Start-up brands scoop £50,000 of free agency support in Dragon's Den-style event

Start-up brands with a smorgasbord of business ideas - from bespoke shampoo to premium coffee to kids ready meals - were among those who won free agency support for a year at the live pitching event hosted by Marketing Agencies Association and StartUp Britain.

In a Dragon's Den-style competition this month, 14 start-up brands, selected from 130 entries, pitched their businesses to a panel of marketing agencies in a bid to win a year of free support.

Start-ups pitched for four minutes to a room full of agency people who had to raise their hands to express an interest in working with a company.

Sharing a total of £50,000 worth of free agency services, eight budding start-ups won valuable marketing support:

  • CaféPod (premium instant coffee capsule brand) – WDMP
  • Concoction (bespoke shampoo brand) – The Lounge Group
  • Cornerstone (premium men’s shaving online-only brand)– Elvis
  • Face For Business (telephone answering service) – Initials
  • Honest Brew (direct mail craft beer brand)– Pulse
  • Nanna Kay’s (nutritious ready meals for children) – Geometry
  • Student Grub – (food box delivery service for students) Ignis
  • Tea Huggers – (high quality tea brand) RPM

Start of a relationship

Kay Shearing, co-founder of Nanna Kay's, said: "We've taken the business as far as we can, now we've got the products right, we need to let everyone know how good it is. Luckily, we found someone."

Sarah Todd, chief executive of Geometry, explained the pairing: "From the moment Kay started talking it was clear she had a real vision and purpose for her brand. T think there was definitely an emotional part for me as a mum that really connected with what difference the team are trying to make."

MAA managing director Scott Knox said that pairing up new businesses with agencies right at the start of their journey could be invaluable. "Start-up businesses always assume that good marketing is expensive and something to do when they’re bigger. But get your messaging right from the start, with a well thought out long-term strategy, and it will save you a fortune in the long run."

The third annual "Win an Agency"  event was held at Iris Worldwide's Southbank offices last week.


Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Brand Republic Jobs

subscribe now


Waitrose boosts content strategy with 'Weekend Kitchen with Waitrose' C4 tie-up
Hottest virals: Cute puppies star in Pedigree ad, plus Idris Elba and Fruyo
Amnesty International burns candles to illuminate new hope
Toyota achieves the impossible by calming angry Roman drivers
Tom of Finland's 'homoerotic' drawings made into stamps
YouTube reveals user habits to appeal to 'older' marketers
Ex-M&S marketing chief Steven Sharp consulting at WPP
Wolff Olins reveals new CEO after Apple poaches Karl Heiselman
Glasgow offers £30,000 prize to best digital idea for 2014 Commonwealth Games
Google's revenues surge but shares drop as it grapples with transition to mobile
Facebook beats Twitter to most 'marketing friendly' social media site crown, says DMA
Fableists believe children like Finn should be outdoors enjoying life
Homebase, Baileys and Camelot join the line-up at Media360
MasterCard renews Rugby World Cup sponsorship to push cashless message
Lynx unleashes £9m 'Peace invasion' campaign
Social Brands 100 Youth: Pizza Hut most social youth brand in UK
Cheryl Cole is wild and arresting in new L'Oreal work
Morrisons told not to show alcohol ads during YouTube nursery rhymes
O2 head of brand Shadi Halliwell departs after 23 years at company in restructure
Tesco hit by further sales decline as it turns to digital Clubcard and social network
Branding guru Wally Olins dies aged 83
Duracell short film captures epic Transatlantic voyage
Ash runs Tinder experiment to show smokers are less desirable to opposite sex
British Airways teams up with Gerry Cottle Jnr for summer of rooftop film screenings
Arklu says 'girls can be superheroes too' with doll design competition
Coke enters squash market with Oasis Mighty Drops
Virgin Galactic signs up Land Rover as space flight sponsor
Motorola marketer Andrew Morley departs as Google gears up for sale to Lenovo
US Airways apologises after tweeting obscene image at a customer
Mumsnet admits users' emails and passwords accessed via Heartbleed bug