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Highlights from Celebrating Female Founders Pitch Competition

· SOTY Podcast

On this episode of the Startup of the Year podcast, we feature the highlights from our virtual pitch competition, Celebrating Female Founders.

We had a great group of female-led companies presenting their pitches. The STARTUPS included: Cherry Blossom Intimates (Washington, D.C.); MITO Material Solutions (Indianapolis, IN); Pocketnest (Ann Arbor, MI); PredictivCare (Bethesda, MD); and ReThink Words (Chicago, IL)

The event was presided over by an incredible group of esteemed judges that included Jean Case (National Geographic, Case Impact Network); Eric Bahn (Hustle Fund); Cheryl Campos (Republic); Jesse Draper (Halogen VC); and Phil Nadel (Forefront Venture Partners).

This Fast-Track competition followed a quick pitch format: after their quick pitch video, the founder comes on screen to interact with the judges for eight minutes of Q&A. The judges score each startup, and we award the Fast-Track winner during the session! The winner receives a guaranteed spot in our Top 100 Competition at the Summit.

Screen shot of the Virtual Pitch Event judges panel

Make sure to give background information on the team and the founder!” - Phil Nadel

“Especially if you have only 2-3 minutes, start with a compelling story or start, up front, with the problem and go straight into your traction or partnerships. That way, when we hear the rest of your pitch, we can validate what we’re hearing. That makes a really compelling pitch especially if you have a limited amount of time.” - Cheryl Campos

“For these quick pitches, try hitting 5 pillars: Team, Problem, Solution, Marketing, Traction. That should cover most of your bases. Think about your own elevator pitches; that’s a good litmus test to check your pitch.” - Eric Bahn

Market size and revenue are important numbers to share in your pitch. And people are much more visual. If you’re in a complicated industry, it’s important to make sure you show some interesting visuals that explain in layman's terms what you’re doing, how you’re solving problems, and what you’re doing that’s different. Break it down for the judges.” - Jesse Draper

Congratulations to the winner of the pitch event, MITO Material Solution. Also, a huge shout-out to our People's Choice Award winner, Cherry Blossom Intimates.

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