There’s a new class of startups in a new accelerator. The Oregon Enterprise Blockchain Venture Studio housed at R/GA in Portland has announced their first class of companies.
I’m always encouraging founders to celebrate small wins. And to take pride in the progress they’re making. So for once, I’m going to follow my own advice and take a moment to celebrate. PIE, the startup accelerator that I helped cofound and continue to run as general manager, is turning 10 years old in August. So let’s celebrate.
Here in Oregon, we’ve got more than our fair share of amazing consumer product companies. I mean there’s Benchmade, Columbia, Deschutes, Keen, LaCrosse, Nike, Resers, and Tillamook, just to name a few. And there have been exits from companies like 10 Barrel, Brazi Bites, Dakine, Hydroflask, Pacific Foods, Schmidt Naturals, and Stumptown that rival any tech exit. So why in the world don’t isn’t there an accelerator program to connect all of this knowledge and experience with the next generation of consumer products companies?
While Portland tries to provide a bunch of resources for our founders, it’s also nice to see other programs recognizing the value of the startups that are growing here. That’s why I was psyched to see that Portland startup Reimbi will be part of the 2019 TinySeed batch.
I always say that the “P” in “PDX” stands for “procrastination.” It’s all but a definitive cultural trait around these parts. But sometimes, we all miss out on something really special due to that dragging of the proverbial feet. That’s why I’m really happy to announce that — instead of closing today — the XXcelerate Fund’s startup accelerator, XXcelerator, is giving you another week to get your application completed.
Being in the startup acceleration and mentoring business, I do love me some status reports and updates. Even if that startup happens to be an accelerator itself. And that’s why I was happy to see this latest update from Mitch Daugherty on the Built Oregon consumer product accelerator project.
It wasn’t that long ago that global coworking giant WeWork announced that Portland — specifically the Custom House — would be a WeWork Labs instance. And like all startuppy things, changes are already afoot. In the past few months, WeWork Labs has been experimenting with its Portland presence and going through some iterations. And now, there’s a new person heading up the Portland efforts, Josh Carter.
Accelerators are nothing new. They’ve become a quintessential part of many startup ecosystems. But more often than not, they’re rather one note. Because the vast majority of those accelerators are only accelerating one thing: tech. But there’s more to startups than just tech. Especially around here. That’s why Built Oregon is rethinking the accelerator model to support consumer products companies.
Portland is nothing if not collaborative. So it would only make sense that a bunch of the Portland startup community would band together to help welcome the newest startup support organization in to town, WeWork Labs Portland. And what better way to show that support than to gather in celebration of the launch of the project.