On a typical Friday at the Call Levels office I reply to emails in the morning, write our Feature Friday post in the afternoon, and tend to any growth related task that is asked of me throughout the day. As can be expected for an exciting up and coming startup, Call Levels gets invited to a lot of events. One event that I was fortunate enough to attend was CoAssets’ Expo for Property, Investing and Crowdfunding (EPIC) startup pitching competition during the first week of July.
To give you a little background, CoAssets is a fintech company focused on equity crowdfunding. Their annual EPIC event is their biggest event of the year and let me tell you first hand, they spare no expense. EPIC delegates included hundreds of CoAssets investors and stakeholders, several big name banks, and last but not least six promising startups like ourselves, from across Southeast Asia. The objective of EPIC was to foster an upbeat environment where the attending investors, opportunity providers, businesses, and startups could network and discuss business ventures at the luxurious Marriott Tang Plaza. For this year’s Expo, CoAssets spiced things up by adding a measure of friendly competition and audience participation with a pitching competition among the six rising new businesses represented in “Startup Alley”.
The startup pitching competition was a full day affair where we, the Call Levels team, had to be on our toes at all times. In order to win the competition (hint hint wink wink. We did!) we had to persevere through three difficult shortlisting rounds of pitching the Call Levels app. We had to use a variety of tactics to capture, convince and incentivize the varied group EPIC delegates that Call Levels was the best and most popular startup such that they would vote for us. I watched in admiration as our well-spoken VP of Business Development, presented on the main stage, rallying support from the crowd. He engaged the crowd by recounting a story about our Co-founder, Daniel, who had once gotten so distracted monitoring price data on his phone that when he finally looked up, realized he had been ditched by his dinner date. This was one in a series of accounts where Daniel needed the assurance that a price alert tool like Call Levels was working in the background monitoring the volatile markets so he didn’t have to.
As for me, a valued intern, I maintained my confidence in the Call Levels app as investors of various business backgrounds fired questions at me. Some questions were as simple as “What does your app do?” I could have answered questions like this all day long. However, the majority of others were more difficult. When I faltered, our inspirational and level headed Co-founder Cynthia was always there to support our responses. If you don’t know Cynthia, one thing you must understand is that she knows Call Levels like the back of her hand; it’s her baby. In essence, any investor who talked to her was instantly convinced that we were the best startup and would proceed to vote for us. It is honestly such a privilege to work alongside her!
In the end, it was a close call between us and a social networking startup called Flying Chalks. Given our team’s persistence, we managed to come out on top and win the $5000 cash prize. I’ll admit, winning the event was a major bonus and confidence booster for us; especially since it earned the whole Call Levels team a well deserved congratulatory meal. More importantly however, our presence at the EPIC event allowed us to get the Call Levels name out to hundreds of potential app users. I alone assisted at least a dozen people download the app, not to mention the many others who downloaded it by themselves. With user base expansion opportunities like this, we can only hope that we made our mark in Singapore, showing the event attendees that Call Levels provides an easier way to monitor the financial markets.
This lovely piece has been brought to you by Cassidy Wilson. Cassidy is a junior from University of Richmond who flew all the way to Singapore to intern with us! How awesome is that. She’s the adventurous sort, enjoys travelling, backpacking and the occasional extreme sport. Did we mention she’s a competitive alpine skier? That’s cool.