Pitchfest: investment readiness offering for UK SMEs

Date: Thursday 11th March 2021

Time: 9.00 - 16.00

Location: TBC

Cost: Free

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Application deadline 11th March

Pitchfest supports innovative and ambitious UK SMEs to get investment ready and develop their investor pitch in order to raise finance.
A funded offering, Pitchfest will support innovative SMEs to accelerate their progress towards scale.

What does Pitchfest offer?

Two-days of comprehensive pitch training

Access to leading pitch and investment experts

Bespoke support from a dedicated innovation and growth specialist 

An opportunity to build a clear, compelling and credible investment proposition

Introductions to active investor networks in your region and across the UK

Supercharging your elevator pitch and building a persuasive investor pitch

Constructive no-risk feedback from a panel of real investors

Pitchfest in 5 steps

1. Preparation meeting

Once successfully accepted onto Pitchfest at the end of the competitive selection process, you will be allocated an innovation and growth specialist. The preparation meeting is a chance to provide key information to your regional Pitchfest Champion and to your innovation and growth specialist. You will discuss the stages of your investment journey so far and establish your goals through a thorough diagnostic process. 

The aim of your regional Pitchfest Champion will be to provide expert knowledge and support your investment journey.


2. Pitch training day 1 (virtual, full day)

Get an insider's look at what investors are looking for, develop your value proposition, 1-minute elevator pitch and slide deck, boost your presentation skills and find out how to manage investor Q&As. You will need to allocate time to prepare a pitch deck for Training Day 2. 


3. Pitch training day 2 and peer-to-peer pitching (virtual, full day)

After two weeks of fine-tuning, deliver a 5-minute pitch for peer-to-peer and trainer feedback. Discover your ideal investor profile, investment legals, how to build your relationships with an investor, negotiate your valuation, structure deals and fundraise efficiently. Before the Investor session, you will work with your Pitchfest Champion and innovation & growth specialist to strengthen your pitch. 


4. Investor session (virtual, full day)

Pitch for 5 minutes to a panel of angel investors and VCs with a Q&A session and constructive feedback.


5. Ongoing bespoke innovation and growth support

Your innovation and growth specialist will support you with your ongoing funding and finance journey, helping you to fully leverage your completed Pitchfest training.

Depending on your stage, for example, they can help by developing a realistic finance strategy to achieve innovation goals and growth ambitions.

Outside of finance and funding, and depending on your needs, they can provide a host of related support tailored for innovative businesses, ranging from access to technical know-how to exploiting IP and entering new markets.

View the delegate event journey


What are the eligibility criteria for Pitchfest?

Innovate UK EDGE is looking for UK registered, high-growth potential innovative SMEs interested in internationalisation and seeking to raise c. £500k of investment. If you are seeking to raise less, please make a case when describing your investment plan.

Your business will need to be looking to pitch to investors (Business Angel / Venture Capital finance), with a minimum of £100k in turnover / sales pipeline / route to market secured.

SMEs can have up to 500 staff (unless in Northern Ireland, when the limit is 250).


How to apply for Pitchfest

To submit your application, please select your region below and click ‘Apply here’. If the link for your region isn’t available yet, sign up to our newsletter to hear when it is.

It is possible to apply for a region were you are not based if you face genuine difficulty attending the dates for your home region.

Pitchfest is highly competitive. Applications are assessed by a panel of experts and only 15 will be successful in each region.

Read the eligibility criteria carefully to ensure your business can apply and answer as fully as you can. 

Please note that all stages of Pitchfest are mandatory to attend and only one representative per company can attend. It must be the same one company representative each time.

Applications deadline: 11 March 2021
Notification of application outcome: 18 March 2021
Prep session:          The Pitchfest Champion will arrange a suitable date
Training day 1:        14 April 2021
Training day 2:        28 April 2021
Investor session:    12 May 2021
Ongoing bespoke support: After 12 May 2021

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