UNIFEMGA Investors Forum

A community of passionate and driven OAU alumni working together for a better tomorrow.


UNIFEMGA Investors Forum (UIF) is modelled close to the reality television program, the Dragons’ Den, during which entrepreneurs pitch their business ideas to a panel of venture capitalists in the hope of securing investment finance from them.

Are you an entrepreneur looking to get your service or product off the ground or to expand into different markets? UNIFEMGA investors Forum would be running a maiden session during the Association’s 2024 Reunion Networking Dinner. The UIF is designed for UNIFEMGA Members and Associates and brings together Entrepreneurs and Halal Investors to ensure that Entrepreneurs get the best source of funding options that are not necessarily available from commercial banks and Cooperatives. UNIFEMGA would put together a team of Investors including the Abdulkabir Aliu Foundation (AAF) and the general UNIFEMGA family in a convenient atmosphere to review Entrepreneurs business pitches and take up offers of equity and or investments in the different Entrepreneur businesses.

Entrepreneur to Investor Business Pitch

A typical pitch consists of you introducing yourself, presenting your concept/service/product, stating how much investment you need, and the percentage of your business/equity you are willing to give in return. Providing your business pitch at the UIF would provide you the unique opportunity to access capital potential on offer from the Investor groups and the general membership of UNIFEMGA. You may also detect, and or develop the partnership, supply chain and or distribution network that could carry your business to the next level. If you’re preparing for your Investors pitch, here are some of our top tips:

Key Points to a Successful Business Pitch

  • Inventors/entrepreneurs must be able to make a sales pitch of their product, the market and their management in such a way that makes potential investors confident in the returns to expect and the future potential of the business.
  • Entrepreneurs in return for Investors investment, provide the Investors option of equity in their business, and or Investment into their business.
  • Unsuccessful pitches are usually the result of a lack of detailed or convincing business presentation, and or products or market that are not convincing that would give the needed returns, and or poor business financials.
  • Successful pitches are the result of well-prepared presentations, products with a substantial market value, and entrepreneurs/investors who are passionate and committed to their product.
  • It has been known for products and or businesses rejected by a group of Investors to go on to become big success. Thus, failing to convince at a session is not the end in itself but an opportunity to learn and improve upon the business practice and presentation etc.
  • Entrepreneurs must ensure that they conduct proper market research, competitor analysis, and feasibility studies from early on in their product/service design process.
  • Know your product inside out: Who are your competitors, and what makes you different?
  • Understand your market: Who are your customers, and is there room for growth?
  • Bring something tangible to the presentation: Do you have a prototype or visual you can show? Do you have a history in this business and are invested in it?
  • Know your numbers: What’s the difference between your gross and net profit? Don’t make up what you don’t know?
  • Be honest and transparent: Do you have any debts, other investors, or associated risks?
  • Demonstrate your passion and commitment: Don’t be rude or argumentative. It is not about emotion, what makes money would sell itself.
  • Be prepared to negotiate: What is the most equity percentage you’ll give for investment? Do you want to own 100% of a N10m company or 40% of a N100m company?
  • Swallow your pride: What are your weaknesses, and where do you need help?

Regardless of whether you’re preparing a Dragons’ Den pitch or not, following these tips will help you in any scenario where you’re presenting a proposal for investment, funding, or financing.

Preparing a UNIFEMGA Investors Forum’s pitch

Unlike when you apply for a bank loan or government grant etc, at the UIF you are requesting Investor Groups and members to invest their time, money, and business acumen in your business idea. UNIFEMGA Investors and Members are interested in different business areas and have expertise in different areas (e.g. Medical Services, Agriculture (Poultry, fishing, farming etc), IT, Commerce, Fashion, Food processing, Catering, and or Entertainment etc). Ensure that you craft a pitch that will resonate or appeal to specific business areas.

Your pitch must address the needs of investors, i.e., how they will make a return on their investment. Investors also want to know:

  • Why they should invest in your business and not another person or business.
  • What in particular they can bring to the table – besides money – that will make your business succeed?
  • Are they right fit for your company?
  • Is there an exit strategy? Investors aim to get certain levels of returns over the next 3-5 years – how do you plan on making that happen?

Who can apply?

UNIFEMGA Members and Students and Staff of OAU who must be sole or part owners of the business. Applications are to be submitted on or before the 30th of April, 2024. Applications are to be sent to nunifemga@gmail.com in the form of either a word document and or presentation. Word document limited to 1500 words and presentation limited to 7 slides.  The UIF (Dragons Den) event would take place on Friday 17th May at OAU during the Networking Dinner event of the 2024 Reunion Conference.

Investor Enquiries for Decision Making

Investors are likely to interrogate Entrepreneurs around the following items to understand the proposal and make decision on whether to invest or not

It is crucial to thoroughly understand your target market, including who your customers are and how much they are willing to pay for your product or service. Investors will want to know if there is enough demand for your product or service to make it profitable. Do not base your business on wishful thinking or assumptions like ‘People want to buy bread”, “demand for catering service is huge”, “Trust me, I have been running this business for years and always make profit” etc.

  • Who is your competition? What makes your product better?
  • Does your idea or product have the capacity for growth?
  • If your product is already on the market, who has been buying it, and how much have you sold?
  • If you have stockiest or substantial buyers interested in buying your product once completed, do you have a letter of intent?
  • Do you have the right government and industry license etc? NAFDAC, CBN etc. If not, have you applied for one, and where are you with the process?

Who are your suppliers and how well do you know the best place to stock for your raw materials etc

Visuals such as photos, bring pitches alive while also giving potential Investors something tangible they can interact with. Also, adding stories or anecdotes about products or services adds emotional appeal, encouraging Investors to invest much more willingly.

Besides the product or idea, you’re presenting, don’t forget that a key ingredient you’re putting on the table is yourself! Investors hardly invest in “scruffy or unorganized people”. Thinking that your product speaks for itself and that you don’t have to look the part would be a mistake.

A common cause for an unsuccessful pitch is applicants with poor bookkeeping practice and not knowing or understanding their business financials. Investors require precise and accurate figures regarding the market size, manufacturing costs, retail prices, turnover, margins, gross and net profits, etc. Not knowing any of these answers never goes down well, and it will cause you to fumble and lose confidence – making it difficult to bounce back.

Another issue that many unsuccessful pitches need to improve upon is over-inflating their valuations and having year-on-year turnovers that are hugely optimistic – assuming a flat demand all through the year or constant increasing demand year-on-year. When preparing a Investors’ pitch, remember that overly ambitious turnover figures are off-putting and will be spotted – potentially resulting in you losing out and not receiving any offers.

You will establish that you are reliable and trustworthy if you’re honest. Nobody will invest in your business without scrutinizing the necessary details. Be upfront, from the beginning, about any debts, other investors, or any associated risks that need to be disclosed. When you are truthful, you would be consistent.

Go into negotiations with an idea of what percentage stake in your business you are willing to give away and how much money you need to be injected into your business model for it to succeed. Having these figures ready when you’re preparing for your UIF pitch will help ensure a successful outcome for everyone involved.

Understand that the higher the risk investors are being asked to take, the higher the equity percentage or returns they would want in return. The one investing N10m for 10% equity or 15% return is different from who is willing to invest N25m for 30% or 40% return. Remember that there’s more than money on the table when negotiating. Investors may also bring in their distribution networks, business contacts, and market expertise into your business to ensure its growth.

Have a clear idea of your weaknesses, where to improve, and what you need help with. By acknowledging the gaps in your skillset, you’ll demonstrate your maturity and ability to fill those gaps with an Investor who has what you lack.

Preparing for your UIF pitch takes time, practice, and confidence in yourself and your product. Being well-prepared, business savvy, confident, and enthusiastic, is key for success. Once you have all of the information you need for your Investor pitch ready, you should make out time to practice your pitch. Make sure that your pitch concisely explains why you believe in your product or service and why potential investors should too. Remember that you have limited time to convince the Investors so make sure every second counts. Avoid the following in making your pitch:

  • Avoid jargon. Don’t feel the need to fill your pitch with industry buzzwords that don’t mean anything.
  • Don’t be patronizing, but don’t assume that they will know all the terminology about your area of business.
  • Don’t over-explain yourself or include details that aren’t significant or relevant.

Even if a business pitch to potential investors does not go the way you planned, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the end of the road. Many entrepreneurs have since gone on to huge successes after being turned down by some investors.

Either way, doing your research before getting heavily invested in a product, idea, or concept and conducting proper feasibility studies is an essential starting point.

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About Us

UNIFEMGA – Obafemi Awolowo University Muslim graduate Association is an organisation that caters for the needs of OAU muslim graduates.