The Startup Conference took place on May 17th in Redwood City. This event gave many startups and founders the opportunity to soak up knowledge that will give them the tools to succeed. The energy was electric and there were rarely any moments where people weren’t laughing, asking questions, or networking. Throughout the day, the audience sat at the edge of their seats, listening with hunger in their eyes. Three cred clients spoke at this event - Lattice, Venrock, and Sharethrough. They each shared insightful wisdom with the crowd.
Jack Altman from Lattice took the stage amongst the first set of speakers, offering insight on the true struggles founders face. He noted that fundraising isn’t very natural, but there are a lot of resources online available for people following the same path. He reminded the audience that although asking for funding is tedious, ultimately, it’s a funnel to find out which investors really align with your company’s vision.
Ethan Batraski of Venrock took the stage with Soma Somasegar of Madrona Venture Group, Varun Jain of Qualcomm Ventures, and Martin Stroka of F50 for the panel of VCs talking about what makes a killer pitch that piques the interest of investors. Ethan, along with others, agreed that out of the four requisites - market, team, technology, and ability to execute (operational excellence) - investors would rather put their money in a startup that has the right team and market fit. Varun agreed that it would be ridiculous for investors to ever invest in a startup with a founder who has no business acumen.
Sharethrough’s Rob Fan took on the Scaling & User Acquisition panel. He spoke with purpose, informing the crowd that who you hire depends on who your consumers are. Rob shared the reason why companies can scale quickly is because they invest in their customer support early on. He also noted that utilizing word-of-mouth is an early-stage company’s best friend.
The event ended with 3 startups, who were chosen by the audience, pitching in front of investors. The startups that pitch are likely to gain coverage for their ideas and meet influential decision-makers. If you are an early stage startup looking for investors, this event happens every May in Redwood City- see you there next year!