The excitement is building up as our Innovators are now one step closer to the Final Showdown.
36 Innovators made their presentations at the Quarterfinals, and 28 have been selected to pitch at the Semifinals on October 4. Meet our Semifinalists.
The judges at each of the quarterfinal’s track (Students, Nonprofits, and For-Profits) were presented with a wide range of ideas by enthusiastic social entrepreneurs, all raring to go after the intensive coaching they had received from their coaches/mentors.
“I think the pitches were amazing. There is so much variety. People are extremely passionate and knowledgeable. And every idea is excellent, truly,” said Mikaela Kiner. Mikaela volunteered to be a coach and a judge for SVP Fast Pitch 2016 because she was interested in seeing what people were doing new and different in the social space.
The Innovators in the Nonprofits track expressed mixed emotion about their pitches. While Nicola Tsong of Yoga Behind Bars said: “I felt like I got the point [across] of what yoga can really do for prisoners and how it can actually impact on a much larger system-wide scale change,”; Brittany Kirk of Ventures thought she spoke a little fast: “I would calm it down a little and [also] my timing was off in a couple of places. It slipped into the next slide, so I would work on that a little.”
In the For-Profit track, the pitches were focused on the 3 I’s – Impactful, Inspiring and Investable. Peter Nitze, Chair of the Impact Group elaborates on them here .
Speaking about the pitches he heard, Nikesh (Nikki) Parekh, who was a judge, said, “Most of the pitches that we had, the societal impact was incredibly high – all these very interesting problems that people are solving using the market and the for-profit mechanism to build really interesting businesses that help people.”
Quarterfinalist Virginia Emery, the founder of Beta Hatch Inc. shared, “Agriculture and food are really a social business. The problems we are solving are everyday problems that have these huge impacts globally. It’s, I think, a good fit for the mission of this competition.”
The student quarterfinalists stood out for their passion and commitment to their cause. The youngsters delivered their pitches with an assurance that was inspiring. When Sarah Tarta of Kare was asked what she thought she had done well, she responded: “Just getting up there and being confident enough to tell everyone about my business.”
The next step for the Innovators is practicing and further refining their pitches to impress the judges even more. The Semifinals will be held at Columbia Towers on October 4, and are hosted by Seed IP.
Some of our Innovators and Judges at the Quarterfinals: