Way back when, I started Silicon Florist as an attempt to raise the visibility of a bunch of amazing activity I was seeing Portland tech startup community. Then, I helped start PIE—and continue to run it—because I felt that we needed to do more than talk about the community, we needed to help it grow through mentorship and connections. My motivations to help start Built Oregon came from similar desire to help the consumer product industries in Oregon. And now, I’m bullish on a new effort designed to enhance collaboration and innovation across all of those industries—and more—in Portland. Meet the Portland IQ.
There was a time, not so long ago, when Portland had an embarrassment of riches on the startup incubator and accelerator front. But as the pendulum swung from early stage to growth stage—and as regional offices and bigger players promised increasingly attractive wages and benefits—the once crowded incubator and accelerator community thinned. But all of that may be changing in 2018.
As we, as a community, continue to cope and process the recent senseless loss of Sam Blackman, many of our conversations have turned to remembering other amazing contributors to the Portland startup community. Contributors who inspired and impacted untold number of entrepreneurs. Contributors who, like Sam, were gone far too early. And of course, one of the names that has come up, time and time again, is Shelley Gunton.
While I like to drone on an on about tech startups, the truth is that there are any number of startups and industries that are thriving in Oregon. Perhaps none as obvious as the breadth of consumer goods — apparel, beverage, food, outdoor, tools… the list goes on an on — we have here in the state. But for all of the activity, there seems to be little opportunity to gather these amazing companies and entrepreneurs together. Until now. Meet the Built Up Festival.
I know that there are plenty of meet ups in town. Plenty. But one thing I’ve noticed is that they still tend to be fairly siloed. Either by skills. Or by industry. Or by platform. Or by something I can’t think of right now. So when Mitch Daugherty, my fellow cofounder at Built Oregon, suggested something that broke down those silos? I was super interested. Read More
It’s no secret that there’s a limited number of investors in Oregon. Which means there’s not a lot of crossover between the startup investment community—unless folks are raising. But there aren’t a lot of conversations, information sharing, or mutual understanding. It’s often just checks—or lack thereof. That’s why it’s always nice to hear from the investors, firsthand, about their world and what sort of things they’re looking for. Read More
This time of year, we’ve got any number of activities to warm the cockles of our capitalistic shopping hearts. There’s Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday, and Giving Tuesday, to name a few. But the folks at Built Oregon thought there could be room for one more. One that—like Small Business Saturday—would appeal directly to Oregonians. Read More
While my primary vantage point has me focused on the Portland startup scene, it’s always nice to check in on other awesome startup scenes in the state of Oregon. I was just in Eugene and Springfield to meet with a bunch of amazing startups at the RAIN accelerator and to hear even more awesome startups pitch during The Big Mix. But in the coming weeks, all eyes will be turning toward Bend. Read More
I’ve spent more than seven years annoying you with bad grammar and third-rate prose on Silicon Florist. And it’s been awesome to have the opportunity to meet so many amazing founders in the Portland startup scene. But for all the awesomeness of Portland, I also realize that Oregon is a big state. With even more amazing founders. That’s what attracted me to Built Oregon. Read More