We managed to fit 25 incubator and accelerator representatives from more than ten institutions in one grand room on Sept 11 to discuss the needs of local entrepreneurs and how we are, as a community, filling those needs. Another 75 or so other guests were in attendance to join in the event.
My accounting may be a little off, but we definitely saw faces from CID4, CSTI, RMI2, Montana Bioscience Alliance, Vail Leadership Institute, Clean Launch, Fitzsimons Biobusiness Incubator, Cleantech Fellows Institute, and Unreasonable Institute at the event. Since a 25 person panel seemed a little silly, we just sat down for a good old fashioned discussion. We came to the conclusion that there is a big difference between incubators, accelerators, and mentoring groups. We also determined that although many of these (often non-profit) institutions exist locally, there are still a lot of entrepreneurs who are not being served so the field of entrepreneur support institutions isn’t saturated yet. In short, we are all working toward the same goal of helping Colorado companies grow and succeed.
Four companies helped complete the evening by giving their pitch to investors: choozle, PrevoTV, Recruiting Sports Network, and Crystal Clear Rx. We’ll keep our eyes on these companies in the coming months as investors discuss their deals.
We also had an amazing sponsorship from Big Fat Cupcakes located in Cherry Creek. At one point, I sat down in one of the few empty seats to experience one of these beautiful cupcakes. Licking my fingers, I said out loud, “that was REALLY good”. My seat neighbor turned and said that he thought the company pitching was really good too. I was a little embarrassed that I had lost myself in the cupcake, but I’ll tell you, they have that effect on people.
We are gearing up for our huge Colorado Capital Conference next month in lieu of our monthly meeting. We will be at the EXDO Hall (34th and Larimer in Denver) on October 8th and 9th. Fourteen companies will pitch to investors in the afternoon on the 9th. We have an amazing speaker lineup including a very special keynote speaker right before the lunch hour on Tuesday. We can’t wait to make the official announcement! Ticket prices go up on October 1. Get your tickets now!