Christoph Fahle
March 20, 2012

The Perfect Pitch: A How-to Guide

By now, you and your startup team may already be underway with your one-pagers, soon to be sent to our betapitch jury, and you may be wondering just how you can improve your chances of making it into the top-10 and, eventually, the winning spot.

By now, you and your startup team may already be underway with your one-pagers, soon to be sent to our betapitch jury, and you may be wondering just how you can improve your chances of making it into the top-10 and, eventually, the winning spot.

Our jury will soon be swamped with one-pagers from all sorts of startups. From this mess of papers, 10 of the best will be chosen to pitch at betapitch on May 3rd.

Your applications will be evaluated on 4 criteria: your business model, your team, the purpose of your startup, and, finally, your originality and innovativeness.

Naturally, these criteria will also apply to your pitch, should you be nominated as a finalist.

Your startup should not only have a cool idea and catchy slogan, but should also be based on a solid business model – one that ensures your startup can remain functional and continue to receive revenue in the long term. That is why we chose the Business Model Canvas by Osterwalder and Pigneur as the basis for our application process (meaning, your one pager should be based on this). By using the business model canvas you should be able to develop a fairly complete idea of your business model, that others can grasp easily. You can download the canvas here.

Behind nearly every successful startup company is a well-rounded team, bringing together diverse skill-sets and levels of expertise, and working towards a common goal. 

Of course, you want to be doing all of this for a reason. It would be a shame to develop great business model and assemble a talented team, only to waste all of that on an idea that neither concerns nor interests anyone else. Your startup should address an existing need in real life, taking on a significance in the lives of others, and should do so in a way that is creative, innovative, and that benefits both you as a business, as well as your target market.

Lastly, your startup should be based on your own idea, and executed as originally and innovatively as possible. Drawing inspiration from existing startups is one thing, simply aping them is another. Needless to say, if you are caught simply renaming and rebranding an already-existing startup, your application will not even be considered: betapitch is proud to be a copycat-free zone.

So you’ve been nominated as a finalist. The challenge is now to present your idea in a way that captures the attention and interest of our judges. Your originality, purpose, structure, and plan must shine through in this as well – try to think of something that stands out; something other than the standard corporate presentation. For eye-catching, yet effective presentations, we suggest making use of one of the many great online resources out there, such as Prezi, or Salon.io. Your team will have 5 minutes to present your idea, and 5 minutes to answer any questions from either the jury or the audience.

Learn more about how to succeed at your startup pitch competition.

With all of this in mind, we wish you and your teams the best of luck, and we look forward to receiving your applications until April 20 at 23:59 (GMT+1). Please note that applications and presentations must be in English!

We will then let you know whether or not your team has been selected until April 26, and send you some additional information about the pitch. Teams selected as finalists are strongly encouraged to attend a Pitch Training Session on Wednesday, May 2.

Click here to find more insightful articles like this! 

Working for Lufthansa back in 2002, Joachim (CEO & founder @ Jolocom) had the idea to develop a better system for companies to swap data internally and for people to share their data with companies. Back in 2002, the resistance to open networks and communication was strong. However, just a few years later, social media and blockchain changed the rules of the game, which led to the founding of Jolocom in 2014. (Read the whole story here


Photo by Lea GK

Ellie joined the Jolocom team in the fall last year. She’s part of the content team and is responsible for communications and online platforms maintenance. 

Volker is currently studying IT-Systems Engineering at HPI, working on his master thesis with Jolocom. He joined the software development team in March this year and has previously worked from betahaus for another startup company.

With two locations in the heart of the city, betahaus l Sofia is a home of some of the most successful Bulgarian startups and is one of the leading innovation hubs in Sofia. Their main space is located just two minutes on foot from Sofia University and the second one stands right at the central Slaveykov Sqaure and has a beautiful view over the city.

As all of our locations, its pet and bicycle friendly and offers the same comfy and relaxed atmosphere you've come to expect from betahaus. Identical to our space, betahaus | Sofia uses glass doors for its team rooms, to build transparency and inclusion.

betahaus | Sofia @ Shipka 6

betahaus | Sofia @ Shipka 6

betahaus | Sofia is spread across 1800 q.m. divided into 2 separate spaces. Shipka 6 is 1300qm and takes over the entire 3rd floor of the UBA – Union of the Bulgarian Artists. Slaveykov Square is placed on the roof top of another historical building in Sofia. There they have two balconies with 360 degrees view, a cafe/bar and a shared kitchen.

Membership plans start from 350,– BGN for Workspace and go up to 435,– BGN for Private Offices. Currently, the space has around 190 members and will soon implement also Club Memberships plan. Every member of the Club will have access to events, conference room and betahaus community.

betahaus | Sofia @ Slaveykov Square
betahaus | Sofia @ Slaveykov Square

Ellie: Currently we have around 5 active pilots and we effectively work B2B2C. So we build our application for businesses which have their own user bases.

Volker: One of our ongoing projects is a pilot with Telekom. With their team, and partners from Riddle & Code and Simple Mobility, we have created the Magenta Scooter — an innovation in e-mobility that allows users to ride share while using their decentralized digital IDs. That means users can rent the scooter with our app and our identity. The main advantage there is that you can store your drivers licence in your Jolocom SmartWallet and then share this license with the app of Telekom. This eliminates the long onboarding process of verifying your license. 

Ellie: Another example is our e-government collaboration with The City of Antwerp called Blockchain on the Move. Using the SmartWallet, municipal employees can issue and validate their own credentials and create eIDs for citizens – it’s a digital ID with which you can register at the university or go to a swimming pool, as two examples.

Photo by Lea GK


Want more? Check out betahaus | Hamburg and betahaus | Barcelona.

If you want to know more about how to travel and work from different coworking spaces with one membership, click here.

Ellie: Two years ago we adopted a new legal structure for Jolocom GmbH according to the purpose model of ownership, manifesting our commitment and dedication to building a self-sovereign organization. That means we can’t take VC funding or sell public shares of the company. 

Volker: Jolocom is a community driven organisation – both in a tech sense but also much further beyond. We’re hugely involved in the DWeb community where we organize and attend events for the decentralized community. Every year we also help organize and attend the DWeb Camp in San Francisco, which brings together all kinds of creatives so this technology of tomorrow is built in a collaborative way.


Ellie: I know that before joining betahaus Jolocom was in the Ethereum office – a collaborative blockchain space for companies also building on the same platform and the idea was always to stay within a coworking space. When they closed and we had to move, the next closest choice in terms of company culture was betahaus. 

Ellie: The people in the building and the spaces are just really cool. I personally don’t go to community events as much as i would like to but I still end up meeting a lot of people here. Mostly in the kitchen. One of my good friends is actually someone I met in betahaus. 

Volker: I once saw a friend of mine presenting at betabreakfast and I didn’t know that he would be here. It was so funny seeing him on the stage.

Photo by Lea GK

Volker: There is this really nice place, called Green Rabbit with salads and baked potatoes where I like to go to. Sometimes I just keep it simple and go to Lidl.

Ellie: I eat a lot in west.berlin cafe which is here around the corner and I love the Matcha Lattes from Starbucks.

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