Startup Day Talk: The Alchemy of a Startup: Intentional Culture. A Story of Getting It Wrong to Get It Right
Kristen Hamilton is CEO of Koru, a Seattle-based company that provides career training and coaching to recent college grads. Before serving as Koru’s CEO, Kristen worked as COO of a global non-profit, launched mobile media devices for a Fortune 100 company, and helped take Onvia, which she co-founded, public.
Startup Day Talk: In the Belly of the Beast: Handling Your Self-Doubt and Thriving Through Challenges
Ben has always been a start up guy. Ben became the CEO of Cheezburger, Inc. after acquiring I Can Has Cheezburger? in 2007 and grew it into one of the largest humor networks in the world — while making a profit during one of the deepest recessions. Cheezburger has been credited with bringing Internet culture and memes to the mainstream. Ben credits the success of his company to the users and fans who create the content. His goal, and Cheezburger’s mission, is to make the world happy for 5-minutes a day.
Former Rivet & Sway CEO; Former Amazon Manager
Startup Day Talk: When the Rubber Skids Off the Road
Sarah has held various product, marketing, and general management roles in technology and ecommerce focused companies, including stints at Oracle, Amazon.com, and local Seattle startups. Sarah was most recently CEO of the online eyewear boutique Rivet & Sway and is now consulting in the startup scene. Sarah also serves on the local nonprofit Board of Advisors for CityYear. She is a graduate of Cornell University and Harvard Business School.
Co-founder & President, Concur
Rajeev co-founded Concur in 1993 just after college and has played roles ranging from product management to running sales and marketing to being the president and chief operating officer of the company for nearly the last ten years. In that ten years, Concur grew from $45 million in annual revenues to nearly $800 million per year, prior to being acquired by SAP AG (NYSE:SAP) for $8.3 billion in 2014.
Rajeev is currently a director on the board of Apptio, a leader in technology business management solutions, and of the Seattle Children’s Hospital Foundation.
Co-founder & Chief Product Officer, Concur
Mr. Hilton co-founded Concur in 1993 and served as Concur’s Chief Executive Officer until 1996. He became Executive Vice President and General Manager, Concur Travel and Expense in October 2012. Prior to his current role, he served as Executive Vice President, Worldwide Marketing. Mr. Hilton was a director of Concur from 1993 until July 2008 and served as Chairman of the Board of Directors from 1996 until 1999. Before co-founding Concur, he served as Senior Development Manager at Symantec Corporation, an international technology firm focused on protecting information and computer systems, and as Director of Product Development for Contact Software International, a personal computer software publisher that was acquired by Symantec.
Once upon a time—circa kindergarten—Jason aspired to be the world’s greatest veterinarian. Alas, that didn’t work out, fortunately for us, he found another line of work. Today, he’s a partner in our Seattle office, concentrating on investments in education, e-commerce, and Web-enabled consumer businesses.
Jason joined Maveron in 2007 after a pioneering role in online education. At Career Education Corp., he co-founded and led admissions and marketing for IADT Online, a for-profit design school and wholly owned Career Ed subsidiary. Earlier, he was an associate at Spinnaker Ventures, an expansion-stage venture capital fund.
With both operational proficiency and a keen eye for talent, Jason has sourced and been actively involved in a range of Maveron investments—including Julep, General Assembly, Everlane and CourseHero.
Managing Parter, Ignition; Former Microsoft CFO
John is a 25-year technology-industry executive veteran. John has been a partner at Ignition since 2005 focusing principally on investments in enterprise software.
Prior to becoming a venture capitalist he spent sixteen years at Microsoft in multiple and varied executive roles, including SVP of Finance and Administration and Chief Financial Officer, Vice President of the Worldwide Enterprise group, Vice President and Chief Information Officer and Vice President and Corporate Controller.
John has led Ignition investments in Xensource (acquired by Citrix), Heroku (acquired by Salesforce.com), Parse (acquired by Facebook), Tier3 (acquired by CenturyLink) and Scout Analytics (acquired by ServiceSource). John also led Ignition’s investment in Splunk (IPO 2012) and currently serves on the Splunk board as lead independent director. John’s current Ignition investments include FiREapps, Datasphere, Motif Investing, Chef, Xamarin and Azuqua. John is also a member of the board of Nike.
William K. (Bill) Bryant is a Partner at DFJ. Bill has had early and instrumental involvement in more than 25 leading software, Internet, mobile, and digital media companies, as a founder, senior executive, investor, and Board Member. He has had founding roles with Visio (now part of Microsoft), Netbot (acquired by Excite), Qpass (acquired by Amdocs), Medio (Nokia), Mixxer, and Airworks. In these founding capacities, Bill drove definition of the core product and market strategy; raised >$150M in venture capital; recruited senior management teams; and built customer, partner and channel relationships in launching software products, Internet, and mobile services.
Bill was the first investor in Isilon Systems (now part of EMC) and an early investor in Swype (Nuance), Vizify (Yahoo), Banyan Branch (Deloitte), Loudeye (Nokia), AEI Music (Liberty Media), Viafone (Extended Systems), Teamplate (Captaris), Exstatic Software (Xchange Applications), Throw (Excite), Singing Fish (Thomson/AOL); NearMe (Hands On Mobile); and WebRelevance (Medio). For DFJ, he has led investments in Mpire (comScore), Varolii (Nuance), Clipboard (Salesforce), and Alpental (Google).
Co-founder of Ivy Softworks, Napster and Cloudmark
Startup Day Talk: The Hardest Thing to Get Right, How I Once Got It Wrong, and What I Learned from It
Jordan Ritter is an accomplished software architect and technical entrepreneur. His pragmatic ethos combines with a unique breadth of engineering and management experience to produce both a capable leader and do-er. His passion for his work is a point of pride that motivates and inspires those around him to exceed themselves. As a co-founder of Napster, Cloudmark, and Servio, his collective expertise within a diverse range of software architectures has helped create some of the Internet’s most well-known software.
CEO, Gravity Payments
Startup Day Talk: Entrepreneur of the Year Smackdown
Dan Price founded Gravity Payments with his brother Lucas in 2003 when he was 19. He grew up in rural Idaho, where he was homeschooled, and attended Seattle Pacific University.
Price has received many accolades since starting Gravity, including GeekWire’s Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2013, the 2014 Seattle Business CEO Excellence Award, and the 2010 SBA National Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
Price was also recently named Entrepreneur of 2014 by Entrepreneur Magazine, landing him on the cover. The magazine is on newsstands now.
Startup Day Talk: Entrepreneur of the Year Smackdown
Matt is the founder and Chief Executive Officer for Porch. Prior, Matt was Chief strategy Officer at Active Network responsible for 85% of the P&L. Matt joined Active in 2007 and helped grow its revenues from $65 million in 2006 to $420 million and a 2011 initial public offering.
Before joining Active, Matt was co-founder and Chief Executive Officer at Thriva, which was acquired by the Active Network in March 2007 for $60 million. Matt built Thriva out of his dorm room at Stanford University where he received his Bachelor of Science degree in entrepreneurial engineering and Master of Science degree in management science and engineering.
Matt recently won USA Today’s Entrepreneur of the Year award for his fast-growing startup, earning him a featured position on the front page of the newspaper’s Money section.
Co-founder and CEO, buuteeq
Forest is no spelunker, but a piece of advice from travel writer Tim Cahill’s adventures in caving pretty much sums him up: “Never exit a cave from the same opening that one enters.” You see, Forest is something of a nomad—albeit one who never backtracks. He has stumbled upon countless magical moments in the many countries he has visited and lived in over the years. In fact, it was this love of travel and cultural immersion that inspired him to start buuteeq.
Prior to founding buuteeq, Forest was a Sr. Director of product management in the Microsoft Server & Tools division, and later the General Manager of Business Development for Asia, based in Beijing. Forest also worked in the visual effects and CGI industry as both a founder/CEO of successful software startup Puffin Designs, and, added glamour to his geek credibility as visual effects editor/animator at George Lucas’ Industrial Light and Magic. He is fluent in Spanish and capable enough in Mandarin to negotiate fares with a taxi driver. He holds a BA in History from UCLA
CEO, Acumatica; Former Microsoft Corporate VP
Jon Roskill serves as the Chief Executive Officer of Acumatica Inc., the fastest-growing vendor of Enterprise Resource Planning solutions in the cloud. Previously, Jon served as the Corporate Vice President of the Worldwide Partner Group at Microsoft Corporation from 2010 to 2013, where he led the teams responsible for Microsoft’s Worldwide Channel of 630,000 partners, as well as associated programs and incentives. From 2004 to 2010, Roskill served as Corporate Vice President, Business & Marketing Organization of Microsoft North America, where he led the teams responsible for all marketing activities for Microsoft’s commercial products (everything except Xbox and MSN), products together producing revenue in excess of $20 billion. He started at Microsoft in 1993 as the product manager of the industry-leading development tool, Visual Basic.
Prior to Microsoft, he worked at Digital Equipment Corporation, in product management and engineering roles on projects including the Digital AlphaPC and Digital’s Fault Tolerant line of computers. Jon has been a Member of the Board of Governors at Boys & Girls Clubs of America Inc. since 2013, and he is an active investor and advisor in the Northwest start-up scene. Jon received a BSEE Summa Cum Laude from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and an M.B.A. from Boston University.
Executive Chef & Owner, Ethan Stowell Restaurants
Startup Day Talk: From the frying pan to the fire: Entrepreneurial lessons from the restaurant business
Ethan Stowell is the executive chef and owner of Ethan Stowell Restaurants in Seattle. He was named one of the Best New Chefs in America by Food & Wine in 2008 then chosen as a Best New Chef All-Star in 2013, and has been honored with multiple James Beard Award nominations for “Best Chef Northwest.” His food philosophy revolves around simplicity and excellent local ingredients—a philosophy exemplified in his book Ethan Stowell’s New Italian Kitchen, released by Ten Speed Press in 2010. That same year, he launched Lagana Foods, an artisan pasta line, and began consulting for the Seattle Mariners. His work with the Mariners helps to bring local foods and products into the stadium for fans to enjoy
A Seattle native, Stowell is devoted to his hometown and is committed to Seattle’s establishment as a national culinary destination. He and his wife, Angela, and their two young sons, live in Seattle’s Green Lake neighborhood. Stowell has long had a goal of creating community and enlivening Seattle’s many neighborhoods with his restaurants, and has done so successfully, opening restaurants in a variety of areas across the city.
Edward B. Murray
Mayor of Seattle
Edward B. Murray became Mayor of Seattle on January 1, 2014 and promptly set the tone for his administration by signing an executive order raising the minimum wage of City government employees to $15 an hour. That first move as Mayor aligns with Murray’s 18-year history as a Washington State legislator representing the 43rd Legislative District. Driven by his commitment to social justice and social equity throughout his career, Murray was well known in the Legislature for reaching across party lines to bring meaningful protections and resources to vulnerable populations.
Murray was the prime sponsor of Washington state’s historic marriage equality law, as well as the prime sponsor of the 2002 Safe Schools bill protecting sexual minority youth in schools and a landmark bill banning discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation signed into law in 2006. During his time in the House, he drove legislation that doubled funding for low-income housing.
Murray’s honors include the 2002 Human Rights Campaign Leadership Equality Award; the 2005 Anti-Defamation League’s Cal Anderson Award; the 2006 Distinguished Public Service Award from the Washington State Psychological Association; the 2009 Legislator of the Year Award from the Washington Council of Police & Sheriffs; and the 2012 Warren G. Magnuson Award.
Murray lives in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood with his husband of 22 years, Michael Shiosaki.
CEO, Unikrn; Creator, Microsoft Ventures
Startup Day Talk: Preparing Yourself for Entrepreneurship aka Fancy Unemployment
Rahul Sood is the CEO of Unikrn, a Seattle based gaming startup. Previous to Unikrn, Sood joined Microsoft in January of 2011. He created the first incubation fund for startups at Microsoft, and eventually Microsoft consolidated their global startup activities under Sood’s leadership. In June of 2013 he launched Microsoft Ventures.
A serial entrepreneur, Sood spent 18 years in multiple startups prior to joining Microsoft. He founded luxury and gaming computer manufacturer VoodooPC, which was acquired by Hewlett-Packard. Voodoo brought the ENVY and OMEN product lines to HP, contributing advanced technologies, such as commercial liquid cooling, and an increased focus on design.
He is active in the entrepreneurial community, helping and mentoring a variety of startups. Sood often speaks of creating balanced teams by bringing design + technology + business together to create beautiful products.
Bryan Mistele is the Co-founder, President & Chief Executive Officer of INRIX, a leading provider of real-time traffic information, connected car services and analytics worldwide. INRIX is at the forefront of connecting cars to smarter cities and serves more than 200 customers in more than 40 countries around the world. The company leverages big data analytics to reduce the individual, economic and environmental toll of traffic congestion.
As a leader on technology and transportation issues, Bryan has served as a member of the Bipartisan Policy Center’s National Transportation Policy Project, as a member of the United States Department of Transportation’s ITS Advisory Committee, and as a board member of the Intelligent Transportation Society of America. Bryan currently serves on the board of the Discovery Institute, a leading think-tank in the Pacific Northwest.
Bryan holds a B.S. in computer engineering from the University of Michigan and an MBA from the Harvard Business School.
Check out the Demo Zone — a one-of-a-kind spot for young companies to showcase cutting-edge ideas to the Startup Day audience.
Includes: A presentation table; two tickets to the event and a meeting with an angel investor or VC. (SOLD OUT) The top three companies from the Demo Zone, as selected by the VC judging panel, will get the opportunity to present their ideas live onstage immediately after lunch at Startup Day. The winning company earns a prize package that includes a coveted spot in the Demo Pit area of the Launch Festival in San Francisco in early March.
The Startup Demo Zone VC judges are: Geoff Entress, angel investor and venture partner at Voyager Capital; Prashant Sharma, program manager at Microsoft Ventures; Chris DeVore, partner at Founder’s Co-op; Len Jordan, managing director at Madrona Venture Group; and Joe Heitzeberg, president of Madrona Venture Labs.
And here’s a look at some of the 2015 companies in the Startup Demo Zone:
—Bloom is a mobile-first advice, care, information sharing and local goods trading network for women planning pregnancy, expectant mothers and new moms. Getting pregnant, being pregnant and being a new mom is an all consuming experience for women. It is a time when there is a strong desire and need to network/interact with other similar women. Bloom’s mission build an active community that is both fun and supportive.
—ILLUMAGEAR’s mission is to illuminate people working in high-risk environments, making them safer and more prepared. We build personal products that offer complete safety solutions. Products that increase productivity and reduce on-site accidents. Products that set new, higher standards for worker safety.
—EdRepublic: Ace your next tech interview. Practice and learn from a curated set of questions and answers. EdRepublic is the tool that will help many prospective techs land their dream jobs.
—ClipCard: Introducing personal search. Quickly get to what you need, no matter where it lives. Search in context, not silos. See useful summaries and get things done quickly. ClipCard makes a simple summary to help you find your things.
—OutToday: Get all your home services in one place. Electrical plumbing, holiday lights, pest control, cooling, appliance repair, carpet cleaning, and more. We’ll be OutToday or you don’t pay.
—Surefield is the new way to sell your home: 25% of the cost, 100% of the service. 3D home tours automate showings, you save big on commissions.
—RentMyWay: Renters, show landlords who you are and exactly what you need. Landlords, find the right tenants, what people are willing to pay, and how many renters are searching in your area right now. Property Managers & Real Estate Agents, welcome to our community of quality renters. Let us do the work while you get the credit.
—MendGroup is a Seattle based startup focused on creating the foundation for a complete cycle of care at the point of access. We are physicians, engineers, and business professionals united behind the idea of synchronizing the multiple elements in the cycle of care by means of a mobile health ecosystem designed for patients, providers, pharmacy, and healthcare facilities.
—SERPs: Large scale enterprise SEO platform. Run SEO experiments to test and prove your SEO work at any scale.
–IdealSeat: Data-driven ticket engine powered by the crowd. Searching for the ultimate fan experience? Our award-winning technology saves you time and money by tailoring results to your unique preferences. IdealSeat: Your seat. Your stats. Your game.
—Taste Monkey: With Taste Monkey (beta), you can rate wines and receive personalized ratings for wines you haven’t tried. The more you rate, the more familiar Taste Monkey becomes with your personal tastes. Ask Taste Monkey before ordering your next glass or bottle!
—Sous Vide Cuisine: Sous Vide Cuisine is the manufacturer of SousVant. SousVant is a circulating sous vide cooking appliance, more convenient and more versatile than existing products in the market.
—Employment Trust (E.T. Inc.) is staffing company that is Extra-Terrestrial. Our initial focus is helping high tech companies staff. We have derived a system that will allow the top talent to match up with the best companies. Our company is attempting to impact the staffing industry in a similar way Redfin has with the Real Estate industry. In addition to our map based search we have a referral program that we believe to be a game changer.
—Hour:Mine helps to connect medical practices with patients, both current and prospective. With its high touch patient communication services, HourMine aims to bring about more control and a better outcome for patients as well as a boost to the practice bottom line. The benefits to the medical practice include more appointments, increased patient retention, organic marketing and increased productivity at the practice with significant cost savings.HourMine is being well accepted because it brings complex services in an easy to operate manner that integrates seamlessly with the practice’s existing software systems and workflow. Customers also love our Zappos-like devotion to their satisfaction.
—UrbanBin has partnered with Gentle Giant moving and storage company to provide concierge, on-demand storage service to millions of urban households. Just let us know how many UrbanBin regular or wardrobe boxes your need and we will deliver and pick up for free. You can catalog and take photos of your belongings and request them back at any time. We can also handle oversize items such as bikes, suitcases, and surf boards, as well as entire rooms full of stuff. Never again rent an expensive self-storage unit or a van. Launching in the Spring of 2015 in the following metropolitan areas: Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco, Seattle, and Washington D.C.