Nurturing Innovation and Accelerating Growth

With over two decades of experience assisting growth minded businesses, and helping them to access funding, Greenborough Management were thrilled to be invited to support the Derby City Innovation Accelerator programme.

This initiative aimed to guide businesses through the intricate process of pitching for investment, providing them with the necessary tools and knowledge to accurately position their business for investment. Lead and facilitated by Russell Copley and Michelle Davis, the programme was designed to offer comprehensive support to entrepreneurs, encompassing coaching, mentoring, workshops, and a live pitch event.

This ‘Access to Angel and Investor Networks’ programme exists to support the growth of ambitious entrepreneurs.

The live pitch event was hosted by Russell and Michelle, and took place on the 13th March 2024, at the Enterprise Centre within the University of Derby.

Through a variety of channels, the four chosen participants in this first cohort were given the opportunity to develop their skills and expand their networks within the local investor community. The cohort worked closely with the Greenborough team and were able to spend time in small groups to better understand the growth journey of their business.

Greenborough’s Role

Throughout the duration of the programme, Greenborough conducted several workshops to address key aspects of investment readiness. These workshops were purposely designed to equip participants with the knowledge and expertise needed to navigate the complexities of securing funding. Russell lead the group on sessions that included:

  • Investment Readiness
  • A Business Plan for Funding
  • Business Angels vs Crowdfunding
  • Pitching Your Business

Greenborough Management guided the delegates through understanding the nuances of equity investment, the best routes to achieve sustainable growth and helped position their business to be more ‘growth ready’. The workshops also helped the attendees understand what they would need to prepare for potential investors, to ensure their business seemed like a worthwhile investment.

Each of the workshops served as invaluable learning opportunities for participants to refine their pitching skills and fine-tune their business propositions.

The Live Pitch Final

To help candidates learn how to accurately position their business when pitching for investment in a ‘real life’ scenario, we invited a panel of 4 Angel Investors to join us for a Live Pitch Final. Each business had an opportunity to speak for 5 minutes, sharing their prepared pitch, and the investors, experienced entrepreneurs had 10 minutes to ask questions.

The question segment of the event provided each business owner with an opportunity to perfect their pitch, understanding what makes their business more enticing or interesting for investment.

The panel comprised of:

Laura Mallaburn – part of Lincolnshire Science and Innovation Park, runs Lincolnshire Business Angels Network

Paul Jenkinson – Scaleup Director on the Innovate UK EDGE Scaleup Programme

Kirsty Sisson – Investor, Born Limitless Ltd

Sandy Reid – Fund Principal at Mercia Asset Management

Our selected panellists generously shared their time and expertise to provide candidates with constructive feedback and valuable insights that they can take with them throughout the next steps of their business.

Investment ready businesses

The following businesses were invited to pitch to our panel:

  • DS-Performance – David Smith – a former Olympic Athlete who is developing an elite sports training app.
  • Global Sports Podcast Network – Ken Davies and Nick Britten – A weekly 30 minute podcast for each of the Premier League football clubs.
  • Chap in the Box Studios – Mimi and Tim Tucker – A business that is creating a series of “edutainment” animations for pre-school children to make their screen time “nutritious”
  • Plaudeo – Dave Whittles – An acoustic app that gives “in stadium” audio experiences through a smart phone for people watching online.

Each business made their 5 minute to pitch to the panel and an invited audience. The angel investor panel asked numerous, relevant and probing questions during their allocated 10 minute slot. This interactive exchange provided invaluable insights for both the presenting business and audience members, enriching the candidates learning experiences.

The evening concluded with a networking buffet, which provided participants with a unique opportunity to connect with the investor network and fellow entrepreneurs. For some businesses, this is a key time to have further conversations with entrepreneurs and investors that enjoyed their pitch. This informal setting encouraged meaningful conversations, collaboration between the cohort, and the exchange of ideas.

Greenborough Management would like extend our congratulations to all the participants for their hard work and dedication, and we look forward to witnessing their continued success on their entrepreneurial journeys.

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