In March, I wrote about how BoxedUp revolved around sharing high-end video production equipment and enabling the $2.3 million seed round. At the time, the company founder, Donald Boone, stood out, so when I started tearing down the pitch deck, I knew I wanted to use BoxedUp in one of the episodes.

Today we look closely at the pitch deck that helped Boone raise the company’s first round of institutional capital.

I’m grateful to BoxedUp for sharing a completely raw deck with us – all the details the company used to raise the money are in it, so it’s a very representative deck.

We’re looking for more unique pitch decks to break down, so if you’d like to submit your ones, here’s how.

pitch deck

Slides in this card game

1 — Cover slide 2 — Team highlights slide 3 — Business cycle slide 4 — Market size slide 5 — Problem slide 1 6 — Problem slide 2 (shows equipment price) 7 — Problem slide 3 (problem as experienced by equipment owners: under-used premium equipment) 8 — Problem slide 4 (problem as experienced by creators: poor rental options and high price) 9 — Solution slide 10 — Go-to-market strategy 11 — “Previous customers” slide 12 — Target audience slide 13 — Business model slide 14 — Traction slide 15 — Projection slide 16 — Competition slide 17 — Market size slide 18 — Cover slide (“Where BoxedUp is going”) 19 — Roadmap slide 20 — Team slide 21 — End slide 22 — Fundraising use and progress slide

Three things to love

BoxedUp quickly demonstrates a deep understanding of its market and makes compelling sense why high-quality video and audio equipment makes sense.

As the company outlines in its deck (slide 6), a full set of video equipment for a high-end shoot can cost $100,000 — about the same as a high-end luxury sedan. You don’t buy a convertible for a weekend away; you’d be renting one, so there’s no reason you shouldn’t see it when shooting a music video.

An excellent illustration of bottom-up market sizing

[Slide 12] BoxedUp makes it clear that it has a huge beachhead market. Image Credits: BoxedUp.

On the 12th slide, the company does something very clever- outlines its beachhead audience. That is the first target group the company wants to target with its marketing efforts. Without describing it, it shows that it has enormous annual market potential (12,000 cinematographers carrying out 20-50 projects per year on a budget of $15,000-$1 million), with yearly spending ranging from $3.6 billion on the low end to $600 billion at the high end.

We can talk about whether those numbers are realistic and what share BoxedUp is likely to grab from that budget, but it tells me one thing for sure: if the founder can defend those numbers in one market, they have a large-scale venture in their minds. Hands.

From startup to scale-up

[Slide 13] Marketplaces are notoriously difficult, but the company avoids difficult questions by tackling the transition head-on. Image Credits: BoxedUp.

One of the really big challenges with marketplaces is priming the pump. Turo, for example, would be useless if it had no inventory, but it would be equally meaningless if it had no one to rent its cars.

Reaching an equilibrium point is notoriously difficult. Too many renters, and that side of the equation falls apart because it gets too expensive (owners are likely to drive up the price) or there’s no equipment available. Too much inventory and the equipment owners are restless because no one is willing to rent anything.

It’s a delicate dance, but BoxedUp has an elegant solution: solve the supply side of the market by buying a bunch of equipment that it can rent out. That means it can focus its marketing efforts on the tenants and control the experience. Once it gains traction, it can communicate to the supply side what it has learned and data on what types of equipment customers want and want to rent.

Traction, market segmentation, and storytelling

[Slide 14] Rapid revenue growth and smooth growth in both business models paint a good picture. Image Credits: BoxedUp (Opens in a new window)

I rarely have three slides in a row in these teardowns, but I wanted to emphasize how slides 12, 13, and 14 together tell an important part of the story.

Slide 12 explains the size of the market for the original customer; slide 13 shows how the company tackles one of the most difficult problems in a market economy (demand/supply imbalance); and slide 14 shows that the strategy is working. There is a split of about 50-50 between first-party rental (i.e., BoxedUp’s equipment on the platform) and third-party rental (i.e., rental on the market).

Of course, these numbers reflect the company in September, and we don’t know what has happened since. Still, if the company managed to maintain its growth trajectory, I would be very surprised if I didn’t write about the company producing a monster Series A round very soon.

Good storytelling and storytelling is critical to pitches, and these slides do three things extremely well: There’s very little content on the descents, so there’s no confusion about what the founders want to look at; they tell an unambiguous story; and the three slides work perfectly together.

In the rest of this teardown, we’ll look at three things BoxedUp could have improved or done differently, along with the full pitch deck!

Three things that could be improved

BoxedUp successfully answers some of the toughest parts of a startup story on the market in its deck and deserves big kudos for that part of the field.

However, other aspects of the deck were a bit more confusing to master.


I have been blogging since August 2011. I have had over 10,000 visitors to my blog! My goal is to help people, and I have the knowledge and the passion to do this. I love to travel, dance, and play volleyball. I also enjoy hanging out with my friends and family. I started writing my blogs when I lived in California. I would wake up in the middle of the night and write something while listening to music and looking at the ocean. When I moved to Texas, I found a new place to write. I would sit in my backyard while everyone else was at work, and I could write all day.