The St.George Kick Start grants are back in 2018 and they are the real deal. We’re sharing the wonderful success story from a past winner, Helen Mitchell who is the co-founder of Busivid.
The Busivid Kick Start Journey
While by no means an official requirement to enter, but highly encouraged, Helen has been a St.George customer for many years. So, when Helen saw the call for entries for the St.George Kick Start grants in 2015, the timing could not have been more perfect to take Busivid to the next level. Helen also recalls that, “the association with TEDxSydney was compelling and thoroughly impressed our investors.”
In a nutshell, Busivid’s goal is to revolutionise the way businesses create, manage and distribute videos. When Helen pitched Busivid at TEDxSydney in 2015, the product was just beyond proof-of-concept. The app was already available on the Google and Apple stores, but “the marketing message was missing the target audience.”
Today, the Busivid business has elements of the original business idea, however, Helen attributes part of her success to the Kick Start process because it encouraged her to refine the business message for the pitch. As a result, Busivid now provides a much deeper offering to clients.
Tips and tricks for success
If you’re thinking of entering the 2018 Kick Start grant competition, you should! To help give you a kick start, here are three pearls of wisdom from Helen.
- Only focus on the important parts. “The 60 second limit is tough. It forces you to strip away anything that’s not absolutely vital. I rehearsed over and over every morning and every night for weeks beforehand.”
- It’s totally worth it! “Be aware that like most things in life it takes effort to reap rewards, but now the prize value has increased as well as respect for the grant. The grant has been a stepping-stone to other opportunities and validated our proposition.”
- You will learn about yourself during the pitch process. “The highlight of the process was surviving. It was extremely challenging and I had to overcome incredible nerves… once it was over it was like a huge weight had lifted off my shoulders. To then be one of the winners left me feeling euphoric. Feeling all the personal discomfort was worth it – for the business and staff who rely on you as well as personally overcoming a fear.”
How Busivid invested the St.George Kick Start grant
Busivid invested the St.George Kick Start grant into employing a young, disadvantaged youth in the NSW Central Coast. For context, unemployment in the Central Coast is nearly four times the national rate with 21.8% among 15-24 year olds. Helen employed a young gentleman named Edward who was given the opportunity to represent Busivid at a series of trade events (small business shows across America) where he demonstrated and sold Busivid software and applications. He is currently studying law and regularly returns to Busivid during his uni breaks to help out and work on special projects.
TEDxSydney: Were your investors supportive of how you invested the St.George Kick Start grant?
Helen: It was so tempting to just absorb a $10,000 grant (which was the prize pool back in 2015) with every day running expenses of the business. Investors were pleased to see a “give back” mentality.
TEDxSydney: What would you do if you could do it all over again?
Helen: We’ve been invited to apply for the St George Kick Start 2018 competition. If we win, we’ll invest the funds in employing more disadvantaged youths. With a major prize of $40,000 in 2018 up for grabs, we can do so much more and build on the success of seeing Edward mature and “find himself”. It gave him the confidence and determination to be accepted and even take on a law degree.
Busivid has launched another app which is available in the Google and Apple Store, now boasting a significant improvement in stability and user experience. The Busivid team has continued to grow their capabilities. They now operate their own data centre and have 6 points-of-presence in the Amazon cloud that can scale to meet demand as well as providing a global video offering to clients.
Have you got what it takes to Kick Start your awesome business idea with St.George? Of course you do.
Visit stgeorge.com.au/kickstart to find out more and enter.