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Learn How to Pitch Your Business Idea to Venture Capitalists

Learn How to Pitch Your Business Idea to Venture Capitalists

TechCrunch Pitch @FOWA from

Panel: Mike Butcher from TechCrunch
Brent Hoberman from LastMinute and MyDeco
Jason Calacanis Mahalo
Ryan Carson Carsonified

Each presenter had 60 seconds to explain what their company does and how they plan to make money
Presenter: Tim
An 800 number for the web was a very vague idea. You can use the microphone and speakers from your computer and you don’t have to find their phone. My question is why was he wearing white gloves?
The Judges did not like it because they would have to sell this to third parties and many people would have to use headsets and Skype could compete but Skype uses Active-x and that is not a popular ap. Graphics were bad that he presented. Live support on the web has been over done. Tim could not differentiate it very well. Based on java and iChat. The technology is not proprietary.
The judges thought Tim was a terrible presenter.
They asked him to explain again and he said it supplies instant verbal communication to Web users and online communities. Users are not required to download any software, surrender personal information, or even use a phone. can help increase Website traffic and stickiness, by enabling the Webpage to become a handset and delivering integrated live voice chat.

Jeanne’s great idea: API that allows users to instantly communicate viaVideo integrated with Adsense using activeX or no install no configure based on Java or Flash. This could be syndicated and embedded.
Presenter: Pascal This is a marketplace for raffles for private parties, businesses and charities that want to run raffles. Everyone is a winner because every time someone buys a raffle ticket they are guaranteed to get something of higher value than the value of their ticket. The reward vouchers come from a related retailer and this drives traffic to the retailer.

Judges thought the presentation was great but a concern was for regulation of the gambling commission because they use the lowest unique number but they got clearance from them. gets a commission from the raffle sales. It could be the YouTube of raffles, which can be syndicated and embedded. There is potential for lead generation for marketers. They will need a lot of venture capital to get a lot of ads
There is great potential for a mobile aspect. Branding is great.
Don’t talk about what the product does Show what the product does and Pascal did this effectively.
The widgets and the interface
It may not be defensible because there are a few lowest unique bidder models already doing business. They would not have the first mover advantage.
Josh Marsh
Introduced as the future of online community. It will allow people to interact with all of the friends from all of their social media sites and integrate any social media site. At the moment they have Facebook, Bebo and MySpace. You can integrate all user data, photos; friend lists from these sites into one convenient place. It will not include the notifications or viral news feeds. Their business model is to charge an ongoing fee and to take a cut on any money gained from selling the ap. For syndication and embedding
The judges thought that Facebook Connect already does this but Josh explained that Facebook Connect only allows you to integrate data into Facebook. Iplatform integrates from all three and puts it in one accessible place. Social media has made the Internet a very noisy place and I personally think this is a great way to filter out some of that noise. How will the licenses be sold what is the value to the user. Chelsea fans on a social network in England was a real life example that got everyone on board. A service will only scale by the size of the team. This idea may not be scalable. They thought it was too simple and the widget economy is never going to be a market. It is a crowded space. The sales model is not a good idea. If companies could just add it on their own that would be best. Get lots of distribution that is free and then people can pay for an upgraded API. Use the Freemium model.
Keld and George
A new way to keep a diary
Web 1.0 was about being public. New social web is intimate communication and collaboration. allows private conversations, sharing files, media and link with your real friends. It is not a blog or a social network; it’s a diary. Blogs needs commitment and social networks have privacy concerns and it is about the quantity of friends not the quality. Target is 16 to 24 year old women that are underserved on the web. Revenue model is targeted ads, premium users, affiliates and a virtual economy.
Judges liked their domain name, but they did not like that they didn’t show the web page. They spent too much time talking about their philosophy of social networking and nobody cares. They should not have criticized blogs and social networks because they are a huge success. They said it sounds like a blog. Their argument is that is a filtering of social networks, calendaring and scrapbooking. They then said it sounded like Box. They said it could be a success if it is executed right. It doesn’t sound like anything unique. They should use the 37 signals approach to software development where you make 5% of the features where 95% of the people can use it including neophytes. The user interface needs to be great. It is a focused and underserved market great to attract advertisers.

MMOG game risk meets civilization browser based virtual copy of the real world based in text format. Revenue model is virtual currency.

Judges thought the site looked beautiful. They asked why is this better than other MMOGs. Taking feedback from the community to develop this. It is a pure strategy game but it only takes 15-minute segments of your time. Virtual currency will overtake the subscription fee model. They will all be free. You have to take an IQ test in order to compete in some areas. The judges thought that strategy games are addictive to a lot of people so it will succeed. This was their favorite pitch.

VCs don’t care about the market or your partner but they care about numbers. Have you built an audience are you making any money yet, what has been your growth.
A power point presentation will not win you the money a good track record will.

iPlatform came in 3rd came in 2nd
eRepublic came in 1st

This panel discussion was about how to pitch to VCs and how to evaluate a good idea and what would potential investors think.

The judges suggested that presenter should not say this is what we do this is what were going to do. They should just show it. Show something beautiful and simple. Let passion show through and practice your pitching.


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Jeanne Mayeux

Jeanne Mayeux is a documentary producer director with more than 25 programs to her credit. Shows that she has worked on have won an Oscar, Emmy, Cable Ace and a Clio. Mayeux is skilled in all aspects of the production process from research, coordinating the production, script writing, interviewing and editing and a strong background in creating personal profiles for television. She produced magazine length shows for Fox News Channel, Iyanla, Inside Edition, E Entertainment, Sightings and Strange Universe. As the owner of Fulltilt Boogie Productions in Los Angeles she produced and acted as creative collaborator with director Mark Pellington on an award winning Honda commercial. Working with some of the most prestigious ad agencies including BBDO, Rubin Postaer and Fallon McGelligot she has produced and consulted on commercials for Pepsi, Black & Decker and The Wall Street Journal. As a creative consultant she worked one on one with director Cameron Crowe to create a short film in the Academy Award winning film Jerry Maguire. She has produced for numerous newsmagazines and documentaries, which have aired on PBS, ABC, National Geographic, Discovery, FOX, Disney and HBO.