After many sleepless nights with more work than we had ever imagined it was time for Launch Day – November 6, 2014. We were eager to show the 860 people who were expected to attend our final pitch, fifty of those being investors. It felt crazy that all this hard work came down to 6 minutes to present HowFactory.
On top of the nerves of our final pitch, Built by Iowa announced that they would invest at least $100,000 into two or more accelerator companies before the event was over. Yet, the first $50,000 had already been committed to an unknown team.
Being the first of 10 teams to pitch, Trace came out with incredible energy to the song “Down with the Sickness” by Disturbed. Alyx, the designer, ran the presentation she created behind scenes. Thankfully, we nailed it! And the standing ovation was all we needed to know we kicked ass.
After everyone pitched, everyone from each team was invited to the stage and final stories were told. Finally, it was time to hear who had won. Then the Iowa group announced that it was such a touch choice they pledged an additional $50,000, raising the amount to $150,000. With more money on the table the eagerness grew. By the end, it was announced that we were awarded the other $50,000!
The remaining $50,000 was split equally between the rest of the teams so everybody received something. The first Iowa Startup Accelerator class graduates all came out winners.