This week’s Pitch Deck Teardown comes to you from the PCB-laden confines of CES in Las Vegas. Today, we’re looking at the slide deck that video analytics firm Qortex used to raise a $10 million seed round. Qortex uses AI to help brands, media companies and creators identify the right moments in a video to insert an ad and maximize engagement, so this is going to be a fun one.
So, without further commercial interruptions or preamble, let’s get to it.
We’re looking for more unique pitch decks to tear down, so if you want to submit your own, here’s how you can do that.
Slides in this deck
Qortex has shared its 13-slide deck in full with just its client list redacted.
As you can see from the list below, the deck is missing quite a few of the slides that you’d expect to find in a fully fleshed out deck. There’s no “ask” or “use of funds” slides, no problem statement, no go-to-market strategy, and no business model or pricing slide, among others. To be honest, I’m a little surprised the company managed to raise money at all with this pitch deck, but the fact that it did manage to raise $10 million is a good reminder that the deck is only one part of the puzzle. The conversations you have and collateral you share outside of the deck itself are all part of the fundraising process.
The slide deck comprises:
- Cover slide
- Mission statement
- Team slide
- Market size slide
- Interstitial slide: “Focus on the media sector”
- Solution slide
- Product slide
- Traction slide
- Future plans slide
- Advisers slide
- How it works slide
- Entry into connected TV space slide
Three things to love
Besides the omissions mentioned above, Qortex’s deck has some weak slides, too. I had to dig deep to find things that I truly love or admire about this deck, but I did find some slides worth celebrating:
A stellar team of advisers
A large part of the fundraising process involves answering questions about edge cases and scenarios, and even the most experienced founders can feel a little stuck. That’s when it’s helpful to have an extraordinary list of resources to draw on — and your board, whether it’s an advisory board or your board of directors — is a good group of people to have in your back pocket.
And Qortex has surely collected an impressive group here:
Qortex is being strategic by spotlighting the media expertise on its board, notably the former president of ABC Television and ABC Studios. This is not just about flaunting an industry titan’s backing; it’s a clear signal of Qortex’s access to invaluable insights and strategic guidance.
Featured prominently on slide 10, this roster underscores the company’s savvy in leveraging high-profile confidence in its vision. This advisory board also features the brains behind Universal Sports Network and other seasoned startup advisers, making for a veritable brain trust.
Indeed, it can be a strong competitive advantage to be able to say, “I have access to a deep bench of folks who have done this before and have a big Rolodex to connect us with the right people.”
The biggest takeaway from this slide is that you don’t have to do it all by yourself. Fill the gaps in your knowledge and experience with a board, and lean on them to tell the right stories.
Show, don’t tell
Qortex demonstrates it knows how to communicate a story by quietly leveraging the power of video to show off its cutting-edge product. It’s a masterstroke in visual storytelling, showcasing not once, but thrice, the capabilities of its video analytics technology.
Slide 6 has a video offering a real-time glimpse into how the company discerns audience engagement and tailors marketing strategies accordingly. Slide 7 ups the ante with another video, this time illustrating the seamless integration of ads into the user experience. And slide 12 features yet another video cementing Qortex’s commitment to revolutionizing the intersection of technology and marketing.
Is it a bit much? Maybe, but it effectively answers many questions about how well the product works and the use cases it addresses.
A rising tide . . .
Qortex does a good job of showing that the global video analytics market is growing and could prove lucrative. That’s important: All VCs want to see that a startup is operating in a space brimming with opportunity.
Sadly, the company only tells part of the story here. Yes, the market is growing, but Qortex leaves out some important bits: How much of that market it can expect to capture, and what the company’s growth trajectory could look like.
In the rest of this teardown, we’ll look at three things Qortex could have improved or done differently, along with its full pitch deck!
Three things that could be improved
Above, I noted the glaring absence of several key slides that investors usually like to see in a pitch deck. But with this deck, it’s not only about what’s missing; the existing slides desperately need to be refined as well. Let’s look at how Qortex can revamp some of these slides to elevate its pitch to the next level.