The Great British Startups Cup: Knockout Stages (Groups E & F)

Our 'start-ups World Cup' knockout stage matches continue, with Beer Hawk, MarketInvoice, Beer 52 and Seedrs all involved...

Referees: Andy McLoughlin, Alastair Mitchell and Doug Richard

See the full judging criteria 


Despite the scoreline, this was a tight first half, with strong company names from both sides on display. However, BeerHawk’s less-than-stellar website was always going to leave them open to a swift counter-attack, and so it proved, with MarketInvoice’s own site lashing home a left-footed shot to continue its impeccable run of form. The invoice finance site doubled its lead just before the break when its social media presence out-jostled BeerHawk’s to nod home following a corner.


Referee’s comments: Beer Hawk
“Loved almost everything about this company except their rather tired looking website. Their brand is good, their elevator pitch is snappy and their business model is mature. If they can execute their multi-channel strategy (and sort out the website) they’ll be tough to beat.”

BeerHawk had looked shellshocked at the break, and the crowd filed out for the second half fully expecting MarketInvoice to wrap up the game in efficient fashion. However, the half-time team talk and refreshments must have done the trick, as the beer delivery site came flying out with an early goal when their elevator pitch – which was excellent all afternoon – smashed home a 25-yard screamer. The comeback seemed to be on, and BeerHawk continued to push for an equaliser, but MarketInvoice’s all-round business strength saw them hold on. MarketInvoice put paid to any hopes of a comeback in injury time when its company name seized on a loose ball, sprinting the length of the pitch and slotting home to make it 3-1. Despite the scoreline, there were a lot of positives for BeerHawk to take from the game, and once their website and social media presence improves there will be few who can match them.


Referee’s comments: MarketInvoice
“MarketInvoice helps businesses grow more quickly by liberating the working capital trapped within outstanding invoices.”


Beer Hawk MarketInvoice
Company name 4 5
Website 2 5
Elevator pitch 5 3
Social presence 3 4

MarketInvoice are through to the Quarter Finals.


One of the early tournament favourites, crowdfunding website Seedrs came into this game brimming with confidence following an excellent showing in the group stages, whilst joint group winners Beer52 had also been talking up their chances. It was Seedrs who started better, though, with slick interplay between its website, elevator pitch, and social presence leaving Beer52 second to every ball. Seedrs’ dominance soon paid off with a goal, bundled in at the near post by their impeccable elevator pitch, but Beer52 hit back to equalise with its social presence just minutes after the restart. It was Seedrs who had the last word of the first half, though, as their website scored with a fine chip just before the break.


Referee’s comments: Seedrs
“Seedrs, which allows startups to seek early stage investment from angels, helps entrepreneurs, investors, and the economy grow. I like that their minimum investment is very low.”

Despite Beer52’s competitive showing in the first half, the second was a more one-sided affair, with Seedrs’ social presence and website combining impeccably to score a wonderful team goal ten minutes after the break. Beer52 continued to push for something from the game, but the young team’s heads were beginning to drop, and Seedrs took advantage – booking their place in the quarter-finals by converting a penalty to wrap the game up. Beer52 can leave the tournament with their heads held high, having put in a fine showing in all areas of the pitch, but it seems nothing can stand in the way of the Seedrs juggernaut.


Referee’s comments: Beer 52
“My favourite website of the bunch, using photography and design to great effect. The name is good and the elevator pitch is clear and compelling. The team are still small but they have big ambitions. Their challenge will be whether they can open up other (non direct B2C) markets fast enough to support their planned growth.”


Seedrs Beer 52
Company name 4 4
Website 5 4
Elevator pitch 5 4
Social presence 5 4

Seedrs are through to the Quarter Finals.


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