Bliss pitch deck

Bliss Pitch Deck Seed Stage Startup Pitch Deck

Here’s the Bliss pitch deck the team used to raise its $400k seed round in 2015. Bliss.ai raised $400,000 in two weeks, from 61 investors, through AngelList. They were live for one and a half years before shutting down.

Bliss is a code review management product. They allow you to set thresholds around the code quality (e.g. complexity) of code being submitted to pull requests, which allows engineering teams to release code faster.

Deck review

Positive

The deck is generally pretty decent. The team have fundraised before which helps a lot. They put together their first draft in just 4 hours. It’s not that dissimilar to this one.

  • Structurally, they cover all the key points, even one which is often not done; the ‘why now’ question
  • There is little use of text and good use of images in the Bliss pitch deck
  • The first slide says what they do which is best practice to me. There is also a phone and email number evident. The CEO mentioned he likes to talk to people in a blog
  • The financing slide does a good job combining the deal terms (including traction) as well as their milestones they want to hit. They mention $1m ARR which was the magical milestone for SaaS business at that epoch
  • The team slide is fairly good. But with half the page dedicated to investors is begs the question is there no one else on the team worth being there beyond the founders? But the text they founders use is compelling and shows they deliver resultspitch deck

Negative

  • The bliss pitch deck using headers such as ‘problem’ and ‘solution’ is a waste of space. This is better used making a statement to explain the content of the slide
  • The summary slide could be tightened up. It doesn’t really convey a ‘wow, factor’ or ‘there is a big need for this’ feeling. The latter is arguably a real reason that they shut down
  • The problem slide also doesn’t feel like a big problem to me. They allude to an issue but not the consequence. Limited visibility could mean… “no accountability to management.” I don’t know if that is an issue, but management likely pay for the tool, I imagine
  • The solution slide indicates the company looks like a FNAC (feature not a company)
  • The proprietary technology doesn’t sound defensible
  • Timeline – one gripe is they have an orange line and the date ‘February’ is denoted in the same orange
  • There isn’t really a go to market strategy, they just say they are focused on startups to get initial traction/ I like the quote from a CEO: “Having visibility into my code has helped me be a better CEO and have impactful conversations with my development team.” This is the key market they could be selling to in my opinion
  • I don’t understand why the ‘current focus’ slide needs to be there
  • ‘Ecosystem’ as a heading is a bit peculiar. This should really be ‘competitive landscape’
  • It’s missing a market sizing slide. This is helpful to understand the size of the opportunity
  • I think the slide progression and structuring could be done to impart a more compelling narratives

Reading material

A blog on their experience raising money in “How I raised $400,000 in two weeks, from 61 investors, through AngelList: Lessons learned through the ups and downs of raising money through AngelList.

A view of their business model by my acquaintance Mukund Mohan:

I had heard the term before and knew what it meant in theory, and tried to understand it in practice as well, but it always fell in the “nice to know” not a must know bucket.

Bliss.ai Pitch Deck

Don’t bother writing contact details on the cover. No one cares if you write confidential, so don’t bother.

Cover is solid otherwise.

Like it. This is what I call a one-liner slide where you explain what you do simply so investors know what the heck the deck is about.

The headers make me want to vom. Do not write ‘problem’ like you are making your way through a checklist. Write the fricking problem! Don’t make investors think.

The content on the slide is fine, but do you get the impression the founders are particularly insightful, that they truely understand the market and its problems? No. But if you need to get your deck done quickly, this is a decent way to go. Three is always good (rule of three). Visually they just need to add an icon to make the slide more engaging. It’s a small but simple thing to add.

Also, I would have the three problems on the horizontal not the vertical.

All the headers suck donkey schlong. Headers are so important!

I like the two boxes, it intuitively makes sense to me. It’s not the best slide ever, but there’s something to this slide I like.

They mention the dashboard, why not just show it?

Explain it and prove it… I’m not sure if they are trying hard to make out that they have ‘special sauce’.

Slide is structured overly complex.

The traction points are good for an early-stage company. The slide is just all over the place.

This is not a GTM slide. It’s garbage. Quotes are not a GTM strategy.

I’m not sure what the point of this slide is? Can you tell?

The slide is fine. I don’t know what they mean by ‘website’? Is that SME?

Do you understand the x-axis of line or code vs team? I don’t.

Also, how is this more business-focused? I mean they are tracking code. If they are solving a challenge for business people, then they should have explained this before.

Pay attention to detail “equityfinancing” is missing a space. I can also spot two places with double spaces…

Cover is fine otherwise. I like specific and quantified milestones.

Slide is solid. The founder descriptions are baller.

I personally don’t care about investors on the team slide, but maybe some people might. I haven’t allocated time to pondering this.

Why now goes in the front, not at the back. This is weird.

I like the logic of point one. It’s not proven though. But is this really a why NOW point? I mean why not 2 years before and ten years after?

Don’t understand how remote work ties to this business.

So the deck isn’t great, but they do some things well. I can see that they have made some effort, but not too much.

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