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Washington DC Autumn 2013
Sessions: 2013-11-19 - 2014-03-04
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Why You Should Never Pay to Pitch, by Sajad Ghanizada
Founder Insight gives you feedback from the startup trenches.
In this post from his blog, Sajad Ghanizada shares critical advice for new entrepreneurs: Don't pay to pitch. Ever. He says, "One of the best pieces of advice I’ve received from a mentor within my network was, 'If you can’t get accepted to pitch at a free event…there is probably a legitimate reason that reputable venues have passed you by and it isn’t because you haven’t slipped them enough cash".
Below, Don’t Pay To Pitch. Ever. has been republished;
"As a first time entrepreneur, I find myself making mistakes all the time and seeking advice often (but not enough).
One of the best pieces of advice I’ve received from a mentor within my network was, “If you can’t get accepted to pitch at a free event…there is probably a legitimate reason that reputable venues have passed you by and it isn’t because you haven’t slipped them enough cash.”
He’s right on the mark. I get invited to pitch events maybe once a month throughout the east coast, most of them cost a moderate $50-75 which I assume is to cover costs.
But once in a while, I receive an email for an event that seems more like a Nigerian 419 scam than a selective pitch event. Angel Venture Forum in the Mid-Atlantic region stands out as the most costly of the pay-to-pitch schemes. Apply and if you’re selected to present, for a cool $1,500 you can pitch 30 angel investors from 24 groups. No guarantee that they’re actively looking to invest.
You should easily be able to find a warm introduction to any of these 30 investors outside of AVF. If you can’t find an introduction, can’t get a meeting or an investment, don’t think that throwing away $1,500 is going to change any of that.
I don’t know of any events like this on the west coast but I would love to hear from you if you’ve had any success at a pay to pitch event.
For those who’ve shelled out the money and received nothing, I can be a shoulder to cry on. Reach out to me."