November 6, 2014

Entrepreneurs Break Out Their Best Pitches at Babson

The Arthur M. Blank Center for Entrepreneurship held their 15th Annual Rocket Pitch yesterday afternoon. 

As part of the many entrepreneurship programs and initiatives within Babson, Rocket Pitch is an annual event where Babson (students and alumni), Olin Engineering and Wellesley College student entrepreneurs are invited to pitch their business ideas to a large audience of students, faculty, entrepreneurs, investors, and service providers. 

Nearly 100 entrepreneurs are given three minutes to quickly deliver the critical differentiating elements of their business ideas.

These startups are at all different stages - some still validating their concept and looking for advice or mentors, while others such as HigherMe are making their pitch and opening their $1M seed round! 

Alcohol-themed startups were aplenty, including Three-legged Crow Brewing, U-Brew and Buster Brewing, a brewery/restaurant set for the Worcester area. 

A couple others that stand out:
WineKick: provides all-in-one digital marketing of wine and craft beer for liquor stores, distributors, and producers (wineries/breweries). The centerpiece of the marketing services is the Wine Sidekick kiosk and mobile app that recommends a certain beer or wine based on customer preference.

Flaming Leprechaun: a full line of Irish Spirits made in Ireland with a genuine emphasis on quality, tradition, and fun.  

Mobile and Social had a strong presence as well. Among them were
Frucket: the bucket-list app that provides a platform for groups of friends to collaboratively create, plan, and execute their shared bucket list.

BudEase: mobile app based platform that connects students within a college or university, who want to do similar activities. an app tackling the problem of making plans with friends in an ever busier world.


Mento (above right): allows users to take advantage of both cameras, front and back, on an iPhone to create a unique 360 moment.

Another mobile/social app, founded by MBA student, Rob Savitsky, was Warn My Friends, which allows anyone to warn a friend during a time when a physical interruption might seem awkward.         


I asked Savitsy about his experience with Rocket Pitch:

"Rocket Pitch was an incredible experience for me. While I’d had a rough idea of my venture concept for Warn My Friends! for awhile, this event pushed me to take the next step to do some real hard research on the viability of my idea... getting myself to think about my app not only as a product, but as a business, and to make a call to action. In my case, I’m at a very early-stage of building WMF, and my CTA was for feedback from industry experts/potential users and to find developers... As a founder, I was pleased with the response I received, and I’m incredibly excited to continue taking action and bring WMF to the next level!" (Hear Rob’s pitch here at the 1:50:12 mark)

A couple other interesting startups were Quick Key Mobile, which turns a teacher’s phone into a scanner and eliminates hand-grading of assessments and TagMuse, a an online platform (website + mobile apps) dedicated to the promotion of ‘independent music - both audio and video’.         

We’ve only hit on a fraction of the startups from Rocket Pitch, but you can check out each company profile, including their stage, ask and value proposition online here. You can also see the action on Twitter through Babson’s Tagboard.

Josh Boyle is Director of Community & Marketing, VentureFizz.  You can follow him on Twitter @jb_sid
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