It’s not often that fledgling startups get the chance to stand in front of a group of venture capitalists and pitch their ideas.
But that’s exactly the idea behind the Big Idea Bash, sponsored by the Oregon Investment Fund and hosted by the State Treasurer of Oregon, Ben Westlund, Wednesday night at the Olympic Mills Commerce Center:
The second annual Big Idea Bash is a social gathering created to connect entrepreneurs to the organizations that can help them flourish. This year the event will feature a speed pitching session, creating a unique opportunity to present new company ideas to a select group of Venture Capitalists who are funding emerging companies in Oregon.
The judges will be a veritable who’s who of Pacific Northwest venture capital types, including:
“We invest in CEO’s who are focused and motivated with us to create value. Our experience is that focused leadership increases a company’s ability to gain market share, generate higher margins, and ultimately produce accelerated growth.”
“Founded in 1999, Buerk Dale Victor is a Pacific Northwest venture capital firm based in Seattle, Washington, that invests in companies across diversified stages and sectors. The Firm focuses exclusively on companies located in the Northwest, primarily in the business or consumer products/services, retail and financial services industries with revenues in the $5mm – $25mm range.”
DFJ Frontier (who just opened a new office in Portland with Capybara)
“DFJ Frontier invests in seed and early stage technology on the West coast. It is part of the DFJ Network, the most active venture capital organization on the planet. With offices in more than 30 cities around the globe, the Network has more than $5 billion under management to fund extraordinary entrepreneurs.”
“Our philosophy is to search out best of breed technologies. We do not focus exclusively on one or two technology sectors; rather, we look across all sectors to find those companies with the management and market to achieve explosive growth. We look to back visionaries and proven leaders with our capital, time and resources.”
“We apply an experienced hands-on approach with our portfolio companies, helping to recruit and build teams, advising on the development of product, business, and go-to-market strategies, and establishing productive connections with business partners. We all have operating credentials in multiple technology companies of varying sizes—from start-up to industry leader—and this experience base is the building block of our franchise.”
“The Oregon Angel Fund (OAF) is a highly structured, investor-driven angel fund, professionally managed by over 50 of Oregon’s most successful and influential Northwest business leaders. OAF operates independently of, but in close collaboration with OEN, which does not have a financial interest in OAF.”
“We formed our first fund in 1983, and have since formed and completed six additional funds. We’ve seen up and down cycles, open and closed IPO windows, bubbles build and burst. That said, we can’t think of a better time than now to start a company. Today we’re investing OVP VII and the OVP VII Entrepreneurs Fund, which together closed on over $250 million in 2006. The Entrepreneurs Fund brings leading entrepreneurs—many of whom pioneered venture-backed Pacific Northwest based companies—into the OVP fold. These industry leaders co-invest in every project we take on. They participate in the building of major enterprises by providing deal flow, contacts and seasoned insight.”
“The Pivotal team is dedicated to identifying and partnering with the most promising entrepreneurs to build leading companies primarily in the Pacific Northwest. We begin our investment process by sourcing and selecting the highest quality investment opportunities. We follow up by actively and collaboratively working with management teams to build companies that scale beyond the Northwest, generating long-term value. Our commitment is to building great companies and leaders in the sustainable economy that generate compelling financial returns.”
Voyager (who also has a Portland office)
“Voyager Capital invests primarily in early stage digital media, software and wireless companies, where the firm’s domain expertise…. Our “Go to Market” investment strategy supports entrepreneurs through two critical execution hurdles facing early and growth stage companies: Developing effective market strategies and building high performance teams.”
“Over the past thirty-four years, Walden has worked closely with top entrepreneurs in building successful companies that have generated hundreds of millions of dollars in market capitalization…. Walden owes its success in large part to the close relationships that it has formed with top entrepreneurs, many of whom it has worked with on more than one investment.”
“Yaletown leverages an extensive on-the-ground network to seek out the most promising cleantech and IT investment opportunities in Western Canada and we also selectively lead cleantech investments in the U.S. Pacific Northwest and the rest of Canada. When we get behind a deal we take an active, lead role with entrepreneurs, building teams and well-financed companies that can dominate growing markets. ”
Sound interesting? Well get your pitch ready. Registration for speed pitching begins at 5 PM, Wednesday. The event starts at 6 PM.