During the week preceding the 2018 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meetings in London, N’kenge Drew represented Antigua and Barbuda at the Pitch@Palace Commonwealth event at St. James’s Palace. The Pitch@the Palace initiative was founded by the Duke of York, Prince Andrew, in 2014 in order to help new start-ups and entrepreneurs achieve their goals. Mr. Drew is the owner of the local app known as TickeTing, an event booking and marketing platform. He joined young entrepreneurs from across the 53 Commonwealth nations and pitched to CEOs, angel investors, and other potential investors and business partners.
According to Mr. Drew: “Attending Pitch@the Palace Commonwealth was a very informative and rewarding experience for TickeTing Inc. He stated: “We were afforded a lot of developmental opportunities and were connected directly with some of the biggest global companies in the tech industry. Bosch for example has indicated an interest in helping us develop hardware for our new XPressCard system, which is a connection we likely could not have made on our own at this stage”. He added “We would like to thank His Royal Highness the Duke of York for creating the initiative and making it a huge success for all the entrepreneurs that were invited. Our High Commissioner, Karen-Mae Hill and the Government of Antigua and Barbuda for exposing us to this opportunity and facilitating us in getting there. Last but not least, our supporters from Antigua and Barbuda who took the time out to vote us into the top three for the People’s Choice Award.”
Prime Minister Gaston Browne and Minister E.P. Chet Greene both met with Mr. Drew in London. They congratulated him and his business partners for this achievement and wished him success in expanding the business model. The Prime Minister in discussion with Mr. Drew also expressed his interest in encouraging more young people in Antigua and Barbuda to develop as entrepreneurs and to participate in activities such as these in order to extend their network and positively contribute to the country’s economic growth.
In order to be eligible to apply to Pitch@the Palace, entrepreneurs and companies have to present products or services that identify in the following areas: Biotech and Medical Technology; Consumer Technology and Internet of Things; Cyber Security; Data Management and Analytics; Educational Technology; Energy, Environmental and Renewables Technologies; Fintech; Fitness Tech; Health and Wellbeing Tech; Industrial Technology; Materials, Substances and By-products; Media, Communications and Entertainment Technology; Robotics, Artificial Intelligence and Virtual Reality; Smart Cities or “Other” categories.
Once selected, participants are asked to attend a Boot Camp where they are taught how to pitch in a professional and convincing way. After the Boot Camp, all Pitch@the Palace winners travel to St. James’s Palace where chosen businesses pitch directly to members of the corporate, media, technology and investment world. In addition, every entrepreneur selected, whether or not they were presented with an opportunity to pitch at St. James’s Palace, becomes a part of the Pitch@Palace alumni network of entrepreneurs and receives ongoing support.