As you embark on the journey of bringing your biotech products or services to market, creating a solid pitch deck will be crucial to effectively communicate your vision to potential investors and partners. Life sciences startups are uniquely challenging (as compared to most tech startups), given they often require significant capital funding and are subject to regulatory timelines that can be lengthy and complex.
Crafting a compelling biotech pitch deck requires a delicate balance: avoiding scientific jargon and speaking in investor-friendly terms can be difficult, esp. for founders with a scientific background. In this article, we’ll explore the essential elements of a winning pitch deck to captivate your audience and secure the funding your revolutionary biotech startup deserves.
What is a biotech pitch deck?
Pitch decks are an essential tool for founders launching a new business or startup, generally used for pitching investors (as well as presenting to retailers and partners, in some industries). Pitch decks for biotech startups are typically created to present to investors, grants, and commercial partners.
What is the purpose of a biotech pitch deck?
The objective of a pitch deck is to convince investors of the technological promise and commercial feasibility of your biotech product(s) or service(s). A well-designed pitch deck should succinctly tell investors about your solution, project milestones and why they should invest in your company.
What slides should a biotech pitch deck include?
Crafting a winning biotech pitch deck is no small feat: striking the perfect balance of scientific detail and market analysis can be challenging. This guide will walk you through the recipe for building an effective pitch deck: from creating eye-catching visuals that bring your vision to life, to ensuring every slide is concise and compelling:
1. Cover Slide
The first slide of a pitch deck is often overlooked by founders, but this is your opportunity to give investors an enticing glimpse into what makes your biotech company unique and create a lasting impact on their opinion that will last far beyond your initial meeting. Don’t miss out on that key first impression – you only have one shot! Apart from the company logo and eye-catching product imagery, including social proof (ie. a grid of notable partner logos) can help stimulate investor interest.
2. Problem and Solution Slide
Many biotech companies won’t have a problem slide in their pitch deck since they may solve a fairly obvious problem (i.e., cancer, viruses). However, a slide that speaks directly to how the product solves a large market opportunity is a ubiquitous component of any successful pitch deck, across industries. While it is important to highlight how your solution overcomes significant medical or biological challenges, investors will be more interested in the size and scope of the problem that your product addresses.
3. How It Works Slide
Biotech companies can significantly increase the impact of their pitch decks by visually demonstrating how their technology works. Using infographics and flowcharts to explain complex terms and information is an effective way to ensure that investors, even those without a technical background, understand what problem the company’s product solves. Avoiding jargon and using visuals to demonstrate the mechanism of action behind your solution is the key to communicating effectively with all audiences: investors, and otherwise!
Supporting research should be included to underscore the effectiveness of your innovation, but be sure to avoid overwhelming the audience with unintelligible charts & academic papers.
4. Competitive Advantage Slide
This slide should showcase the unique selling proposition (USP) for the solution, demonstrating why it is the best solution to the problem. Highlight pain points that competitors and incumbents fail to solve, and how your solutions succeeds where they fall short.
This is a crucial slide of your biotech pitch deck, as it helps investor understand the “moat” and “secret sauce” that set your company apart from others. The slide should also include data or research that supports your company’s claims of differentiation.
5. Market Slide
The market slide should demonstrate that the founders of the startup have a deep understanding of the demand for their solution(s).
Apart from analyzing the total market size and growth, this slide should also include data regarding the target market, as well as unmet needs that your unique technology is capable of addressing.
With a clear view of total addressable market (TAM) and strategic insight on how to capitalize on these emerging opportunities, your investors should be able to see your startup’s potential to become a billion-dollar “unicorn” in their portfolio!
6. Applications Slide
The applications slide is meant to demonstrate how your product or service provides real value. This can include information such as the conditions or diseases that the technology can treat, types of research that require your reagents or services, and the intended results. Investors will want to see that your product(s) or service(s) have broad applications in large industries (which translates to a large addressable market).
7. Traction Slide
The traction slide demonstrates your startup’s success to date. This should provide a snapshot of the company’s progress, including milestones such as patents filed / granted, stages of clinical trials, logos of notable partners and strategic collaborations, grants awarded, and other relevant accomplishments. Traction, intellectual property (IP), and marquee partners are all de-risking factors in the eyes of investors, which will directly impact the valuation of the funding they are willing to commit.
8. Clinical Pipeline / Roadmap Slide
No pitch is complete without speaking to the future of the startup. In the case of biotech pitch decks, the clinical pipeline slide serves as the visual of your biotech company’s future growth trajectory. This slide often showcases the startup’s plan for commercialization by visualizing it as a Gantt chart of clinical trials: from the preclinical stage to regulatory approval.
9. Team Slide
At the end of the day, investors are most interested in the people behind the businesses they support. The team slide should highlight the qualifications, achievements and expertise of the startup’s founding / management team. Using logos of former employers and short bios is the key to demonstrate your team has a winning combination experience to drive success!
10. Investment Slide
Your company’s request for capital and the associated terms of investment should be detailed on the Investment slide. Any notable investors and business partners who have already committed to the company can be featured on this slide as well. While some decks will include a detailed ask with terms, use of funds, and cap tables, others will simply state the capital goals, associated milestones, and plan for the next raise (a-la-Y-Combinator’s recipe).
11. Vision Slide
Apart from the clinical roadmap, investors will want to understand the broader vision for your biotech startup. Whereas the clinical pipeline slide speaks to product development, this slide can speak to go-to-market and growth strategy, as well as the overall mission. The vision slide should include an overview of how the company plans to expand the total addressable market (TAM) and the possibility of other uses or indications of the technology.
12. Call-to-Action Slide
The key to closing investors quickly is ending every pitch with a clear call to action. Always provide one point-of-contact and definitive next steps for investors who want to learn more. Your CTA slide should empower and motivate investors, providing them with the guidance they need for taking their next steps.
Tips for designing the perfect biotech pitch deck
Investors see thousands of presentations every year: elevate your biotech startup’s pitch deck to stand out from the competition by following these tips. Employ these simple strategies for crafting an impactful presentation that successfully conveys the value proposition of your company to investors – while leaving them wanting more!
- Use infographics & flowcharts: Visual representations of complex ideas make it easier to communicate your plans. Avoid using technical jargon and charts from research papers that can be difficult for investors to understand.
- Utilize analogies and visuals: Simplify technical concepts for layperson audiences by using analogies and visuals that investors can relate to. If investors can visually understand the benefits or mechanism of your technology, you can skip much of the technical background and jargon that will bore them.
- Focus on the market & opportunity: Investors are interested in the market opportunity and the potential for a return on their investment. Demonstrate how big the market is and explain why your solution is highly sought-after. Don’t spend too much time on how your technology works on a technical level.
- Keep it concise: Finally, a biotech pitch deck should be succinct and direct to the point. Investors have limited attention spans, so it’s essential to get your message across quickly and effectively.
Need help creating your biotech pitch deck?
Creating a compelling pitch deck will help your biotech startup secure funding from investors & grants and deals with partners and potential customers! To make your life easier, you may be interested in the Biotech Pitch Deck Template: an expert-designed PowerPoint template built specifically to help startups in the biology, life sciences, and pharma space: from new drugs & pharmaceuticals to biomedical engineering startups. Easily create professional-grade slides for your biotech startup — check it out here.