What is PITCHCRAFT and why you NEED to attend it

pitchingIn my 10 years of HR work prior to becoming a full-fledged entrepreneur, I did an awful lot of presentations and gave a ton of job offers. I thought I was pretty good doing these things, so when I made my leap into entrepreneurship, I thought to myself:

“Hey whatever ‘selling’ I would need to do for my startup I can probably do preeetty well!”

Well, I was in for a rude awakening.

Pitching is Everything in Entrepreneurship

It turns out, selling (or pitching in startup parlance) is absolutely critical in startup development. ALL the major activities in doing a startup involved pitching:

Finding Co-founders:

Yep, you have to present something  very convincing to get them to say yes. I had to go through dozens of rejections before I was able to perfect my pitch and talk my first partner into investing their time and money in me. 

Recruiting Employees:

As a veteran recruiter coming into startup life, I thought this would be chicken feed.

Then I realized just how much help a brand name like “Chikka” helped me in recruiting when I was in corporate. Or how an actual office helped (and how a pseudo-office-home arrangement doesn’t help).  Or how a recruitment budget helped.

I had to learn to use other strategies to help me.

Raising Money:

If my 2013 self saw my 2006 self doing the investment pitches I did before, this is how my 2013 self would react:



The lifeblood of any business. When my co-founder and I decided to split responsibilities for STORM during its first year, I took on the responsibility of being the “pitchman.”

After 7 years of selling for my startup, its really been only in the last few years (and I’m a pretty confident guy) that I can say to myself “I CAN DO SALES WELL.”

Prior to that, I was grasping at straws. I didn’t know what worked and what didn’t. I really learned about selling through trial and error. (I am hopeful you won’t need 7 years to get a knack for this.)

The Pitching Gap is Real and Needs to be Addressed

I’ve now heard literally hundreds of startup pitches, if you combine the pitches I’ve heard facilitating Open Coffee, hearing individuals out during Startup Saturdays, observing in Startup Weekend, and attending other startup-related events.

Here’s an observation:

Often, the best idea doesn’t get the best opportunities.

If you go to the next Startup Weekend for example, this is something you can quickly observe if you listen to the pitches: if you just rely on the idea’s merit and block out the pitch (you can do this by writing down all the ideas as they are pitched, try not to judge, and then when the pitching stops, you can go back to your list and then judge), you’d see a discrepancy between the ideas you find interesting and the ideas that actually get chosen by the participants.

So much depends on the pitchman and how he pitches.

And you know what? Collectively, I think we need a lot of work on our pitches.

(I just remembered someone I was talking to about this who was saying: “it gets worse when they think they’re awesome…and they’re really not.” This is partly why I keep saying self-awareness and humility are two very important traits to develop as a founder)

Post Startups Unplugged

After conversing in Startups Unplugged, Maoi Arroyo (no relation to the former president) and I agreed that our interests dovetailed and we needed to work together on…something.

During a recent meeting at the Hybridgm office in AIM, Maoi mentioned, “Maybe we could do an event on how to do the right pitch, targeting entrep…”

Ittookmeabouttwomilliseconds to say yes, realizing how critical addressing this gap was.

PitchCraft: How To Develop a Killer Pitch for Raising Capital and Recruiting

pitchcraft logo

On May 25, 2013, we’re doing a seminar designed to teach participants what exactly the formula is on executing the right pitch, specifically for raising money and finding partners/recruitment.

It shall be held at the Fuller Hall of the Asian Institute of Management in Makati, from 1pm to 5pm.

This will be a paid event. Early bird rates (valid only up to May 15) are at P1000 for professionals and P500 for students (with valid ID).

Regular rates are at P1500 for professionals and P1000 for students (with a valid ID).

Here’s how the event will go:

1. Introductions

2. Keynote

3. Panel Discussion

4. Q&A

5. Post-Event: Real Pitching to Real Investors (Around a week after the Pitchcraft event, all interested participants shall be invited to do their pitches in front of real investors. This is the real thing!)

The keynote speaker for the event shall be Maoi herself. We’ll be announcing who the panelists will be soon enough. 

I think Maoi’s the perfect choice for giving this seminar (I actually can’t wait to attend this myself). Her firm, Hybridigm, is a startup incubator specializing in biotech. She’s been helping startup founders hone their pitches for more than a decade now. (And if you’ve ever met her, you’d know it’s going to be FUN).

I find that one of the VERY interesting inclusions here is the Post-Event. We figured, the best learning happens during ACTUAL pitches right? So what did we arrange? A real pitching event with real investors.  You can get to apply everything you will learn form the Pitchcraft proper onto an ACTUAL pitching process. (If you think about it…this is AWESOME)

How to Register

1. Send payment to:

BPI Account No: 0321-0230-61
Account Name: Hybridigm Consulting Inc.

2. Send a photo/scanned copy of the deposit slip to Angeli at angeli@juangreatleap.com

3. Angeli will send you an email confirmation (and an ultra-quick survey) to confirm your slot


You could pay online:

1. Purchase the tickets online by clicking one of the buttons below:

buy now button

RATE FOR STUDENTS (Students) – P1000
buy now button

2. Send a copy of the Paypal receipt to Angeli at angeli@juangreatleap.com

3. Angeli will send you an email confirmation (and an ultra-quick survey) to confirm your slot

Register NOW!

If you are an aspiring/current entrepreneur from ANY field, I suggest you register as fast as possible to reserve your slot (150 slots only).

Let’s make our pitches count, eh? 

Pitchcraft: How To Develop a Killer Pitch for Raising Capital and Recruiting is being brought to you by

JGL with textand


with the help of our sponsors:


go negosyo


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