When it comes to helping people get their ideas going, there are few weekends that compare to a Techstars Startup Weekend. Fifty four hours of sprinting from idea to product and pitch. It just goes to show how quickly something can come together. And that’s why I’m always happy to hear about new and different flavors of the event. Like Techstars Startup Weekend Small Town Advantage which takes place this weekend in Independence, Oregon.
I’m lucky that I get the opportunity to sit at the nexus of passionate founders building early stage companies and the community of mentors who wants to support and bolster those founders as they strive to build the next great Portland company. While we all recognize that building a startup is ridiculously difficult, sometimes we forget that founders are suffering from any number of stressors and pressures, despite the stiff upper lip they project.
In the world of startup accelerators, there are two juggernauts: Y Combinator and Techstars. So I’m always happy to hear when a local company makes it into one of those programs. Especially when it’s the original Techstars in Boulder, which — at least in my mind — carries with it an additional prestige. And that’s where Bend startup LuDela will be spending a three-month stint.
While our only local connection to Techstars programs was a brief stint as the home of the first powered by Techstars accelerator, Portland startups have long had great collaborations with Techstars programs all over the place. With Portland folks heading off to Techstars programs in Seattle, San Antonio, New York, Chicago… the list goes on an on. Now, you’ll have the chance to meet with three different program leads to get all of your Techstars related questions answered—but without leaving town.
One of my concerns about the Portland startup community is that it often takes a significant amount of time for companies to find their way to an exit. And for venture funded companies, it’s all about the exit. So it was a pleasant surprise to see two Portland companies involved in an acquisition—especially when one of those companies was still on the earlier stages of growth. Puppet has acquired Reflect.
While it seems like the year has just begun, in reality, the first week in April isn’t that far off. But it’s a lot farther off than Portland Startup Week has been in the past. (We’ve traditionally organized the weeklong celebration of startups during the first week in February.) So given that we’ve got more time than we’re used to, it seems like a really good opportunity to make Techstars Startup Week Portland 2018 even more awesome than ever, right? Right. So let’s get on that. Like now.
Looking to spend a little time with fellow startup types? Hoping to bring an idea to reality in a short timeframe? Well, there’s no better opportunity to get something going—or collaborate on an idea—than Startup Weekend. And, as luck would have it, there’s one happening this weekend, down in Eugene.
Whenever folks ask me for ways to test drive an idea or find cofounders, one of the programs that is always at the top of my list is Techstars Startup Weekend. Why? Because it’s a 54-hour sprint that gives you a ton of insights into what it takes to test an idea, recruit a team, and build a product—even if you’ve done it before. Your next opportunity to get that experience is Techstars Startup Weekend Eugene.