Three minutes – about the duration of an elevator ride – that is the time frame available for founders and young entrepreneurs at the Elevator Pitch BW to present their business idea. Ten startup teams rose to the preliminary regional challenge. Two KIT teams won over the jury and about 100 listeners with their poised presentations.
In the run-up, 16 teams entered into an online vote and the 10 ideas with the most votes made it to the Regional Cup Karlsruhe. There, they had to win over the eight-member jury with representatives from the economy and industry as well as specialists from startup funding during their pitches. In addition to the contents of the presentation and compliance with the time limit, the concept and the customer benefit of the business idea were also evaluated.
Third place was given to Refimo, the team that created a platform for job placement for refugees. Second place went to the KIT founder’s store2be. This team developed an online market place for temporary marketing and rental of stationary advertising and sales spaces. The winner of the Regional Cup Karlsruhe was otego, another KIT startup. The team, consisting of two physicists, a chemist, and an industrial engineer, develops new thermoelectric generators that enable self-sufficient energy supply through the generation of power from heat. The founders of otego look forward to the cash prize as well as being able to participate in the state final in the summer of 2016, where they will compete against the winners of the other Regional Cups from Baden-Württemberg and present their idea in front of a large audience once again.
Next to otego, another team has the opportunity to secure a spot in the state final. Thus, each year, a “wildcard” is given to the public favorite. This year, the startup store2be received the most votes. That team will now compete against the public favorites of the other Regional Cups in a separate competition. We are crossing our fingers for them!
Another team that participated at the Regional Cup Karlsruhe was HoneggerBauer FIREWALK, two industrial engineers from the KIT who want to start their own business with teambuilding events. Even though they didn’t get a spot in the state final, all participants profited from the media presence and the feedback part of the Elevator Pitch BW. The regional competition took place as part of the “Tag für Gründer und Jungunternehmer” (Day for Founders and Young Entrepreneurs) and was realized jointly by the Ministry of Finance and Economics, IHK Karlsruhe, and Karlsruhe Gründerallianz.