We just wrapped up our first event here in the new office in Cambridge. About 100 applicants showed up here and just like in Boulder last week, the place was jammed.
We kicked off with a discussion of TechStars and walked through how it works, what it’s like to participate, and what the benefits are. We entertained dozens of questions focused around how our mentorship-driven model works. Brad Feld led a discussion about the entrepreneurial scene here in Boston, and the natural evolution and cycles that have happened here in the last 20 or so years. Many of the Boston based mentors were around and they got involved by adding color to the discussion.
As in past TS4AD events, of the highlights was when several of last years founders showed up and entertained questions from the applicants for nearly two hours. Ignighter, Travelfli, and App-X were simultaneously wildly entertaining (judging by the consistent laughter they generated) and thoroughly informative. We always consciously stay completely out of this part of the discussion so that the applicants get only direct insights and experiences from the past founders. It’s always fun to hear their perspectives and think back on such good times.
The goal of TechStars For A Day is to facilitate a two-way interview. We’re not just picking startups – They’re picking us too. By attending TechStars For A Day, founders get to understand the vibe, approach, and overall style of TechStars. Sure, we’re learning more about them too, but we know that it has to be a fit in both directions.
The mentors came out in force today in Boston, and I sensed a real hunger and enormous excitement about getting started there this year. It was truly a blast meeting all these interesting companies on one day. As always, it’s going to be tough to narrow the field down this year.
Thanks to everyone who was able to make it to the event today. Applications for TechStars remain open until March 21st.