Hey, Pitches! is a unique project that started this summer in Kyiv. It reveals an opportunity for startups founders to directly interact with investors and get valuable feedback on developing their projects. Hey, Pitches! was initiated by venture funds Adventures Lab and Flyer One Ventures. Ruslan Tymofieiev (Ruslan Timofeev), the founder of Adventures Lab, and Andrew Kryvorchuk, the fund’s Managing Partner, talk about the project at large and share their interaction with people interested in it.
Anti-pitching approach to grow
In order to get into the essence of the project, it is not enough to look at its name, Andrew Kryvorchuk explains. Hey, Pitches! is completely different and comes surprisingly for many founders. The heads of Adventures Lab dedicate their time to working with portfolio companies. Thus, they carry out regular meetings with startup founders, give them feedback, raise the problems and discuss them. The founders’ feedback states that they often come up with great ideas in communication. Additionally, it leads to developing new problem solutions that make a push to a business to grow.
That is why the main idea of the project is determined as anti-pitching. Andrew Kryvorchuk notes that they are willing to invest not only in portfolio companies but the whole ecosystem as well. Although the project team receives many applications from startups during the month, they choose up to ten they find more engaging and arrange a meeting. At the meetings, the founders are open to asking investors and leading entrepreneurs any questions.
The first session of Hey, Pitches! was conducted in August 2021. Its incredible demand is visible through the number of applications (more than 60) they received within one week since the event was announced. They opted for five of them and made their time for selected startups to communicate with.
Engaging every part of Ukraine
Ruslan Tymofieiev(Ruslan Timofeev), the founder of Adventures Lab, notices that Hey, Pitches! brings the founders another point of view to their startups: it enables them to analyze their own projects differently. The initiator states that most founders are so in love with their startup that they do not notice other crucial things that need to be solved or changed. The project’s objectives are to help the founders look at their startup from another angle and lead them to come to solutions on their own. It is reached by interaction time and the question-answer section between investors and founders.
In addition, Ruslan Tymofieiev mentions that the project receives applications from founders from all over Ukraine. Thus, Hey, Pitches! plays a national role of engagement that explains its big necessity in the business industry in the country. The project initiator comments that usually, startups with software or application developments come to participate. Almost 70% of participants are the projects at the MVP stage. The rest are already established and generate income for their business. Startup teams join the project for different reasons: to test the audience or the product properly, bring the product to the market, the question of improving monetization, project’s scale-up, etc.
When the founders did everything to launch their business but their product has not gained the vast majority of the audience, they need support and valuable feedback to promote their project. The initiators of Hey, Pitches! made up its mission to support Ukrainian startups and empower them to move forward.