BNT is an American TV channel specialising in business news. Currently, it has a weekly programme called Make your pitch. In the programme, entrepreneurs of any age can make a pitch (a persuasive sales presentation) to two wealthy business people (tycoons) asking for money to help them develop a business idea, product or service. If the tycoons think the idea will be profitable, they invest some of their own money in the project. However, they usually ask for a large stake in the entrepreneurs' business in return for their investment.
Listen to an entrepreneur ending a presentation of the product, a storage device, that he and his partner want the tycoons to invest in. Tick the correct statements.
1 The product can be adapted to any space.
2 It can be used to store different kinds of household objects.
3 It looks im pressive.
4 It can only be used once.
5 The entrepreneurs want the tycoons to invest €200,OOO in their business.
6 If the tycoons accept the entrepreneurs' offer, they will end up owning 20% of the business.
Listen to the questions and answers following the entrepreneurs' pitch. In groups, discuss these questions.
If you were one of the tycoons, what other questions would you ask the entrepreneurs before negotiating a stake in their company?2
Do you think you would invest in this product? Why? / Why not?3
If you decided to invest, what stake in the business would you ask for?4
Apart from investing money, how else could you add value to their business? For example, personal qualities? business experience?
In tonight's programme, there will be four pitches to the tycoons by entrepreneurs.
1 100 sculptures of famous people 2 New Formula XF anti·wrinkle cream
3 Alfresh lunch box with cooler 4 On·the·Spot car cleaning
The tycoons listen to a short pitch (1-2 minutes) from each of the entrepreneurs. Then they ask questions to get additional information.
Finally, they decide whether or not they will invest in the project, and on what terms.
1- Work in groups of four. Take turns playing the roles of tycoons and entrepreneurs.
Entrepreneurs: Choose one of the following products
• Sculptures of famous people
• Alfresh lunch box with cooler
• New Formula XF anti·wrinkle cream
• On·the·Spot car cleaning
2 Work as one group. Discuss all four projects. Rank them according
to how good an investment they are for the tycoons (1 excellent
investment, 4 poor investment). If you can't agree, take a vote.