Pitching a new business can be incredibly stressful or incredibly rewarding. The Pitch, a new podcast joining Gimlet’s lineup, puts listeners right in the middle of the process as entrepreneurs pitch their new companies to investors.
“The Pitch has the high stakes you expect from reality TV,” said creator and host Josh Muccio, “but you don’t lose the intimacy.”
The premise: entrepreneurs pitch their businesses in real time to get feedback and potentially receive funding from investors including Jillian Manus, a partner at Structure Capital; Phil Nadel, co-founder of one of the largest syndicates on AngelList called Barbara Corcoran Venture Partners; Howie Diamond from Ranch Ventures who looks for companies with a social-change agenda; Jake Chapman, founder of Gelt Venture Capital; and Sheel Mohnot, a partner at 500 Startups who sold his startup to Groupon in 2012.
“It’s unusual to see a project come in the door this fully realized and exciting,” said Matt Lieber, president and co-founder of Gimlet Media. “There’s a tension and a liveness that happens on this show that we really responded to.”
Noting that StartUp—which takes its listeners behind the curtain of what it’s really like to start a business—is one of Gimlet’s most successful shows, Lieber said, “The Pitch totally also fits in this space.”
The Pitch is technically in its second season, but it’s the first with Gimlet Media after the podcast revamped its format. The Pitch is also the second show Gimlet has acquired. Science Vs joined Gimlet from the Australian Broadcasting Company in October 2015. Currently, Gimlet has around 10 active shows uploading new episodes throughout the year.
In making a reality-style show, Muccio said he initially faced challenges choosing which businesses to feature and convincing investors to get on board.
“The founders are already in the middle of taking risks,” Muccio said. “So they see the benefit of broadcasting their message to listeners. We’ve been trying to find companies in their seed stages and investors to develop relationships with.”
Each season of The Pitch will take place in a different city. Casting has already opened for Season 3, which will be recorded in New York.
“I stumbled upon StartUp in 2014, soon after I sold my own startup,” Muccio said. “Podcasting intrigued me, and I eventually assembled a team of producers and editors who taught me how to do my own show.”
Lieber said that Gimlet’s most successful shows “are driven by the vision, passion and voice of a person with a strong point of view.”
“You can hear that in this show,” he said. “There are many different kinds of entrepreneurs, and Josh’s point of view is that entrepreneurship can be empowering.”
New episodes of The Pitch are released each Wednesday. The first episode is already available for download.