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Event Outline: GradInvest Showcase

Key dates and milestones for applicants


Application form open 22 January
Deadline for companies to submit application form attaching their 1-page executive summary and logo 10 February by 9.00
Each University to validate local applications By 10 February
Email companies with notification of presentation time slot and online panel selection day details From 10 February
Support sessions at each University Organised by each University individually
1st Online Panel Selection Session with external investor panel + internal observers 24, 25 and 27 February
2nd Online Panel Selection Session with external investor panel + internal observers
3rd Online Panel Selection Session with external investor panel + internal observers (if required)
Written feedback following online panel selection sessions for forwarding to ventures by the centres/university teams 4 March
Deadline for electronic presentations required for use at the Pitch Practice sessions 16 March 9.00
Webinar 31 March
Pitch Practice sessions @ local venues  

30 March 2020: Surrey/Southampton

31 March 2020: Bath

1 April 2020: Bristol



Notification to inform companies about the outcome of the final selection following the Pitch Practice sessions + Information Pack with info on the stand + exhibition requirements form w/c 6 April
Deadline for updated company 1-page summary (if updating was required following feedback received after the Online Panel Selection Days) 22 April 9.00
Deadline for companies to submit their exhibition requirements form 22 April 9.00
Pitch refinement sessions – Zoom session with Tim Doidge 22, 23 and 24 April
Webinar – How to get the most out of the event 7 May 11.00 – 12.00
Deadline for presenting companies to submit electronic presentations for use at the event 7 May 9.00
Final Information Packs sent to exhibiting/pitching companies along with draft Delegate List 12 May

11.30 – 15.30 Dress rehearsal of presentations

Wednesday, 20 May

07.00 Setup for companies


8.30 – 12.00: Graduate Acceleration Showcase

Thursday, 21 May

Deloitte Holborn,

2 New St Square, London 

Selecting the companies to exhibit and pitch (all stages are compulsory):

STAGE 1: Once applications are validated by each Institution, companies will be invited to attend an Online Panel Selection Session. A maximum of 45 companies will pitch online. To prepare for the selection phase they’ll receive support from each Institution.

At the online selection session, each company will give a 5-minute pitch to a panel of mentors and experienced entrepreneurs. A 10-minute Q&A + feedback from the panelists will follow each pitch.

The aim is to select 24-27 companies to go to the next phase of the programme.

STAGE 2: Selected companies will be invited to pitch live in 3 different locations in front of an audience of local investor and experienced entrepreneurs who will provide feedback. At the end of these sessions, 18-20 companies will be selected to pitch at the London showcase.

STAGE 3: Selected companies will be given further support to hone their pitch ready for the showcase via their local Institutions and they will attend online pitch refinement sessions delivered by SETsquared trainers.

All companies selected to pitch at the showcase on 21 May will be required to attend a compulsory rehearsal session on 20 May so accommodation will be required for the night of 20 May at your own cost.

5-minute Pitch Guideline

In general, the audience is looking for an overview/snapshot of your value proposition in the time allocated. They are not expecting huge amounts of detail about how your solution works but are in general more interested in the overall business opportunity that you are presenting. As a guide it is recommended that you cover off the following questions:

  • The Problem: What is the problem that you are trying to solve?
  • The Solution: What is your solution to that problem?
  • The Opportunity: What is the market opportunity for your solution? “Value Impact” of the business idea
  • The Business Model: Explain how the business model works. How are you going to make money?
  • The Team: Who are they and what is their relevant experience?
  • The Ask: What do you need in terms of next steps?


If you have any questions, please email or call Andrea Kelly on 07970 435 494.

SETsquared is a partnership between

  • University of Bath
  • University of Bristol
  • University of Exeter
  • University of Southampton
  • University of Surrey