Since I don’t think I’m going to manage to write any barnburners in the last few days of the year, now seemed to be as good of a time as any to share the year end recap for Silicon Florist. So what were the most popular Silicon Florist stories written in 2020? I’m sure you’ll be shocked to learn many of them are pandemic related. Let’s take a look.
- If you have fallen victim to a layoff, I’m sorry. Take a moment, take a breath, and then consider these resources.
Some of us have seen this before. And yet for many of you, this is a whole new experience. An incident occurs. The markets tumble. The economy starts to tank. The bubble pops. And then come the layoffs. It’s sudden, shocking, and paralyzing for folks affected. And it can be hard to figure out where to turn. So given the already escalating number of jobs eliminated in Portland, I thought it would be wise to provide a few resources that may be helpful in this time of need.
- Capturing a list of local Oregon retailers, restaurants, cafes, and other small businesses who offer gift certificates
In the midst of all this COVID-19 Novel Coronavirus insanity, I received a very clearheaded email from Livelihood NW, one of the entrepreneur support organizations here in Portland, with a list of simple actions that would help small businesses owners impacted by pandemic to survive.
- What’s the COVID count in your Oregon ZIP code?
Throughout the pandemic, many of us have been tracking day to day numbers for the state of Oregon or for our respective county. But what about more localized information like the number of cases in your ZIP code? Now there’s a site for that. Thanks to Jacob Fenton.
- Missing the daily Black History Month tweets about Portland founders? Me too. Relive them.
I’ve really grown quite fond of this tradition that Stephen Green started. Where once a day, throughout the month of February, Stephen has taken the opportunity to highlight one black Portland business for Black History Month. And this year, it got even better. Because Built Oregon joined in. And because we got an extra day.
- Concerned about the COVID-19 impact on Portland restaurants and food carts? Grubhub has a solution
Like many of us, I’ve been thinking a lot about our local food carts, restaurants, brewpubs, and coffeeshops in this new world order of social distancing and avoiding crowded spaces. How can we support these critical components of our Portland culture and economy without exposing ourselves and others to possible infection? (I honestly can’t believe I just typed that sentence. Oof.)
- Using the new AngelList “rolling fund” model, a new Portland based early stage venture capital fund emerges
I can confidently say that there will never be enough accessible capital to adequately support entrepreneurs. So we’ll always have that to complain about. But that’s also a massive opportunity. Because there is also plenty of room for new players — and new models — to emerge. And another one just did. From Sahil Lavingia, founder of Gumroad.
- Tracking pandemic induced layoffs at Portland startups
It’s practically inevitable. During a downturn, startups are often forced to freeze hiring and reduce headcount. It happens time and time again. And it’s a grim situation for anyone who has to live through it. But from a purely objective viewpoint, having a better understanding of the actual metrics can be an important part of understanding and projecting the potential for recovery from a downturn. So I’m sharing this layoff tracker so folks can keep an eye on it.
- Not to be presumptuous, but… would you want to grab a beer (or other beverage of your choice) with me, this Friday? I know it’s short notice, but I miss you
Happy hours. They’re a thing. For real. And not so long ago, there was a community happy hour that grew into a really, really big thing. And an important and formative thing. But it didn’t start that way.
- Help crowdsource a definitive list of all Oregon startups
It’s been a year, hasn’t it? Usually around this time of year, I’d likely be waxing philosophic about all of the amazing founders I’d had the chance to meet. Over coffee. Or a beer. But this year isn’t that year is it? (It’s not.) Which has me thinking that I have probably missed out on any number of amazing founders and companies over the past 10 months. And that’s why I’m wondering if it would be possible to get your help resolving that issue.
- Suddenly one Portlander — and one former Portlander — have a potential $50k startup investment burning a hole in their pockets
Now, it’s no secret that I’m a fan of Indie.vc. The way they’re rethinking traditional venture capital is right in line with the way companies are built around here. And their focus on generating revenue and founders retaining control has an appeal as well. So just imagine how much more of a fan I became when I heard that someone from Portland and someone who used to live in Portland were selected to help invest some Indie.vc capital.
- There’s a new venture capital firm in town
It’s always nice to see more capital focused on helping entrepreneurs around here. So it was a bright spot in all of this weirdness to see that there was a new venture fund in town. And it was an even brighter spot to see that the Oregon Growth Board had committed $350,000 to the new fund. Meet Include Venture Group.
- Searching for some positive news? Meet a bunch of new Portland startups. All from the comfort of your Web browser.
Clearly, there’s a palpable amount of negativity floating around, these days. And with good reason. But the continued onslaught can get grating, if not completely debilitating. So if you’re looking for something more positive — and you’ve already binge watched all the Arthur and Zoboomafoo episodes you can stomach — maybe consider meeting some new Portland startups.
- Top stories from 2019: What you found interesting — or may have missed — on Silicon Florist
With some of the holiday season celebrations bisecting two weeks in a row, it’s been a bit of a slow end to 2019. And a couple of slow news weeks to boot. With that in mind, I thought I’d take a couple of minutes to share some of the most popular Silicon Florist posts from the past year, if only to provide a reminder of what the community accomplished and to look forward to what’s in store for 2020.
I also found it interesting that these posts from the past were among the most popular posts, this year.
- Who are the most active venture capital groups (VCs) investing in Oregon?
- OsoEco shuts down
- Looking for coworking space in Portland? Here are 20+ options (with more coming soon)
- Unrated Director’s Cut: Complete unedited responses from my recent Willamette Week interview on the Portland startup community
- There’s a new seed stage venture capital fund in Portland, for Portland
Looking forward to a whole bunch of similarly interesting stories in 2021.