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  • techpitch 4.5 celebrates its first birthday with a new bunch of excellent start-ups

    It's been a busy year for techpitch 4.5, so far 49 companies have pitched during six events, and over 200 startups have been through the pitch training workshops supported by UKTI. Last Wednesday the 2Pears team celebrated the one-year anniversary of the first ever techpitch 4.5, by inviting another great bunch of start-ups to compete on stage. All of them facing an excellent panel of industry experts, entrepreneurs and investors. Wednesday’s winners join the likes of EngageSciences, MarketInvoice, Eventasaurus, StylePilot and Flooved who have previously won the pitch competition and grown with the help of pitch events like techpitch 4.5.

    The evening was chaired for the 5th time by Danvers Baillieu, one of the co-founders of Bootlaw and a senior associate at law firm Pinsent Masons LLP.

    Before the pitch competition started a keynote presentation was given by Serge Taborin, Group Business Development Director at Archant, the largest independently-owned regional publisher in the UK with 64 newspapers, 80 magazines, and 200 websites and mobile sites, 2,5m in circulation, and 4m MUVs.

    Serge talked about the importance of the digital value chain in local publishing for continued innovation, how Archant's business is more about running communities rather than content, and how Archant exploits their "local gold mine" to launch new products. As many as 70 percent of their digital projects are developed by working with specialised entrepreneurs and businesses, through M&A's, JVs or equity-based partnerships, while only 30 percent are developed in-house. So, Archant are always on the look-out for interesting new tech businesses to work together in different ways.

    And, at techpitch 4.5, 8th February 2012 there were definitely some interesting companies:

    Bantr, a real time network for in game football opinion @Bantr

    Bluefields.com, a sports start-up focusing on amateur sport teams @bluefieldscom

    CompareMySolar Limited, a solar panel comparison site @CompareMySolar

    Ditto, a website helping users freecycle unused stuff @DittoReuse

    Livemusicstage.com, a platform for broadcasting, monetising and experiencing live music online @LiveMusicStage

    Novativ Media, an interactive taxi media which respects passengers' interests and privacy

    Pepper, a social mobile app connecting friends through live music @Pepperapp

    Seek & Adore, a site connecting designer makers with people looking to discover and buy unique and beautiful things @SeekAndAdore

    AND THE WINNER IS...

    Congratulations to Bantr for winning the pitch competition - both the judges and the audience vote! Bantr was closely followed by Bluefieds.com in second place, with Seek & Adore coming in third, with, according to James Smith ‘the perfect investor pitch’.

    Bantr will now be invited to participate in an investment meeting arranged by Scottish investment network Par Equity to explore any potential investment opportunities.

    A huge thank you goes out to the expert judging panel including:

    Sophie Cox, Founder, of Worldeka - a collaborative platform for social change aimed at helping charities, policy makers and global activists harness social media for social good.

    Juliana Koranteng, Founder & Editor, of MediaTainmentFinance - the business journal that tracks financial investments in the creative industries, the associated technologies and copyright issues.

    James Smith, Partner of Black Sheep Fund and commercial operations director at BBH - responsible for all aspects of the operational running of the agency. The Black Sheep Fund is a venture between Zag (BBH's brand invention business) and Spark Ventures.

    Serge Taborin, Group Business Development Director of Archant - UK's largest independently-owned regional media business active in fields of publishing, contract printing, events, internet and mobile.

    Greg Young, Associate with Passion Capital – and working directly with the partners and investee companies regarding business models, traction, growth and creating value.

    And we also thank our event partners Bootlaw, UKTI, Par Equity, TheNextWeb and MediaTainmentFinance.

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The 2Pears blog – bringing you start-ups, technews and other great things

Since you've found your way to our blog you might be familiar with the 2Pears already. You will perhaps know that we run the Music 4.5 events, bringing the tech and music industries together to discuss how bright the future could be if we all work together. You might also be familiar with our techpitch 4.5 and MUSIC techpitch 4.5 events where we give talented start-ups a chance to pitch to a panel of industry experts and investors. If you haven't heard about us, welcome anyway, this blog will hopefully allow you to get to know us better.

This blog will be run by the 2Pears team Rassami Hök Ljungberg and Petra Johansson and their Nordic partner in crime journalist Charlotta Hedman, aka Lotta. We will bring you Q&As with up and coming start-ups, technews, and the latest about our events and pitches. We will focus on entrepreneurialism and how to make a return on investment (preferably by 4.5 times). We're interested in what makes businesses and start-ups successful, what makes the tech world tick... and what is changing it. We like cocky newcomers and disruptive business strategies. If this applies to you or your company get in touch! We love hearing from you and growing our network of entrepreneurs and people who can help them.

If you're interested in issues affecting the technology sector and want to know more about funding, government initiatives, politics, infrastructure, international trade and development keep coming back. And do let us know if there is anything you would like us to cover.

We hope you will find this a thought-provoking and fun place to get your tech news. Follow us on twitter if you want to keep an eye on what we're up to and to hear about the latest blog posts as they go up.

Rassami, Petra and Charlotta

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