Month: May 2017

Cascade Angels: 7 Lessons Learned at the First BendTECH Startup Resource Fair

By Julie Harrelson and Natalie Dent, Cascade Angels

Last week’s BendTECH Startup Resource Fair drew a crowd of nearly 200 enthusiastic entrepreneurs, not to mention more than two dozen well-prepared exhibitors. There was much conversation, lots of energy and — we hope — business ideas that may transform into Central Oregon’s next startups.

Our Cascade Angels booth drew a crowd, thanks to virtual reality demos from Zero Transform and samples from the Water Kefir People. We also learned some important lessons as we took time to tour the fair. Here are seven bits of wisdom we gained from exhibitors and attendees:

  1. There are a lot of people out there with good ideas. If you are just starting a new business and need some direction, contact COCC’s Small Business Resource Center. They can help you build a solid foundation and avoid costly mistakes.
  2. Wear many different hats, not many different job titles.
  3. You are what you tweet. When pitching your business to an investor, be able to explain what you do in as few words as possible.
  4. When it comes to hiring for your company, put an organizational chart together for what you need now, six months from now and three years from now.
  5. Creating a plan that describes the business vision, plus annual, quarterly, monthly and weekly goals that are revisited often can accelerate progress.
  6. Want to know what resources are available to you? Check out Business Resources of Central Oregon, a new directory of our region’s entrepreneurial ecosystem.
  7. Some of the most amazing people in the world live and work in Central Oregon.

May PubTalk Showcases Startups Locals Compass, DubsLabs, Odysys and Oregon Angel Fund’s Scott Sandler

There’s lots to love about Thursday’s EDCO Pubtalk. First we are excited to see many friends of StartupBend presenting including Zilaida Salgueiro, founder of Locals Compass, Eric Dubs, founder of DubsLabs and inventor of Versafit headphones and Bedphones, and Kent Schnepp, founder of Odysys.

The keynote speaker is Scott Sandler, fund manager for the Oregon Angel Fund.

According to EDCO:

OAF aims to invest $100M in 100 local startups that create 10,000 jobs in Oregon. As OAF’s Fund Manager for the past five years, Keynote Scott Sandler has been an integral part in making that happen. He also knows a thing or two about what makes a successful investment. This keynote will guide startups and entrepreneurs through different strategies for funding and how to choose the most optimal path to securing investment.
Here’s a bit more about Locals Compass:
With their official launch just last month, travel marketplace Locals Compass has started to offer personalized itineraries for travelers in their first market: Bend, Oregon. The startup taps into local’s knowledge using personalized itineraries that meet traveler’s interests. Traveling with kids in tow? An avid outdoorsman? A foodie with dietary restrictions? They’re all covered.
If you’d like to give Locals Compass a try, they’re running a special for StartupBend readers this month. You still have a few days! Eric, from DubsLabs, always inspires us with his inventions and general life hacks (ask him about his no email quest). According to EDCO: DubsLabs created the world’s thinnest headphones, perfect for wearing to bed to drown out that snoring partner. Their next product will utilize the same technology, giving athletes that use headphones a much safer option.

New Group Launches w/ Party & Mission for More Women in STEAM Careers

A group of pretty awesome women have started the Technology Association of Oregon STEAM (science, tech, engineering, arts and math) initiative and aim to kick it off right with a launch party on Thursday, June 1. The vision? TAO STEAM wants to form a network of Central Oregon professionals committed to creating a path for girls and women interested in STEAM careers — and a gender balanced future.

One of our favorite people, Maggie Hubbell, CEO of Agency Revolution and Chair of the Steering Committee says, “In the ideal world the term ‘women in STEAM’ wouldn’t exist. But, the reality is this issue does need special attention right now. We want to provide a supportive community that enriches the experience for women currently in STEAM careers and find ways to attract more women into these fields. Central Oregon has a lot of support around this issue and I believe if we work together we can really make a difference.”

Great Free Advice from These Experts at Next Week’s Startup Resource Fair

The BendTECH Startup Resource Fair is just around the corner — Wednesday, May 24 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. — and attendees will get the chance to learn from experts in a variety of fields. The 10-minute Free Advice segments begin at 5 p.m. and include:

  • Tips for Crafting a Winning Investor Pitch, from startup coach Pam Stevenson
  • What to Know Hiring Your First Employee, from BBSI’s Eric Strobel
  • You Can Get There From Here, Strategies for Entrepreneurial Success, by Cascade Angel’s Julie Harrelson
  • Government R&D Funding for Small Businesses, from Oregon Best’s Leon Wolf
  • Startup Financing Tips, from Gary O’Connell at Summit Bank

Check Out the First Annual BendTECH Startup Resource Fair

As a startup founder — or founder in the making — you have limited time. But what if you could connect with all the resources you need to start or grow your business, in one place? You can at the BendTECH’s first Startup Resource Fair, May 24th at the 1001 Tech Center.

What is it?

This fun-filled event puts all the resources you need to start or grow a business in one location. The fair features two dozen exhibitors, including:

  • Venture Capital, Angel Funds and Banks
  • Business/Founder Mentor Groups
  • Small Business Assistance Programs
  • Core Professional Services
  • Educational Organizations and Resources

For a full exhibitor list, see below.

Why do I need to go? 

You can conveniently connect with all of the best entrepreneurial resources that Central Oregon has to offer — all in one place, at one time.

What will happen at the fair? 

Basically tons of awesomeness. Each exhibitor will have a table, and attendees can walk the fair, meet and chat with each of them. In addition, the event will include:

Bend Startup Launches Kickstarter for the M.C. Hammie, a Reinvented Hammock

Wildish co-founders Rick Lee and Adam Allen have reimagined something that’s already good — a hammock! — and made it even better. The pair debuted the M.C. Hammie on Kickstarter last week, and they’ve raised more than $8,200 of their $15,000 goal already.

The founders plans to use the money to manufacture the M.C. Hammie. But first, what is it exaclty? It’s a three-in-one hammock, shelter and blanket. Up to eight of your very best friends can lounge on this thing when it’s spread out on the ground. Then, it pops into a little shelter and you can hop inside, or string it between two trees and ta dah — a hammock.

Rick and Adam started their company last year with another gear reinvention that they call Mr. Big Stuff (props for creative product names). That is basically a gigantic beach blanket that packs down into a teeny tiny pouch for travel. The duo sold 500 of the blankets in their first month.

Headed to Bend? 50% Off Locals Compass Travel Itineraries for StartupBend Readers

Memorial Day is fast approaching, and what better way to kick-off the unofficial start of the summer season than with a travel itinerary from Bend-based startup Locals Compass?

We are teaming up with Locals Compass, a travel marketplace that connects travelers with locals for personalized travel itineraries, to offer special discounts for StartupBend readers. Simply enter the discount code startupbend at checkout to receive 50% off your itinerary purchase.

Locals Compass is also offering free itineraries for three lucky winners! If you want your chance at a free two-day personalized travel itinerary, all you’ll need to do sign up for the Locals Compass newsletter here.

Whether you live in Bend and need help planning your weekend, have friends or family visiting this Summer, or don’t live in Bend but will be making your way here soon, a personalized travel itinerary is a great way to maximize your time and navigate Bend from a local’s point of view. The Locals are experts in outdoor, adventure and family travel, and can design an itinerary based on your interests, travel style and even food restrictions!