Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Green Company Walks Away with $5,000 in Startup Prizes at Think Big Kansas City!

Congrats to the TBKC Pitch Big Winner PlanetReuse!

After numerous panel sessions, a fascinating keynote speech by Bill Rancic, and an informative talk from Michael Gale of Gramercy Private Equity, Think Big Kansas City seemed to be wrapping up.  But TBKC could not come to a close without the production of one of the most talked about activities of the day: Pitch Big.

In the competition, the three Pitch Big finalists were asked to present a 5-minute pitch to a VC panel of judges (Chris Geisert of Tradebot, Rachael Qualls of Angel Capital Group and Michael Gale of Gramercy Private Equity).  After their pitch, the judges would grill the contestant with a series of startup questions (and give great pitching advice!). 

Pitch Big started off with Kevin Curtin of Kinergi Systems.  During his pitch, Kevin touched on the importance of LED lighting in the commerical industry.  The judges (of course) drilled him with questions and then the audience voted and gave Kevin a number (1-10, 10 was the highest) for how he did during the pitch.

This process repeated for the other two candidates: Willow Lundgren and Nathan Benjamin of PlanetReuse and Scott Halvorson of SmartPharm

When the audience was asked to vote, things ended up getting a little heated.  People debated for their favorite contestant, fought for their favorite company, and took a stance as to what they thought was a fair ranking. 

In the end, Willow and Nathan of PlanetReuse walked away as the winners.  The business was awarded an "Entrepreneur in a Box" prize consisting of 6 months of free office space at bizperc, startup services and guidance, logo design, and much more (worth over $5,000!). 

A BIG congratulations to PlanetReuse for becoming the winner of Pitch Big 2011!  And a special thanks to all of the participants, the audience, and our fierce judges for taking part in the event.

Written by Allison Way.

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