Hello, hello, hello and welcome to the aftermath of iteration #21 of the now infamous Hipsters, Hackers & Hustlers “Co-founder Dating & Speed Pitching” event at Google Campus! We’re safely back in the green room after another storming performance and it’s time to reflect on, review and recommend the fantastic start-ups that we have the privilege of hosting every time we run these awesome events. We love that you love that we love you!
So I kind of made a big deal last month over the fact Co-founder Dating was 20 iterations old, when of course I ought to have put the champagne on ice until we were 21! So no holding back this time !!
We think this may have been our best attended event ever so thanks to everyone who made the effort, we hope you enjoyed the speeches, pitches, BBQ downstairs and networking at the Blueberry Bar with happy hour priced drinks for anybody with an HHH sticker! It’s great to be building bridges with the local community, but it’s also great to be able to offer our members some fantastic opportunities to do their thing; building great companies from the ground up, from bootstrapping to funding to hiring & firing, scaling, wailing, mailing and failing to grinning, sinning and winning…abroad!!
That’s right, we are launching the world’s first tech startup ski-trip, a chance to talk turkey on the slopes with fellow founders and entrepreneurs. Sometimes a change of scene, and altitude, is all you need to see things differently and get a different perspective, so look out for details on our new site, launching soon! And while you’re there, check out the following too: “Startups of the Caribbean” (shiver me timbers), “Techtober Fest” (shiver me pitchers) and “Scream Pitch” at Thorpe Park (shiver with terror)!
And speaking of world firsts, last night at #SpeedPitch, we premiered the launch of SnapZap, an app that is going to take the world of networking and flash PR by storm! SnapZap allows you to Tweet live video clips of events you’re attending, and judging by the buzz on social media last night, SnapZap could be a game changer. It’s certainly the kind of innovative, beautifully designed piece of kit our founders love. And because HHH members are social influencers to a man (or woman), the SnapZap guys couldn’t have chosen a better destination. As usual, you heard it here first!
So before the pitches we like to invite our guest speaker to address the crowd and impart some wisdom, experience and sometimes even a bit of tough love drawn from their own, usually pretty incredible experiences. Well last night was no exception; Matt Doyle from LaunchCloud has had more than his fair share of ups downs, pivots and wacky experiences (racing Lamborghinis around Oklahoma, anyone?). From an early age Matt was doing entrepreneurial stuff, selling T-shirts, running club nights, and camper van-ing around New Zealand with his partner Becky. In short, he lived the life.
Watching Techstars one night in Auckland, he decided to apply for some accelerators courses; what followed was an amazing journey, taking in the US, winning funding, meeting some super smart angel investors, returning to the UK, panicking, keeping his fingers crossed and ultimately being let down by his backers. But never fear, Matt and Becky picked themselves up, took a stroll with the dog around the field at the back of their house, found some investment from an old business partner, rebuilt the business, watched it fail, built it back up again, and (deep breath) won back his clients and delivered an MVP any founder would be proud of! Wow, and he still doesn’t look a day older than 70. Just kidding, a fresh faced founder with an amazing story to tell. If that’s your thing, you really need to come to our next event. Don’t let FOMO eat you up inside, get hustlin’! Like these guys.
Yes it’s time to review the pitches: we had some stellar pitchers as you’d expect, but here’s our 10 favourites, plus the winners; and don’t forget, you can replay all of the pitches by visiting our YouTube channel; it’s well worth a visit, thanks to Radu, our cameraman, the vids are brilliantly edited and look ultra-professional.
Pitch 1: Dan: Hustler: Founders and Coders – every month somebody has to be brave and get the ball rolling; this time it was Dan at Founders & Coders, a school he has set up to help develop young coding talent. Every year 48 top, freshly graduated devs roll off the Founders and Coders production line, and Dan wants to find them more projects to sink their teeth into. So get in touch with Dan if your business needs hungry, talented coders. That would be pretty much everybody, right!
Pitch 2: Lance: Hipster: CultureJump – the best way to find out about nearby cultural events of any kind wherever you happen to be. Abroad, in a new city, looking to find events from your own, or any other cultural background. You might be curious about local culture, desperate not to miss out on an event that is personally significant to you and your culture, or just looking for something new to try. Whatever it is, CultureJump will help you find it. Lance needs a co-founder and some technical help!
Pitch 3: Shane: Hustler: Intelligent Crowd TV – pitch your start-up business to investors all around the world using Intelligent Crowd TV; an Internet TV show watched by angel investors featuring top start-ups, allows you to gauge interest in your project and helps you decide if it’s worth launching that Crowdfunding campaign. If you can cause a stir on Intelligent Crowd TV, you are half way to getting the funding you need!
Pitch 4: Scotty: Borderline Hipster: Majestic3 – forget Salesforce and embrace Majestic 3, the truly disruptive force behind the contract management and CRM markets! Contract management, lead generation and Salesforce tracking – all in one! This is a hot, hot sector, and it deserved a sizzling pitch. It got one, so much so we had to give Scotty a good squirt with the water pistols!
Pitch 5: Richard: Hustler: The Back Pain Mechanic – the causes of lower back pain are many and mysterious, so why not see a specialist and get personalised recommendations on how to ease that pain which has troubled you for years, but you never thought you could solve. Analytics, ongoing support, and data gathering are all part of the solution. Give it a whirl?
Pitch 6: Andrei: Hustler: Disrupts: the magazine for the start-up scene! Now offering free video pitching and expanding into all sorts of exciting new avenues; panel discussions, start-up insight, print and online, check out Disrupts magazine and try one of their events. Invest in them, if you want!
Pitch 7: Elena Corchero: Hacker / Hustler: Lost Values: Elena is creating next generation wearables that not only bring us technological innovation but helps make us better human beings. Innovation for your loved ones, from code-able cuddly toys to high vis fashion, Elena and Lost Values are pushing the envelope; investors, techies, mentors, co-founders take note and get in touch!
Pitch 8: Tim: Hacker: TimBrennanDesigns – amazing graphic design, brilliant illustrations, good pitching! Tim is on a mission to help companies have great ideas. Unbeatable art direction, and you know what they say, if you can’t beat ‘em…that’s right!
Winner # 1 (wins a Nokia 1320 Windows phone!) Rodo: Hustler: this pitcher took everyone by surprise by revealing not one, not two, but 3 branded T-shirts, explaining the 3 areas his business excelled at…apps, websites, platforms! Genius, there was even enough time for extended applause. 20 second pitches, anyone?
Winner # 2 (wins a Nokia 1320 Windows phone!) Sophie: Hustler: Stop my Craving – find healthy alternatives to your favourite unhealthy snacks. Beautifully, patiently explained, and just a smashing idea, really, well done Sophie!
Ladies and gents it was the perfect evening, rounded off with networking and drinks and snacks. If you can’t find what you’re looking for at HHH co-Founder dating, well then, maybe it’s time to call of the search. We’ll be back with more hi-jinks next month!