Buy low: How Portland got creative with funding for startups amidst an awful recession

To many folks in the startup community, the Portland Seed Fund has always been here. It’s become such a prominent part of the early stage investments in town. But it wasn’t always that way. And it took some foresight from a variety of local leaders to bet on spending when the economy was in the doldrums to make it happen.

In the midst of the worst recession in a generation, the City of Portland did something extraordinary. Without concern for custom or precedent, we created one of the first publicly-backed seed funds in the United States to invest in local startups.

What seemed natural and instinctive to those of us in leadership positions at the time has become a curiosity throughout the United States.

Patrick Quinton, former head of the Portland Development Commission, details the history of the project and how multiple organizations—then mayor Sam Adams, Skip Newberry who now heads up the Technology Association of Oregon, the PDC, Oregon Entrepreneurs Network, and the cities of Portland and Hillsboro—all came together to make it happen. And how its legacy lives on in new pursuits.

To read the complete story, visit Portland’s Way of Investing in Startups.

[Hat tip to Mitch Daugherty]

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