Each of the entrepreneurs – who are all in the early stages of getting their startups off the ground – will have the chance to pitch a four-minute presentation to a panel of bigwig US venture capitalists.
Prisk, who ran his own surveying consultancy firm before becoming an MP, will be helping them fine-tune their presentations. “These venture capitalists see up to 200 businesses a week. It’s my job to help the team of British entrepreneurs stand out,” he explains. “A bad presentation can kill a great idea. Hilarious jokes about British television will go down like a lead balloon in the States, for example. I’ll be showing them how to get their point across quickly and avoid ‘Death by Slides’.”
As part of the “Web Mission”, organised by market intelligence company Polecat and serial entrepreneur Oli Barrett, Prisk will be introducing the budding entrepreneurs to tech heavyweights such as Bebo’s Michael Birch and Apple chief designer Jonathan Ive. He’ll also be showing them around San Jose State University’s life-sciences and emerging-technologies incubator.
“In the UK, entrepreneurs say: ‘I’ve made £10m so I’ll sell up’. In the States, they say: ‘How can I create a £100m business?’ Part of this trip is about looking at how we can encourage that kind of attitude on this side of the pond,” comments Prisk.
Prisk will be blogging about his trip exclusively for Real Business over the next few days. Stay tuned!
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