Agora Startup Icon (ASI) is an online startup pitch competition that allows startup ventures from around the world to gain access to users and qualified investors. Contestants compete to attract the most users for their products and the ASI top prize. 64 companies are crowd-sourced based on number of users they attract during the pre-contest phase. Startup Icon adds a gamification layer to the broadcast to aid contestant user acquisition. This creates an exciting environment for audience members, contestants, and judges. ASI provides access to a worldwide pool of potential users, Silicon Valley capital and investor network for startups. ASI - helping awesome startups succeed.
Primary benefit is to gain traction and users. Contestants are exposed to the entire ASI audience pool. Audience members are incentified through gamification to sign up with each contestant, try their product and bring their friends. Contestants have the potential to convert audience members into paying subscribers or users. Most startups fail because of their inability to secure enough users to become commercially viable.
Contestants gain exposure to potential angel and VC investors without having the expense of an investor road show. Contestants will enter into a term sheet allowing ASI’s pool of Judges to purchase on a first come first served basis up to $1MM of their entity at the valuation prior to the contest. This term sheet will expire 2 months after the finals.
ASI breaks down traditional barriers to capital, i.e. closed networks, lack of information flow between investors, geographic isolation. Contestants can reach a broad investor audience from anywhere in the world.
Each judge will be rewarded for helping the Starting 64 succeed in the marketplace. Judges will also have to ability to buy into each of the Starting 64 for a period after the competition at the pre-competition valuation, further rewarding the Judges for helping the Startup succeed.
Investors can evaluate a companies’ ability to gain traction from ASI’s audience/early adopts and see the users feedback to better evaluate investments.