Demo Day is an event that usually occurs at the end of a business accelerator course. During Demo Day, founders present their business ideas to an intimate audience of investors, startup community members, and advocates. It is an important and exciting part of a founder’s journey, as it often marks their very first time presenting their business pitch to a live audience. It is also a special time for the founder to be recognized and celebrated. Demo Day is a win-win for all, as it allows the founders to showcase their hard work, talents, and business, and provides early-stage investors with a source of dealflow.

What do founders gain?

Demo Day is a premier opportunity for founders, especially first-time founders, to announce, present, and/or–in some cases–“demo” their product or service. It creates an immense amount of visibility for founders, which can accelerate their path to new connections, warm introductions, PR, investment, and more.  

Usually attending investors and community builders have volunteered their time, and hope to see the graduating founders present their traction and plans during the event.

Why would an investor attend?

Dealflow. Dealflow. Dealflow. For investors who enjoy early-stage investing, Demo Day is the time to see, meet, and network with up-and-coming innovators who are or will be seeking capital. Since most Demo Day founders are in the very early stages, this is an exceptional opportunity for angel investors who are looking to write smaller checks.

Demo Day is also a wonderful occasion for investors to give back to the community. Showing up to judge, ask questions, mentor, make connections, and network are great ways to support founders and the business community overall. 

Community Building

There are a lot of people in the startup orbit that love a good Demo Day because they can  see what innovation is taking place in their community, but also be inspired to set out and increase their support or even launch their own endeavor.

What to Expect

Each Demo Day can be different, but the goal is almost always the same: founders get time to tell their story to their community, potential investors, and prospective partners–with the intention of continuing to gain traction through relationship building.

Why Stella Hosts Demo Days

No matter what your reason, Demo Day is a wonderful opportunity to get a pulse on what’s coming. At Stella, a business accelerator that has helped nearly 400 women launch and scale their businesses through courses, advisement and access-to-capital events, we host Demo Days to showcase women-led companies from across the United States.

About Raven O’Neal

Raven O’Neal is on a mission to elevate women in business (and life, in general). In my roles as the Chief Executive Officer of Stella and Chair of Women’s Venture Summit, I provide founders with strategic solutions, business acumen, and resources and information around access to capital, so they can launch, scale, fund and sustain their businesses.

Alongside the Stella team, she has empowered more than 500 female-led startups and helped facilitate more than $101M in funding.