Empowering the Freelance Economy

The Pitch competition is now open!

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If you are a freelancer with a big idea, a business still in the planning stages or ready to grow, this competition is designed to boost your skills, network and confidence.

The Pitch – now in its 14th year – is an independent pitching competition that “helps startups create a kick-ass pitch and gives them the platform to use it.”

The end goal is to offer new businesses the chance to be mentored and funded by top investors. This free-to-enter competition has helped UK start-ups raise tens of millions of pounds since launching in 2008. The competition is open to small businesses that have been trading for up to three years.

By taking part, you’ll have the opportunity to work with a pitching coach and pitch to industry experts and investors. The top 10 startups go on to compete on the national stage and win the chance to be mentored by leading entrepreneurs.

When do applications close?

Applications close on 31st July. The Pitch will announce the top 100 startups in August and they will attend the pitching sessions in September.

Throughout May and June, there is a free package of online learning and webinars which anybody can access. Regional semi-finals will be held in October and the final will take place in November.

How will the 2021 programme work?

The Pitch is taking everything online to create a hybrid of online and offline events. The 2021 programme includes online educational resources, invite-only online workshops and live in-person pitching events. 

In level one, businesses get access to educational content and videos to support their growth and improve their investment readiness (produced by a team in partnership with organisations including Crowdcube and Mission Ventures).

The programme consists of invite-only, targeted webinars in level two and ensures founders get the advice they need and delivers more value for our partners.

Investment-ready businesses will pitch to investors and sponsors at their semi-finals, with regional winners announced at each stage. 

The top 10 founders pitch to a room of industry-leading investors at the London finale, followed by networking and a night of celebration.

This year’s programme is supported by SageCrowdcubeSimpleWebAgora and FounderCatalyst.

“The pandemic has seen many individual’s mindset shift on their working circumstances, with many now looking to take the plunge and start their own business,” said Kirsty Waller, vice president UKI marketing at Sage.

Since launching in 2008, The Pitch has helped many start-ups, including Resolver, Latest Free Stuff and Much Better Adventures.

What’s The Pitch? And other Frequently Asked Questions

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