Start-ups win MAA ‘Dragon’s Den’

Nine start-ups have secured the services of marketing agencies for a year following a Dragon’s Den-style event held by the Marketing Agencies Association (MAA).
The scheme, part of Marketing 4 Startup Britain, was founded by a group of entrepreneurs last year, with the backing of David Cameron, to accelerate business in the UK.
Last year, just two businesses won backing. Safetray secured the services of Iris for a year after impressing the panel with its simple and effective problem solving concept for the catering industry, beating 88 other entries. Runner-up Rocktail’s, a brand of frozen vodka cocktails, was given the opportunity to work with Pulse.
Last week’s event saw a selection of new businesses given four minutes each to pitch to a panel of MMA member agency chiefs, including WDMP, Arc, Pulse Group and Ogilvy Action.
Some proved so popular that the agencies were forced to give a 60-second pitch on why they were best suited to help the entrepreneurs.
The full list of agency and start-up matches is:
• 5 Point Plus, an innovative safety car seatbelt for children, taken on by Initials
• Able Journey’s, a travel company for the disabled, taken on by Saatchi & Saatchi X
• Vanitea – a product design innovation offering high-quality and fresh teas from China and Japan, looking to roll out a unique tea-bar concept, taken on Cheil Worldwide
• PleaseCycle – combining cycling, digital technology and gamification to help organisations encourage and reward employee cycling, taken on by WDMP
• The Cambridge Raincoat Company, stylish and innovative raincoats designed for cycling, taken on Arc
• LimeCo –sustainable alternative to cement for construction, taken on by HH&S
• Bertie and Jack – contemporary artwork using unique cut-out process, taken on Pulse Group
• Mary Elizabeth Cosmetics – skin-care products using natural plant oils, created by an aromatherapist after her brush with skin cancer, taken on by RPM
• Falvrbox, a tasting box allowing people to discover new products made by the best independent food and drink producers around, taken on by Ogilvy Action.
WDMP chief executive Gavin Wheeler (pictured) said: “We had targeted PleaseCycle as a business we wanted to work with. Their proposition combines digital innovation, gamification, and consumer engagement with one of our agency passions – cycling. They, like us, work across B2B and B2C. The synergies across our businesses are huge. We look forward to working with them to drive their business to the next level.”

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