sharktank

ABC’s ‘Shark Tank’ billionaires Barbara Corcoran, Daymond John and Mark Cuban will be in town come the 24th for the Global Entrepreneurship Summit. The three are self made billionaires who, on their show, which also airs on NTV, listen to ideas from upcoming investors and decide on whether to pump money into them.  It will be the first time for the summit to be held in Sub Saharan Africa. Previously, it has been held in Turkey, UAE, Malaysia and Morocco and it basically serves to bring together entrepreneurs at all stages of business development, business leaders, mentors, and high-level government officials.

The three are estimated to have an estimated net worth of $3.9 billion from their various investments and apart from their fortunes, they are also authors and motivational speakers. Given their propensity for budding entrepreneurs, they will definitely be scouring for investment opportunities in Kenya and this are tips on how to make the perfect pitch;

1.       Put feeling into your pitch- You have to make your pitch be yours, love it and own it. Show that it is your idea and you are passionate about its achievement, that you would go miles to have it enacted. Don’t be that guy who has an ambitious idea but lacks the drive to achieve it.

2.       Story behind the story- Stories are key. Every idea has many stories behind it. Inmvestors know this so they delve into that. Have the story on how you came up with your idea, what you’ve done so far, the challenges you’ve met and how many people are fighting over your product. Convince the investor that you have dwelled on your idea long enough but make sure you only present the essentials and not irrelevant details.

3.       First impression- This is usually seals or breaks the deal. An investor is marked by confidence. You do not want to be pitching an idea with a shaky voice. You will have already nullified it. You should ooze aplomb but don’t be cocky while at it. Don’t be intimidated by the investor, act normal and act smart. Make the first 15 seconds count.

4.       Prepare yourself- Investors first invest in the entrepreneur, not the idea. It is imperative that the investor is impressed by your traits. They need to know that you are thoughtful, fast, efficient and can sustain the project over a long period of time.

5.       Have a plan B- Investors know that after five years or so, one gets bored with one company thus they are very interested in your exit strategy. They need to know how you have planned it out. Whether you will sell your shares, go public or franchise. Your exit strategy matters a lot as they judge your investor insight from it.

When you are making a pitch, you are a salesman. Make that sale!

JOE BLACK