Pitch@Palace, the regular entrepreneur and startup pitching event, is open for applications again, with the third and final "On Tour" event taking place next month in Belfast before "Boot Camp" in October and the final in November, taking place as, always, at St James's Palace in London.
Pitch@Palace is supported by the Duke of York, and has been running since 2014, reportedly helping more than 200 startups find success in their respective fields. Those include London-based AI firms CognitionX and Prowler.io, robotic cleaning company ZapGo, and advanced sleep tracking app Pzizz. At the final, 12 entrepreneurs chosen from the earlier rounds pitch their companies to an audience of investors, influential CEOs, government officials and members of the technology community for a total of three minutes each.
This, the tenth edition of the event, which will have a "broad technology theme," is looking for entrepreneurs or startups in the following areas:
Biotech and medical technology
Consumer technology and Internet of Things
Data management and analytics
Energy, environmental and renewables technologies
Health and wellbeing tech
Materials, substances and by-products
Media, communications and entertainment technology
Robotics, artificial intelligence and virtual reality
The Duke of York speaking at a previous Pitch@Palace event. (Image: Pitch@Palace)
Two "Pitch@Palace On Tour" heats, in Edinburgh and Wrexham, were held in July. The final On Tour heat will be in Belfast on September 21. From these heats, a total of 42 entrepreneurs will be selected to appear at the "Boot Camp" round, taking place in Cambridge on October 4. A panel of judges will select the 12 entrepreneurs who will appear at St James Palace on November 8.
The other 30 entrepreneurs from the Boot Camp will also have the chance to pitch at the final, but for only 30 seconds -- meaning they have to be concise and direct in their delivery if they want to have a chance of winning the prestigious Pitch@Palace competition, or the equally prestigious 'People's Choice' award.
There is no cash prize, but the winner takes the glory and gets the chance to network with big-time investors and CEOs of tech-oriented multinationals.
Winner or not, all 42 entrepreneurs who pitch at the final can join the Pitch@Palace alumni network, to receive ongoing support in their business endeavors.
Given the Duke of York's somewhat shady business past, however, will some entrepreneurs or startups be put off from entering? While the overall winners of the competition are able to forge links with investors or business partners, will this be enough to entice them into a potential relationship with someone who has sometimes been less than clear and transparent in his business dealings and trade transactions over the past couple of decades?
The number of applications and winners for previous Pitch@Palace events tend to suggest the opportunities afforded by winning the competition or even pitching at the final is worth the potential trade-off, but it's something worth thinking about for those considering whether or not to apply.
Applications for Pitch@Palace 10.0 close on Monday, September 10. Interested entreprenuers can find out more at the Pitch@Palace website.