Ross Dickinson, founder of Kibosh, secured £50,000 worth of business support following the grand final of ThePitch 2011, organised by BusinessZone.co.uk in association with print and digital services company Yell.
Dickinson, who won the Scottish heat of the competition during the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in August, pitched alongside contestants from England, Wales and Northern Ireland, as well as a wildcard picked by the public, at London’s legendary Pacha nightclub.
Delivering a killer pitch while stood on a dancer’s podium under the nightclub spotlight, the entrepreneur, whose invention is a device which can be clamped around damaged pipe work to provide a temporary repair solution in an emergency, also won the most votes from attendees in the People’s Choice Award sponsored by XLN Telecom.
The contestants were judged by a panel of seasoned business brains; Karen Darby, a serial social entrepreneur; Carl Hopkins, marketing expert and star of Channel 4’s The Secret Millionaire and Darren Fell, founder of online accounting company Crunch.
The £50,000 worth of prizes won by Dickinson, who has been a plumber for 10 years, include marketing and advertising solutions from Yell, 12 months mentoring from Karen Darby, a year’s membership of the Forum of Private Business, PR coaching from Do Your Own PR and 12 months membership of Adam Street private members club.
The event, also sponsored by Business Environment, Powwownow, Realex Payments and Crunch, was also the official UK closing party for Global Entrepreneurship Week.
Richard Hanscott, chief executive officer for Yell in the UK, comments: “The Pitch is a wonderful showcase of the depth of entrepreneurial talent and it’s clear from the quality of the finalists that this is flourishing in local businesses across the UK.
“Ross and his innovative plumbing product are an outstanding illustration of the drive and passion that are essential in setting up and running your own business. As a champion of local business, we are delighted to be able to help Ross.”
Carl Hopkins, The Pitch 2011 judge and founder of kloog, adds: "True innovation comes from solving a problem, and Ross has done just that. Borne of his first hand experience he has come up with a truly innovative and simple solution.
“His product is easy to understand, easy to use and memorable. Kibosh ticks all the boxes for both consumers and for investors. I am confident we will see them on the shelves of retailers, the tool boxes of plumbers and in our homes in the future."
Dan Martin, editor of BusinessZone.co.uk, comments: “Our grand final usually takes place during the day but this year, we decided to do something different and make the competition an evening event at one of London’s biggest nightclubs. It was a huge success!
“Having the entrepreneurs pitching on podiums meant the audience could get up, close and personal to some of Britain’s brightest business talent.
“All the pitchers did well but Ross Dickison emerged victorious both in the judges and the public’s minds. We wish Kibosh the very best of luck for the future and know that the amazing prize package will help him on the next step in his business journey.”
The other finalists in the final were:
• England: Cara Sayer, Snoozeshade (a product to help children sleep while in a pushchair)
• Wales: Helen McAvoy and Naomi Kibble, Rocktails (pre-packaged frozen cocktails)
• Northern Ireland: Barbara Hughes, Boozeberries (premium liqueur infused with wild berries)
• Wildcard: Gill Ellis and Nicola Morgan, Behaviour stop (creators of Good Choice Teddy, a cuddly toy which helps children improve their behaviour.
For more information about The Pitch 2011 and to arrange interviews, please contact Meg Pope on 0117 915 9615.
Full details about The Pitch 2011 are at thepitch2011.com.
The Pitch 2011 is an initiative by Sift Media, in association with Yell.
About Sift Media
Sift Media is a leading business-to-business publisher specialising in online professional communities and face-to-face business events.
With a range of services including websites, email publications, industry awards and exhibitions, Sift Media delivers original, branded content to over half a million professionals every month, across small business, finance, accounting, HR and training, IT, marketing, customer management and knowledge management.
BusinessZone.co.uk is Sift Media’s online publication for entrepreneurs providing free, practical and no-nonsense advice on how to start and grow a successful business.
Yell Group is a leading provider of digital services within the emerging local eMarketplace for consumers and SMEs across its operations in the UK, US, Spain and some countries in Latin America. Building on its strong presence in the local market through its current digital and print portfolio, Yell is developing a broad range of digital services tailored to the converging needs of SMEs and consumers.
These address both the SME need to grow, transact and be efficient in the digital world, and the consumers’ need to connect locally to the goods and services they want, in a way which saves them time and money, and moves their lives forward.
In the year ended 31 March 2011, Yell Group had 1.3 million SME customers.
For further information on Kibosh pipe repair, please visit kiboshpiperepair.com/.
Sift Media, Meg Pope - T: 0117 915 9615
Yell, Demelza Fryer-Saxby - T: 0118 3582977