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Developing your pitch

 

Your company’s pitch may define your success in raising capital, building business alliances and gaining market share.

The traditional multi-page, chart-laden business plan is largely being replaced with documents that convey essential information in a more concise format.

The Executive Summary and pitch deck both play important and related roles in helping potential stakeholders understand your business proposition and attracting outside capital.

Executive Summary

In most cases, the executive summary will be the first document you submit to potential investors, and will be reviewed to determine whether they are interested in learning more about your startup. This one- or two-page document will provide basic information about your company, team, product or service, and market.

Your goal in preparing an executive summary is to describe the product briefly, identify the market opportunity, introduce the founders and management team, provide financial projections, and create enough interest to an in-person pitch with investors.

Pitch Presentation

During the initial pitch meeting, you'll be asked to share a presentation with slides highlighting more detailed information.

Investors will be interested in the following information:

  • Company, including the founders and their industry experience
  • Product or service, including features and benefits, and product specifications and technical requirements
  • Management and technical teams, with an emphasis on engineering talent, experience and entrepreneurial track record
  • Market opportunity and existing competitors
  • Sales and marketing strategy, including pricing and distribution
  • Development milestones
  • Financial information including projected sales and profits, capital requirements, and exit strategy
  • Other capital already in the company
  • Perceived valuation
  • Other advisors or consultants supporting the company

In addition to the potential financial returns, investors will be interested in evaluating your team's ability to execute while creating and sustaining a viable product. While they may appear skeptical as they evaluate the opportunity investors will play a critical support role in your company if they decide to invest.

Investors offer valuable advice and experience to help you avoid common pitfalls and optimise your company’s approach to the marketplace, and often provide access to business partners or markets more readily than a startup might be able to achieve on its own.

 

Excerpted from KPMG US Start-Up guide


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