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Mike Fridgen, the former CEO of, now leads Madrona Venture Labs
Mike Fridgen, the former CEO of, now leads Madrona Venture Labs

Madrona Venture Labs, the startup incubator operated by Seattle venture capital firm Madrona VentureGroup, has bolstered its slate of advisors who’ll assist entrepreneurs in more quickly achieving success.

The board includes:

• Spencer Rascoff, CEO Zillow Group
• Darrell Cavens, CEO Zulily
• Jane Park, CEO Julep
• Raj Singh, CEO Accolade, Co-Founder Concur
• Dawn Lepore, former CEO of and Board Director AOL
• Oren Etzioni, CEO Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence
• T.A. McCann, Founder Rival IQ and former CEO Gist
• Jonathan Sposato, CEO PicMonkey and chairman of  GeekWire
• Andy Liu, CEO BuddyTV
• Mark Mader, CEO SmartSheet

Smartsheet CEO Mark Mader
Smartsheet CEO Mark Mader

The new advisory board — dubbed “Friends of Labs” — will help entrepreneurs land new customers and hire top employees.

“Adding this advisory group is a big step towards setting spinout founders up for success,” said Mike Fridgen, who took the reins at Madrona Venture Labs last year. “Founders take it from traction to scale — with help from advisors that have experience building multi-billion dollar companies from the ground up in our own backyard.”

Formed in 2014, Madrona Venture Labs calls itself a “startup studio,” and its goal is to help spin out new startup ideas quickly, taking those ideas from “napkin to traction.” In recent years, the firm has spun out companies such as Spare5 and ReplyYes, incubating the concepts at Madrona.

The concept behind Madrona Venture Labs is similar to Pioneer Square Labs, a startup studio formed last year by Greg Gottesman, Mike Galgon, Ben Gilbert and Geoff Entress. Gottesman worked for a number of years as a partner at Madrona, and now serves as a venture partner at the firm.

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