for further questions for each pitch…
And this is exactly was happened! We had eight interesting pitches and a great jury of Mr Kishor Kumar (Tanzania Country Manager at Samsung Electronics), Mr Marlon Parker (RLabs), Mr George Mulamula (CEO of Dar Teknohama Business Incubator) and Dr Raphael Mmasi (Director at COSTECH).
Three minutes is a short time but two pitchers managed to finish their pitch without being cut by the stopwatch alarm. The jury emphasized in the feedback that being able to clearly explain the business model is critical for a successful pitch to an investor or funder. Pitchers were all good in describing their ideas, however more work was needed in some pitches in the market research part, ie. how to prove the feasibility of the idea.
This time the winning pitch was SafariYetu from the DBTi upstairs. Second runner-up was AjiraPage and third Solar Mobile. Here’s Mr Kumar handing the Samsung Galaxy Mini to the happy winner!
In the following discussion about the event itself it was agreed that this should be a recurring event because the only way to become a good pitcher is to practise, practise and practise. Kristiina proposed organizing a full-day Pitching Camp in the Spring where people’s pitches are polished over and over again by filming them, and by learning from seeing your own pitch.
Next pitching event will be held in January. In the meantime we promised to publish video pitches here in the blog, if the pitchers from this pitching evening want visibility and practise.
Check the full story from our Flickr photoblog: