Virgin sets world record for longest business pitch marathon

Latest stage of 29 hour VOOM 2016 'pitchathon' saw 158 start-ups present to panel of judges including Cambridge Satchel Company founder Julie Deane

Back-to-back pitches from 158 start-ups across the UK, over the course of almost 29 hours, has resulted in Virgin Media Business setting a Guinness World Record title for longest business pitch marathon.

Completed as part of the latest stage of the VOOM 2016 (formerly known as Pitch to Rich) entrepreneur competition, the pitches were judged by a panel of industry names including Cambridge Satchel Company founder Julie Deane OBE and Virgin Media Business managing director Peter Kelly.

SB.TV founder Jamal Edwards MBE was also a guest judge at the event and spoke to Startups.co.uk at the VOOM ‘pitchathon’ where he shared his pitch tips, which you can read here.

Following the pitches, a shortlist of 40 semi-finalists will be announced to take part in workshops  with six finalists then chosen to take part in the live finale with Sir Richard Branson on June 28.

Kelly commented: “It was an ambitious record to set and a huge challenge.

“We saw some wonderful pitches that epitomised what this record, and competition is all about – being creative, resourceful and a little bit daring.”

Startups also spoke with the founder of 2015 Pitch to Rich finalist Approved Foods, Dan Cluderay, who said of the competition:

“This year has been amazing. [From the competition] the biggest win wasn’t getting new customers, the biggest win has been getting new suppliers – they’ve been calling us literally every day because Virgin have given us massive credibility by attaching their name to us. It just opens doors, what this competition did for us was to put our name out there.

“I imagine it would cost in excess of £1m to do a brand exercise that would give us the same amount of brand exposure that this has given us.”

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