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Start-Up Fundraising: How to Design Investor Pitch Decks

To promote their firm to potential angel investors or venture capitalists, startups typically put up what is known as a “pitch deck.” 

The pitch deck comprises fifteen to twenty slides and is delivered as a PowerPoint presentation. 

Its purpose is to promote the goods, technology, and team behind the firm to potential investors.

Obtaining funding from financial backers is a challenging and time-consuming process. 

As a result, a firm needs to develop a fantastic investor pitch deck by expressing a captivating and fascinating narrative.

Investor Pitch Decks, Both Dos and Don’ts:

When designing their investor presentation decks, many entrepreneurs make several blunders that may be avoided. 

Remember the following guidelines, which include both things you should and should not do.

How to proceed:

  • Be sure to add the following phrase in the bottom left corner of the cover page of the pitch deck: “Confidential and Proprietary.” (c) by [Name of Company] copyright reserved. 
  • “No Reproduction Without Permission.”
  • Do your best to persuade the audience why the market potential is so great.
  • Make sure to incorporate visuals and pictures that are appealing to the eye.
  • Before meeting with potential investors, email them the pitch deck in PDF format in advance. 
  • Refrain from imposing on the investor the requirement that they get it through Google Docs, Dropbox, or any other online service; doing so will only create an obstacle in the way of their reading it.
  • Make it a point to include a live demonstration of your wares as part of the in-person presentation you’ll be giving.
  • Give a fascinating, memorable, captivating tale to listen to and demonstrate your enthusiasm for the company.
  • Do demonstrate that you have more than a concept and gained early traction in building the product, acquiring consumers, or signing up partners. Do this by showing that you have.
  • Make sure you have a memorable soundbite ready for potential investors.
  • Keep the font size, color, and header title style the same across all slides.
Image courtesy of eu-startups

It Should Not be Done:

Maintain the length of the pitch deck at no more than 15–20 slides (investors have limited attention spans). 

If you believe additional material is required, consider including it as an appendix.

  • Reduce the number of slides that include a lot of text.
  • Provide sufficient financial information since it will be possible to supply this information in a follow-up.
  • Avoid attempting to cover everything in the pitch deck. When you make your presentation in person, you’ll have the chance to add new material and emphasize the most critical points.
  • Avoid using excessive jargon or acronyms since the investor may need help to grasp what you are saying.
  • Be careful not to minimize or gloss over the threat posed by the other competitors.
  • Make sure that your pitch deck does not have an outdated appearance. 
  • On the front page, you do not want to include a date many months out of date. 
  • And you want to exclude any facts or data in the presentation about your company that appear old or relevant.
  • If you want your pitch desk to have a more professional appearance, you should avoid having a lousy layout, awful graphics, or a low-quality “look and feel.” 
  • Instead, it would be best if you considered employing a graphic designer.

Which Slides Are the Most Important to Include in Your Presentation to Potential Investors?

You want your investor presentation deck to contain the following themes, more or less in the order shown below, and with names similar to those presented here:

1. The Slide from the Presentation Deck titled “Company Overview.”

The page that comes after the cover page should be titled “Company Overview.” 

  • On this page, you should provide a summary of your company, including the problem it solves, where you are located, the experience of the management team, and any significant traction that has already been established.
  • The reader should be drawn in and persuaded that your business has the potential to become very successful by the time they reach the company summary page.
Image courtesy of

2. This Slide of the Pitch Deck is titled “Mission/Vision.”

You should provide a brief overview of the company’s goal and vision in this slide. The following are some instances of missions:

  • “We want to fill the holes in corporate data storage that leave organizations open to cybersecurity risks.”
  • “If you’re a millennial and you want to invest in the stock market, we are the mobile option for you.”
  • “We are the on-demand answer for home cleaners that is comparable to Uber.”

The term “vision” may refer to a goal you believe you can achieve, such as “Our vision is to become the premier e-commerce firm for those healing from injuries.”

Consider this slide the engaging elevator pitch that you will deliver in the next 15 seconds.

3. Slide of the Pitch Deck is titled “The Team.”

Many people who invest their money feel that the people working for a firm are essential in deciding whether to invest. Typical content for the slide titled “The Team” is as follows:

  • Photographs of the most important members of the squad
  • Members of the squad and their titles
  • A concise review of the team’s previous work experience demonstrating domain knowledge and necessary expertise
  • Members of the Board, in addition to Advisors and Consultants (sometimes included in this slide to bolster credibility)
Image courtesy of slidebazaar

4. Slide of the Pitch Deck is titled “The Problem.”

You have to outline the issue or the need that your business is addressing, containing the following points:

  • How significant is the problem?
  • Why is it necessary to do so?
  • Whose benefit would it be if you solved this problem?
  • Who exactly are the prospective clients?
Image courtesy of basetemplates

5. Slide of the Pitch Deck is titled “The Solution.”

Since the preceding slide explained the issue, the next slide in your investor pitch deck should be titled “The Solution.” 

This slide should explain your suggested solution and why it is superior to other alternatives currently available on the market; due to the possibility of duplication, this deck and the pitch deck’s slide titled “Product” need to be carefully synchronized with one another.

Image courtesy of slideteam

6. The Slide titled “Product”:

You are required to clearly describe what the product or service that your business offers consists of and why it is unique. 

Therefore, the slide titled “The Product” of your pitch deck should answer the following questions:

  • What sets this product apart from others in its category?
  • Why do people who use the product care about it?
  • Which significant product milestones have been reached?
  • What are the primary characteristics that set this product apart from its competitors?
  • What are other product enhancements in the works for future development?

Images, movies, and other forms of visual media may be helpful; don’t rely only on in-depth textual explanations.

7. Slide titled “Market Opportunity”:

Investors seek to put their money into significant prospects with vast potential customer bases. On the slide titled “Market Opportunity,” you should include the following:

  • Identify the market that you are competing in.
  • Specify the size of the market in terms of dollars.
  • Include graphs that demonstrate that your organization will be addressing a significant portion of the market that can be addressed.
Image courtesy of powerslides

8. Slide of the Pitch Deck is titled “Customers.”

A slide titled “Clients” may be impactful and give credibility to the presentation if the organization already has early customers. 

This slide will often show the logos of recognizable clients who have done business with the company.

9. The Slide of the Pitch Deck is titled “The Technology.”

Investors will be particularly interested in the technology that underpins your business (both existing and in development). 

The following points may be brought up on this slide of the investor presentation deck:

  • The fundamental technological support structure
  • The corporation has significant intellectual property rights (patents, patents pending, copyrights, trademarks, domain names)
  • Exactly why the technology is or will be more advanced
  • Reasons why a rival company will have a hard time duplicating the technology

10. The Slide titled “Competition”:

The presence of the company’s rivals will continue to be a concern for investors. Your PowerPoint titled “Competition” should be prepared to answer the following questions:

  • Who are the other businesses that this one competes with?
  • What sets your firm apart from the competition and makes it successful?
  • What are the primary characteristics that set your company apart from your rivals?

You must demonstrate an awareness of the competitive environment and be ready to answer inquiries about your rivals and other businesses in the industry. 

The investor may conclude that you need to comprehend the market more if you lack familiarity with your industry rivals.

Image courtesy of SlideTeam

11. Slide titled “Traction”:

A firm that has succeeded in gaining early traction in one form or another will be regarded favorably. 

Sometimes, but not usually, a slide labeled “Traction” will be included in the pitch deck. 

Other times, the progress or traction of the firm will merely be scattered among the other slides. 

The following are some topics that may be covered using the “Traction” slide:

  • What kind of early traction has the firm gained (in terms of revenue, visitors to the company website, app downloads, growth metrics, and other relevant indicators, if applicable)?
  • Which of the planned strategic alliances has been completed?
  • How can the initial traction be increased more quickly?
  • Public attention and acclaim
  • Testimonials

12. The Slide of the Pitch Deck is titled “The Business Model.”

The investors will be interested in learning about your company’s concept. Therefore, this slide may cover essential concerns such as:

  • Where do you get your money from?
  • What kind of price model are we looking at?
  • What exactly is a client’s value to a business over time?
  • How many new customers will be acquired, and what are the associated costs?
Image courtesy ofSketchBubble

13. This Pitch Deck Slide is titled “Marketing Plan.”

You will need an effective marketing strategy to bring in clients or users, regardless of how excellent your product is in this regard. 

The following topics may be discussed on the “Marketing Plan” slide of the pitch deck:

  • Which primary marketing platforms are you planning to use, such as paid search, social media, television, radio, email marketing, and so on?
  • What early accomplishments have you had, and which channels have been successful for you?
  • What are the early expenses associated with acquiring a customer on a per-customer basis (and, in conjunction with this question, what is the estimated lifetime value of a client)?
  • What kind of public relations will you be using?
  • What kind of early publicity or buzz have you received?

14. This Slide of the Pitch Deck is titled “Financials.”

Investors will want a solid understanding of the company’s present financial standing and projected “burn” rate for the foreseeable future (monthly or yearly cash loss while the company is developing and marketing its product).

Sometimes, the following will be shown on the slide titled “Financials”:

  • Budget projections over the next several years
  • Unit economics
  • Rate of burning
  • Metrics that are essential to the operation of the firm (such as annual recurring revenue)
  • Combined amounts of income and expenditures
  • EBITDA
  • Important presumptions

Be sure that your estimates are not too optimistic; you do not want potential investors to quickly challenge your projections because they are either implausible or downright ridiculous. 

Be careful not to fall into the trap of declaring that you will raise revenues by ten times in a single year while simultaneously only increasing sales and marketing expenditures by two times.

Image courtesy of basetemplates

15. The slide of the pitch deck titled “The Ask.”

You should include a slide at the conclusion named “The Ask.” On this slide, you should address the following points:

  • How much money are you looking to raise (you may provide a range; for example, “we are looking to raise between $2 and $3 million in financing”)?
  • How long do you anticipate the finance will be in place, somewhere between 15 and 18 months?
  • Which benchmarks will the finance allow you to accomplish in the foreseeable future?
  • What would be the primary purpose for which you will put the money you make from the investment? 
  • Who are your current investors, if any? (highlighting any well-known investors)

6 Business Proposal Decks from Big Energy Companies:

The energy sector is one of the businesses that is expanding at the quickest rate all across the globe.

Over two billion people worldwide still do not have access to electricity, and over one billion use open charcoal fires to cook and heat their houses.

Numerous new energy sector businesses are regularly springing up to provide novel technological solutions to these issues.

We have gathered six pitch decks from various new energy firms.

1) Tesla

Tesla Motors specializes in developing an extensive lineup of electric vehicles, ranging from high-performance sports cars to comfortable sedans for families.

Specifics on the new venture:

  • Business model: E-commerce
  • Customer: B2C

Specifics of the pitch deck are as follows:

  • Year: 2011
  • Round: Late Stage
  • Total amount raised: $192 Million
  • Investor: Corporate
Image courtesy of SlideTeam

2) BlaBlaCar

BlaBlaCar is a platform for long-distance ride-sharing that connects passengers with other travelers so that they may split the expenses of their trips together.

Specifics on the new venture:

  • The marketplace as a paradigm for doing business
  • Customer: C2C

Specifics of the pitch deck are as follows:

  • Year: 2016
  • Round: Late Stage
  • The total amount collected was €21 Million.
  • Investor: Corporate, Venture Capitalist

3) Ohmconnect

Ohmconnect is a smart grid technology that is based on software, and it improves the effectiveness as well as the dependability of the power infrastructure. 

When the grid is experiencing peak loads, it sends instructions to software-enabled devices to direct them to cut down their demand.

Specifics on the new venture:

  • Business model: SaaS
  • Customer: B2C

Specifics of the pitch deck are as follows:

  • Year: 2018
  • Round: Series B
  • The total amount collected: $8.5M
  • Investor: VC, Angel Investors

4) Mero Technologies

Mero Technologies is an analytics platform that assists property managers in measuring the performance of their buildings and making improvements to that performance.

Specifics on the new venture:

  • Business model: SaaS
  • Customer: B2C

Specifics of the pitch deck are as follows:

  • Year: 2020
  • Round: Pre-Seed
  • The total amount collected: $800 000
  • Investor: No Data Available

5) Rovilus

Rovilus creates battery packs built to last and is trustworthy for use in industrial settings.

Specifics on the new venture:

  • Other types of business models
  • Customer: B2B

Specifics of the pitch deck are as follows:

  • Year: 2019
  • Round: Pre-Seed
  • The amount raised was $150,000.
  • Investor: VC

6) GridCure

GridCure is a data-driven firm that targets the worldwide electrical power utility market to simplify energy conservation initiatives.

Specifics on the new venture:

  • Business model: SaaS
  • Customer: B2B

Specifics of the pitch deck are as follows:

  • Year: 2014
  • Round: Seed
  • The amount raised was $95,000.
  • Investor: No Data Available

Conclusion:

By putting together a compelling investor pitch deck, your chances of securing funding for your business might be significantly improved. 

However, you must ensure that the tale is captivating and engaging to the audience. You are obligated to discuss the themes that investors anticipate seeing discussed.

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