RiverPitch extends deadline, hopes to see more startups pitch to the likes of Steve Baxter


The opportunity to take part in River City Labs’ River Pitch competition has been extended, with applications for investment-hungry entrepreneurs now closing on Wednesday.


The event will see seven startups given the opportunity to pitch their business ideas to some of Australia’s most reputable investors, including Shark Tank judge and RiverPitch founder Steve Baxter.


Last year saw companies ranging from an online platform making it easier for people to access mobility equipment to project planning software get to have their time in the spotlight.


Peta Ellis, the general manager of River City Labs, told StartupSmart this year she hopes to see an equally diverse field of candidates.


“We don’t ever put a prerequisite on the types of businesses we’re looking for, but what we’re aiming for each year is better businesses,” she says.


“We want them to have customers and already have good growth so we’re offering the investors a better opportunity. And the reason we extended the applications was to get a better reach nationwide – so it’s open to any applicant in Australia.”


Ellis says the price of a plane ticket to Brisbane is “quite a small investment” to get in front of a room full of investors looking to take a stake in a new technology company.


“I think for us it’s a continuation of focusing on helping to grow startups,” she says.


“This is the seventh River Pitch we’ve done, so it’s not a new event but what we have focused on is getting better people in the room… they’re not just coming to have a look around, they’re there with a vested interest to get involved in a startup.”


Serial entrepreneur and River City Labs founder Steve Baxter said in a statement the event was a “great opportunity” for entrepreneurs as well as potential investors.


“RiverPitch is different to angel group setups as it is solely focused on bringing together investors and startups, without dictating how a single investment gets done,” he said.


“Following the event, meet-ups between both parties are organised bilaterally, attesting to RiverPitch’s flexible and yet proven approach to investment.”


The top ten pitches will be announced this Friday, with the shortlisted candidates presenting live at River City Labs in Brisbane the following week.


After a fortnight of coaching, the startups will present their final pitches at the RiverPitch event on Friday 19.


Do you know more on this story or have a tip of your own? Raising capital or launching a startup? . Follow StartupSmart on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

Broede Carmody is a senior journalist at SmartCompany where he has a knack for covering legal stories and mental health issues in the workplace. Previously, Broede was the co-editor of RMIT University’s student magazine Catalyst. He has a degree in journalism from RMIT. You can follow him on Twitter at @BroedeCarmody.