I’ve now had the opportunity to represent Kuli Kuli on TV four times. My latest appearance on CNBC’s Power Pitch was undoubtedly the coolest.
The whole filming process made me feel like a VIP, a far cry from my normal Kuli Kuli trips where I sleep on friend’s couches and spend endless hours passing out samples in stores. First of all, my soon-to-be in-laws let me stay with them in Manhattan in their guest bedroom (thank you Arthur family!). The first day of the filming, a black town car picked me up at 9am and brought me to the CNBC studio.
CNBC is the largest business news network in the US and is owned by NBC (you know, the peacock looking logo). Upon arrival at the studio, I was taken to the green room where there was coffee and pastries. I was too nervous to eat anything so I simply waited until they called me into the makeup studio. One woman blow-dried, straightened and then curled my hair. If you don’t know me, those are three hair-dos that I probably haven’t done since high school. Another woman spent about 30 minutes painting my face with make-up. I was pleasantly surprised that it still looked natural. In her words “it takes a lot to do this whole ‘natural look.'”
First I filmed the “Power Pitch,” the 1 minute pitch that I had practiced the whole plane ride from SF to NYC. The practice paid off and I nailed the pitch on the first try. They still had me do it a few more times, mostly to get my volume up. Believe it or not, you sound best on TV when you’re close to yelling into the camera.
The producers then edited the pitch and added in some footage of the moringa farmers we work with in Ghana and Haiti. I returned to the studio to meet the three investor judges, Kelly Keenan Trumpbour of See Jane Invest, Alicia Syrett of Pantegrion Capital and Nir Liberboim of Uprise Ventures.
All three of the investor judges were incredibly kind and asked thoughtful questions. They were a far cry from the “sharks” that you sometimes get at these types of pitches. I was thrilled that all three of them voted to go “in” on Kuli Kuli. As the producer told me afterwards, less than 10% of entrepreneurs that present get all three investors to go “in.” It’s great to have more validation that we really are onto something!