Branson’s ‘Pitch to Rich’ finalists announced

Six entrepreneurs chosen to present ideas to Sir Richard Branson and leading business experts

Virgin Media Pioneers has announced the six start-up finalists chosen to present their “unique business ideas” to Sir Richard Branson and a host of industry leaders as part of its annual ‘Pitch to Rich’ competition.

Selected from over 400 entries on the basis of a public online vote, the finalists, which include a snowsports app and a biodegradable poncho company, will now compete to win a package of £5000 and “money-can’t-buy mentoring”.

The finalists are vying to win one of two awards; the Start Up Award; for businesses in their first 12 months of trading, and the Innovation Award; for small tech start-ups looking to “make the next leap forward” with free enrolment to leading London tech accelerator the Accelerator Academy also on offer.

The six finalists will pitch live at the Branson home in Oxfordshire on May 13 to a panel of leading  entrepreneurs, including Holly Tucker; co-founder of Not on the High Street, Nick Jenkins; Moonpig founder, Peter Williams; co-founder of Jack Wills, and Dina Toki-O; a fashion Youtuber, along with Sir Branson himself.

The ‘Pitch to Rich’ finalists are as follows:

  • Start Up Award – Igor Roberts, founder of first class storage by the box’, Boxhug
  • Start Up Award – Lettija Lee, founder of plantable, disposable rain ponchos, PecoPoncho
  • Start Up Award- Carl Thomas, founder of wireless headphone company, AudioWings
  • Innovation Award- James Grant, founder of motion sensor snowsports app, Lines
  • Innovation Award – Chris Thorpe, founder of 3D printer content for schools, I Can Make
  • Innovation Award – Carl Thomas, founder of mobile artographer social platform, miPic

Sir Richard Branson commented:“I always look forward to judging the Pitch to Rich final and this year we have been impressed by the quality and ingenuity of the pitches we have received.

“I look forward to meeting all of the finalists and wish them all the best of luck with taking the stage on the day and showing us what their businesses are capable of.”

You will be able to watch the finalist ‘pioneers’ pitch live on May 13 and vote for the best pitches. Find out more here.


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