Week 12 & Demo Day
Week 12 started off focusing on Demo Day, with a visit to the chosen location for the main event of the program: the Soho House. Only the CEOs were allowed to go, along with the Techstars Berlin associates and directors. Our founders got to see the room they were going to present in, to get an idea of the space. After seeing the room, they were able to visualize the presentation and consequently prepare for it better.
Pitch practice sessions continued during the course of the week and the last KPI session was completed on Friday. Other than that this week was filled with two events: the AWS night out on Wednesday and the Techstars second Thursday. In this last event, we were joined by the new cohorts of the Metro/Target accelerator, who just started their program this week, just as this journey is coming to an end.
The demo day week was a short one. With the big day being on a Thursday, there were only 3 days left, during which there were two official rehearsals, where the founders got to practice their pitches in front of the whole cohort. This way, they not only got feedback from their peers, but also got to exercise telling their pitch in front of a crowd. Worth a mention is that two of our colleagues from GoSave found themselves in an elevator with Hugh Jackman (yes, Mr. Wolverine in the flesh,) who was in town for a show.
The Demo Day of this Techstars Berlin experience followed a different schedule than the traditional Techstars demo day. The event was divided into two parts and our CEO had to give two presentations to two different groups: one in the morning and one in the afternoon. The location for this celebratory event was the Soho House in Berlin, a glorious hotel which reflected the importance of this event. The day started early in the morning, as we had to be at the location between 7 and 7.30am. The first presentation was set for 9.00am and the audience, composed of a mix of investors, mentors and potential clients, was welcome to join us for breakfast at 8 00. After a few conversations, the show started. A short video kicked things off and was followed by a speech by Jennifer Cabala, VP of Community at Techstars, who introduced Techstars Berlin’s managing director Jag Singh.
It was then the startups’ turn. The pitches for each company were allowed to be only 4 minutes long, also in this aspect differing from the standard Techstars format. Hiveonline broke the ice, followed by Zoi Meet, Cassiopeia, eQuoo, Missfits, Anytype, Nifty Learning, Eversend, MEDIjobs and GoSave. All of them produced excellent attention-grabbing pitches. After the end of the presentations, everyone was invited to head to the networking area, where each startup had its own demo booth, which they invited everyone to go visit at the end of their pitches, in order to show them the product they talked about and hopefully set up a meeting. After an hour of networking, the first group left and there was some time to rest and prepare for the second group and the second pitch.
The afternoon section of the event was by far the most crowded and investor-filled. The audience arrived at 12 00 and was served a buffet lunch along with the startups. At 1 00 pm the presentations started again, repeating what had happened in the morning, only Jag Singh’s speech was slightly longer, because the second time marked the real end of the program. Once again, every CEO had a great delivery and hopefully incited interest in some investors. The pitches were followed by another networking moment and a collective cheers to the end of the program.
The day ended around 16.30 and most of us headed home to recharge for a few minutes and get some food before heading to the final Techstars party. We were scheduled to meet at Tarantino’s, which was rented out by Techstars for the evening, at 19.00, even though most of us showed up around 20.00. It was a great final celebration of these three months and a last get together of the whole cohort.
These last three months have been intense, challenging, exciting and demanding for all of the 10 amazing startups that were selected and of course for everyone involved in the organization of it all. Friendships and connections were made, so we are excited to see what all of the startups will achieve in the future and we wish everyone the best of luck in the future and all the success in reaching the goals they are trying to achieve.