Startups look for investors at Dreampitch

Global Business

The largest software conference in the U.S., Dreamforce, wrapped up. Still, one of its most anticipated events was the Dreampitch, where startups vied for the attention of venture capitalists.

CGTN’s Mark Niu reports.

Dreampitch’s panel of judges included Black Eyed Peas singer and Chris Sacca – a judge on the U.S. entrepreneur competition TV show, Shark Tank.

Leif Elgethun has pitched his lighting platform startup, Retrolux, to investors more than a hundred times.

“Oh by far the most high profile and intense experience I’ve had pitching,” Leif Elgethun, founder and CEO of Retrolux, said. “One of the best things you can do is to take some time, breathe, and remember really it’s only upside. My company is the same as it was before I walked on the stage as it is right now.”

Arlo Gilbert spent at least ten hours in a small room practicing his pitch.

“You start off by pitching investors who you don’t really think you’ll really get a chance to get money from so you can make the mistakes on those early pitches,” Gilbert, co-founder and CEO of Meta SaaS said.

“I would say I pitched north of 100 investors to close a $2 million round, about a ten percent close rate.”

Sometimes a little extra sass can put you over the top. Sara Rodell, the founder of startup Loop and Tie, reminded judge Chris Sacca that he turned down Dropbox and would have the same regret if he didn’t invest in her company.

“I wish I could tell you I was thinking about my one line, but it just came out of my mouth,” Rodell said.

Loop and Tie is a platform for corporate gifting that eventually won the competition and a check for $250,000.

At other Dreamforce events, celebrity founders shared the most important trait for succeeding as an entrepreneur.

Tan Le on how her unique experience drove her startup success

Tan Le of Emotiv has a unique experience that drives some of her success. As a young child, she fled Vietnam with her family during war, and immigrated to Australia. In 1998, she was named Young Australian of the year. Her neurotech startup is now headquartered in San Francisco. CGTN’s Mark Niu sat down with Le, to find out what Emotiv is all about