Guidelines and Judging Criteria
(1) Business Description – details of the business and what it does.
Judging: How well was the concept explained? Does it seem reasonable and generally appear to make sense? Do you believe the concept is new, sustainable, and scalable?
(2) Market Analysis – characteristics of the market and description of customers.
Judging: Do you believe there is a genuine need for this product or service? Has the target market been well defined? Is the market large and growing? What about the consumers’ willingness to pay?
(3) Product or Service Analysis – the specifics of your product or service.
Judging: Has the product or service been clearly described? Does it appear feasible? Is it protected in any way, or can it be easily duplicated? Are there many close substitutes?
(4) Competition – identify current and potential competitors.
Judging: Were the current and potential competitors adequately identified? Was the likely competitive response considered? Have the firm’s competitive strengths and weaknesses been realistically analyzed?
(5) Marketing Strategy – how sales will be achieved.
Judging: Is there a realistic marketing plan? Has the price, promotion, product, and distribution sales mix been adequately addressed? Are sufficient resources being allocated for marketing?
(6) Operations – how the product or service will be produced.
Judging Do they have, or can likely secure, the resources required for production? Will they be able to operate competitively and grow?
(7) Management – An assessment of the entrepreneur and management team.
Judging: Do they have the experience and skills required for operations? Is there a depth and breadth of capabilities? Will they be able to grow with the organization and attract new talent?
(8) Finances – An overview of the required resources and economics of the venture.
Judging: Is there a compelling business model? Were the resources required to get started addressed? Was a breakeven analysis presented? Are the financial projections reasonable? Does there appear to be prospects for long term profitability?
(9) An investment proposal – the terms and conditions offered to investors.
Judging: Were the funding needs sufficiently explained? Did the presenter clearly describe what is being offered to potential investors and the anticipated returns? Has a realistic valuation been calculated and a feasible exit strategy presented?
(10) The presentation itself – Overall effectiveness of the actual presentation.
Judging: Did the presenter engage the audience and held their attention; speak with authority and confidence; and allocate their allotted time in an efficient and effective manner?
In addition to considering the ten points outlined in the New Business Venture Pitch Guidelines, Social Ventures should specifically address the following seven criteria:
(1) Assessing the need: does the proposed venture address a significant and pressing social problem?
(2) Well-defined target: does the proposed venture adequately describe the problem it addresses and define the parameters within which it plans to operate?
(3) Matching skills and objectives: does the entrepreneurial team demonstrate the skills and experience required to translate the plan into action?
(4) Creativity: does the proposal approach the social problem in a creative, exciting, and dynamic way?
(5) Feasibility: does the initiative aspire towards realistic and achievable goals, while thinking big? How effectively can it be implemented?
(6) Sustainability: does the proposed venture include adequate strategies for fundraising and income generation? Does it consider the different dimensions of financial and social sustainability in a conscientious manner?
(7) Social impact: how will the implementation of this social venture benefit the community and the multiple stakeholders involved?
Whether pitching a New Business Concept or a Social Venture, try to address the following ten big questions as completely as possible. Remember, you should not simply talk about a general idea (those are "a dime a dozen"), rather, try to present a complete business concept and demonstrate that you can actually implement it.
- 1. What's the PROBLEM?
- 2. What's your SOLUTION?
- 3. How large is the MARKET?
- 4. Who is the COMPETITION?
- 5. What makes you so SPECIAL?
- 6. What's your ECONOMIC MODEL?
- 7. How exactly will you achieve SALES?
- 8. Have you assembled a qualified TEAM?
- 9. How will you secure required RESOURCES?
- 10. What are you proposing for an INVESTMENT?