Pitch Up

The established premier pitching competition of the West Midlands is back with a new name; Minerva Birmingham Pitch Up. The pitching competition (previously known as Pitchfest WM) will still hold its inaugural final at Venturefest WM the regions most prestigious event for growth focused businesses.

The Minerva Birmingham Pitch Up competition will provide the opportunity for ambitious businesses to improve your ability to win investment while simultaneously boosting your business's profile.

Over the last 5 years, the competition was created and delivered by the Centre for Growth at Aston University, Bizzlnn at the University of Birmingham and Minerva at the University of Warwick Science Park. Over this period, we have put over 125 entrepreneurs directly in front of investors and helped bring over £3,000,000 of investments to the region's small businesses.

The competition begins with pitch preparation, helping to refine your investment pitch. Judging rounds follow, where you pitch directly to a panel of investors, receiving valuable feedback on your presentation. Then comes the public final, hosted at Venturefest West Midlands, where the best business pitches compete in front of a live audience of investors and entrepreneurs to win the Best Pitch Award.

As a result of Covid-19, details of the final competition and programme delivery will follow. To receive further update or express your interest, please apply below. 

For ambitious entrepreneurs, this is an opportunity to:

speakTaking part in Pitch Up is a great opportunity to grow.

Not only will you be putting yourself in front of an audience of investors looking for businesses to back, you will be developing your ability to compose and deliver a pitch that is both engaging and appealing.

There are other benefits too improve self-confidence, skills and networks that can help further your business in the future.


 

Find out more

Do you want to:

  • Perfect your investment pitch
  • Raise the profile of your business
  • Come face-to-face with investors, innovators and fellow entrepreneurs

Taking part in Pitch Up is a great opportunity to develop your skills and work on and practise your pitch deck in a safe environment. Not only will you be putting yourself in front of an audience of investors looking for businesses to back, you will be developing your ability to compose and deliver a pitch that is both engaging and appealing.

There are other benefits too improve self-confidence, skills and networks that can help further your business in the future. If you are selected through to the final you will be provided with an exhibition stand at Venturefest to showcase your company and network throughout the event.

How it works

From application to the final, the process will support you with honing your business plan, perfecting your pitch, building your confidence and getting you in front of an audience of investors who could help you realise your business potential.

Each shortlisted applicant takes part in one pitch preparation session. Then selected applicants will move on to one of the follow-up judging panels, after which carefully chosen businesses are invited to present and/or exhibit at the final.

Steve Barbour - Director of Composite Braiding
“Pitch Up is definitely a good process to go through! Hopefully, you will secure funding. Worst case you will understand what you need to do to help make yourself investable, or understand why it is really not for you. Since Pitch Up, we have secured over £1m of funding to power our business forward. As part of one of our technology collaborations, we have also won the 'Global Light Rail Technical Innovation of the Year' and have been nominated for a JEC World Innovation award (think of it as the Oscars of the composite industry)."

 

apply

Gain access to well-prepared and dynamic businesses going through rapid growth.

Investors previously involved with Pitch Up include:

Ascension Ventures, Business Angels Association, Business Growth Fund, Blue Sky Corporate Finance, Ecrin Investments, Harper Dennis Hobbs, Innovate UK, Mercia Technologies, Midven, Minerva Business Angel Network, Santander, Seven Investment management and The Syndicate Room.

 

Read what some of our past panel have to say about the competition
Andrew McCulloch - Seven Investment Management

“Any investor, entrepreneur or professional will find Pitch Up an invaluable place to find innovative ideas and opportunities to expand their network”

7IM looks after over £10bn of private client money. Their clients are an eclectic mix, from company chairman to tech entrepreneurs, family businesses to sports people, as well as charities and trusts -many of whom invest in private companies. Whilst 7IM don’t invest directly in private companies on behalf of their clients, they ensure they are closely involved in the wider business community as investors.

“The event was excellent with a good range of companies from very early stage, through to established growth businesses who need additional capital to scale-up. The pitches offered interesting opportunities for investors, as well as an opportunity for the entrepreneurs to raise the profile of their business.

”7IM looks after over £10bn of private client money. Their clients are an eclectic mix, from company chairman to tech entrepreneurs, family businesses to sports people, as well as charities and trusts -many of whom invest in private companies. Whilst 7IM don’t invest directly in private companies on behalf of their clients, they ensure they are closely involved in the wider business community as investors.

“The event was excellent with a good range of companies from very early stage, through to established growth businesses who need additional capital to scale-up. The pitches offered interesting opportunities for investors, as well as an opportunity for the entrepreneurs to raise the profile of their business.”

Brendan Watts - Ecrin Investments Ltd
“As well as watching the pitches, I really liked the opportunity meet all the small businesses at their stands. Being able to talk to so many entrepreneurs in one spot and getting a feel for how well I think they can grow a business makes the event worthwhile.

Ecrin Investments are angel investors working with start-up and early growth phases of high-technology businesses. They bought a 3.5% stake in 2015 Early Stage winner, Roompik, helping them to hire programmers and develop Android and web based versions of their iOSapp.

Minerva Birmingham Pitch Up is delivered by:

  
                            cfg-1          science-park  minerva      uob-final       buzzinn