Live from CES 2014: UP Global at Eureka Park

It’s been a busy few days at CES already; here’s just a few highlights from our programming:

Yesterday’s panel on startup policy talked about the impact of policy on startups and major shifts in government policy that relates to startups all over the United States. Panelists were Michael McGeary of Engine Advocacy, John Dearie, author of Where the Jobs Are, and Ruth Hedges of Unismart Capital Software.

Panelists remarked that, across the board, the issues that startups face that could be resolved or treated with policy changes include:

  • A skills gap

  • The high school denigration problem

  • Over-regulation

  • Tax complication and reform

  • Broad economic uncertainty

  • The uncertainty of Washington

  • The fiscal cliff, debt ceiling

“We need a symbiotic relationship between the edu establishment and the business community.”  – John Dearie, Co Author of “Where the Jobs Are”

This morning, we heard from Brian Cohen of New York Angels, Shari Foldes of DFJ VC, and Kate Drane of indiegogo on the topic of ‘Startup Funding’ with guest host T.A. McCann, founder of Rival IQ.

Here are a few highlights from the panel today:

On entrepreneurs and belief:

  • “Belief has a story behind it.” – Brian

  • “If you can share the belief in what you see […] If you can sell the belief, you can sell much more than that.”

  • “So much of angel investing is about believing in the person.” – Brian

On funding and marketing:

  • “Contributions bring you press, press doesn’t necessarily bring you contributions.” – Kate

  • “Social is really important; it amplifies the company’s mission and vision.” – Shari

  • “The founder should be deeper into the thought of their customer. That’s where the social aspect comes in.” – Brian

On the added value of angel investors:

  • “Sometimes the best value an angel investor can provide is being your devil’s advocate. That’s what you want. Not being coddled.” – Brian

  • “The biggest value from an angel is to make it clear to you that the biggest thing we’re interested in is making money. And if we make money, you make money. And we only make money if you exit. Always add the ‘E’.” – Brian

Final words:

  • “Always prepare and know who your market is.” – Kate

  • “Create campaigns you’re proud of, because it will become a lasting part of your marketing collateral.” – Kate

  • “If you’re not close and in tune with your customer, I’m not interested. Know your customers intimately.” – Brian

  • “You have to build customer engagement into your development process. What are you doing on an ongoing, regular basis that engages with customers?” -T.A.


This afternoon, we’re hosting our third panel – “Founders Helping Startups” – and a pitch competition with mentoring and prizes. Stop by the UP Global desk to sign up for the competition and click here for more information on our programming.

CES 2014: Eureka Park – Updated Schedule for UP Global Live

Tuesday, January 7, 2014 – DAY 1

UP Global Ambassador: Gavin Gillas – Startup Weekend Austin Organizer and Facilitator

10 – 6      UP Global LIVE


Michael McGeary – Engine Advocacy

John Dearie – Co-Author: Where the Jobs Are

Ruth Hedges – Unismart Capital Software

3:40        Office Hours with Panelists


Wednesday, January 8, 2014 – DAY 2

UP Global Ambassador:  Startup Weekend Las Vegas Organizers Thomas Knoll  and Shavonna Tiera

9 – 6           UP Global LIVE

11:00           PANEL #2: FUNDING YOUR STARTUP

T.A. McCann (host) – Founder, Rival IQ

Brian Cohen – Partner, New York Angels

Shari Foldes – Director of Marketing, DFJ VC

Kate Drane – Marketing & Partnerships, indiegogo

11:40           Office Hours with Panelists


Scott Case (host) – Founding CEO of the Startup America Partnership

Benjamin Forman – Co-Founder, ZBoard

Trey Bowles – CEO / Co-Founder, the DEC

Thomas Knoll – CEO / Founder, clipPR

4:30            EUREKA PARK PITCH CHALLENGE (60 Minutes)

Pitch to a panel of Iconic Entrepreneurs! Receive feedback and a chance to win some great prizes. Register for this event by visiting UP Global LIVE by 3PM on Wednesday, January 8th.

Thursday, January 9, 2014 – DAY 3

UP Global Ambassador: Trey Bowles – Chairman of Startup Texas / SUAP Champion

9 – 6          UP Global LIVE

11:00          PANEL #4: MEDIA

Scott Case (host) – Founding CEO of the Startup America Partnership

Tim Stevens – Feature Writer, CNET

Jason Gilbert –  Editor, Yahoo! Tech

Jen Consalvo – Editor, Tech Cocktail

11:40          Office Hours with Panelists

3:00           SPEAKER SESSION

Scott Case (host) – Founding CEO of the Startup America Partnership

Bre Pettit – CEO, MakerBot

CES 2014: UP Global LIVE at Eureka Park

UP Global will be at CES this year and we look forward to seeing you!

The UP Global LIVE stage in Eureka Park will be hosting startup-focused programming during CES.  Our panelists will be taking tours through Eureka Park prior to their programs to meet with the community. They’ll also be hosting office hours directly after each of the panels.  Visit our UP Global LIVE Office in Eureka Park (Venetian – First Floor – Marco Polo) for more details and to sign up for Office Hours.  Please continue to check back for updates to this schedule.  

Sign up for Startup Digest now to take advantage of this great opportunity!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014


3:00           PANEL #2 – THE MAKER MOVEMENT

Wednesday, January 8, 2014 

11:30         PANEL #3 – CAPITAL



Thursday, January 9, 2014

11:30         PANEL #5 – MEDIA 

3:00          SPEAKER SERIES

Office Hours will be held with panelists, sponsors and partners immediately following each panel.  You can sign up for Office Hours on-site at UP Global LIVE. Once all moderators and panelists have been confirmed for each panel, they will be listed in the above schedule with appropriate links.  You do not need to register for the panel sessions.  They are open to all registered exhibitors and badged attendees.  


Community Leader of the Week: Tina Peterson

This week’s Community Leader is Tina Peterson from Kansas City, Missouri!

Tina Peterson

Here’s why she makes a huge impact on her local community:

She’s extremely active in a variety of programs in her area.
–          She’s a Board Member of KC Women in Technology
–          Founding Member of Athena League
–          Mentor for the Sprint Mobile Health Accelerator
–          Lead Organizer for KC Startup Weekend
–          SQL Saturday Organizer
–          KC Geek Night and 1MC ( One Million Cup ) regular
And she’s been a part of some impressive accomplishments in the startup world…
–          Sprint and Techstars Launch Startup Accelerator for Mobile Health
–          Sprint Joins With UP Global To Support Entrepreneurship And Innovation
–          Pipeline Announces Sprint to Join as Top-Level Corporate Partner
–          Sprint supports expansion of Silicon Prairie News to Kansas City
–          Sprint’s Student Innovation Experience
–          Digital Sandbox KC

Here are some words of wisdom from Tina herself:

Probably the most consistent question I get asked is How did you do … [fill in the blank] ? When you take away all the details of the responses I’ve given to this question, it boils down to one simple response, I started doing something. I didn’t always know what I was getting into or how I would get it done but in the end, it wouldn’t have happened if I didn’t decide to do something. So my advice to you is believe in yourself and start doing something.

And her own personal ‘desktop manifesto’:


Nominate and vote for your most impactful startup community leaders!

To nominate leaders and vote: Most Impactful Startup Community Leaders 

Helping entrepreneurs build companies, create jobs, and raise the standard of living is what I find to be the most rewarding experience of my life. I have a tremendous amount of respect for community leaders in the startup ecosystem who are working tirelessly to spur startup activity in multiple communities, and in many cases globally. I’d like to begin recognizing leaders of the community in order to magnify the impact startup community leaders are making, so collectively we can lead by example.

David Cohen, Techstars

David Cohen, Techstars

I recently read a book called ‘Switch, How to change things when change is hard.’ What I learned was the one way to drive change is to shine the spotlight on people and programs that are working well in order to encourage similar behavior.

I’ve put this list together to do just that, shine the spotlight on startup community leaders to encourage more people in the community to strive to make an impact on their own startup community.

Please share and vote for who you think is the most impactful startup community leader. We’ll do a follow up list if this catches on. For now, I think it’s best if we measure impact based on the number of people being impacted by these leaders, perhaps number of companies launched is another factor to consider when voting.

This list is admittedly a bit U.S. centric (this time). Thanks to everyone including many who aren’t on this list who have dedicated themselves to helping entrepreneurs achieve greatness.

– Shahab Kaviani

Co-Founder, CoFoundersLab


Share community leader nominations and vote here.


Community Leader of the Week: Kathleen Fritzsche

We’re proud to honor this week’s Community Leader of the Week: Kathleen Fritzsche from Stuttgart, Germany!


Kathleen first got involved with Startup Weekend 3 years ago when she attended a SW in Stuttgart, Germany. She says, “Since then, my life completely turned around: I began to co-organize and attend Startup Weekends as well as Facilitating.”

  • She has since founded a startup blog: StartUp Stuttgart
  • She Co-Founded a company called Accelerate Stuttgart with Johannes Ellenberg and Harald Amelung – the company aims to support entrepreneurs in their respective regions through mentorship, connections, and more.
By still volunteering for Startup Weekend, I try to give back to the community, showing how a self-determined startup career can be an alternative to a corporate employee life.


Life begins at the end of your comfort zone, step by step.


Startup Diplomacy, the Next Big Thing for American Soft Power

The following is an article by David T. Killion, United States Ambassador to UNESCO, and was originally published on Huffington Post.

The United States has long drawn on American culture to advance its foreign policy goals: jazz diplomacy was critical to countering Soviet propaganda during the Cold War; ping-pong diplomacy played an important role in the rapprochement between China and the U.S. in the early 1970s; and, hip-hop diplomacy has helped foster dialogue in the Muslim world since the early 2000s.  In today’s increasingly multi-polar world, startup diplomacy might just be the next frontier of U.S. soft power.

The potential of startup diplomacy, which aims to promote grassroots entrepreneurship and innovation worldwide, stems from three current realities.  The first is that, like jazz and hip hop, American entrepreneurship culture has broad global appeal.  Entrepreneurs such as Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg are veritable superstars in today’s world, inspiring young people from New Delhi to Dakar.   The second reality is that the world’s youth population is swelling at a time when its employment opportunities are shrinking; over half of the world’s population is under 25, and youth unemployment is climbing worldwide, reaching 12.6% in 2013, and over 25% in regions such as North Africa and the Middle East. Entrepreneurial skills would help the world’s youth to take their destiny into their own hands and drive economic and social development in their countries and beyond. The third reality that makes startup diplomacy so promising is that many of the global challenges we face in the 21st century – climate change, sustained economic growth, conflict prevention – can only be addressed through creative problem-solving and the empowerment of local communities.  This is what entrepreneurship is all about- not just making a quick profit but creating lasting positive change.

To realize the potential of startup diplomacy, the United States needs innovative partners from the private sector, including UP Global. UP Global’s Startup Weekend model was developed to produce successful startup companies in just 54 hours, but its impact is much broader.  Startup Weekend sparks innovative thinking and creative problem-solving; it gives participants a crash course in business creation and teaches them how to work in a team; and, most importantly, it opens participants’ eyes to their own potential.  In short, Startup Weekend empowers people.The beauty of Startup Weekend is that it transcends cultural and professional boundaries.  This was demonstrated during the recent Youth Forum Startup Weekend organized by the U.S. Department of State and UP Global, in connection with UNESCO’s 8th Youth Forum.The Youth Forum Startup Weekend brought together Youth Forum delegates from thirty countries and thirty aspiring entrepreneurs based in France.  The participants, many of whom had no prior experience with entrepreneurship, were asked to “pitch” innovative business solutions to social challenges, form teams around those ideas, and develop an action plan to take their idea forward.  The teams presented their final products before a jury that included representatives from UP Global, Google, the Office of the Prime Minister of France, and Women’s Worldwide Web.


The results of the Youth Forum Startup Weekend were nothing short of extraordinary. One team developed an online platform to connect young people in Africa to training and job opportunities. Another team worked on a website that would allow individuals to donate unwanted food, potentially reducing food waste.  Yet another team proposed a mobile application that would bring greater visibility and resources to local musicians in East Africa.  In the end, the judges selected a project called ‘SEED’ as the winner of the Youth Forum Startup Weekend.  Developed by an international team representing eight countries, SEED aims to reduce the amount of waste produced by the tourism industry on small island states by up-cycling discarded items and selling them back to the very hotels that produce the waste.

Not only did participants of Startup Weekend come up with innovative projects, they were transformed in the process. In a post-event survey conducted by UP Global, some participants spoke of how it demystified entrepreneurship and led them to consider starting a business.  The representative from Cote d’Ivoire commented, “I believed that entrepreneurship was reserved for one category of person.  But through this activity, I understand that I can be a true entrepreneur.” Others stressed how Startup Weekend helped them concretize their ideas, with the representative from Saint Lucia saying, “My fear of failing was crippling my attempts to implement my idea…but, within the security of the Startup Weekend, I was able to face that fear and recognize my ability to develop something concrete and viable.”  All of the participants surveyed expressed a determination to take the lessons they learned from Startup Weekend back to their home countries.

The Youth Forum Startup Weekend demonstrated the tremendous potential of startup diplomacy to empower youth populations worldwide, but it is only the beginning.  In October, the U.S. Department of State and UP Global announced an ambitious partnership to reach 1,000 cities and train 500,000 entrepreneurs by 2016.  Given the ripple effect that entrepreneurs have on their communities, it’s safe to say that the world will be a different place with half a million new entrepreneurs.

Check out the UNESCO video from the event below:

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GSB Teams: Looking to Crowd Fund? Grab Your indiegogo Resources Here!


If you competed in this year’s Global Startup Battle, we highly encourage you to keep working on your concept, whether or not you’ve made the top 15 for your Circle. If you made the Champion’s Circle, Google will be matching funds raised for the winning teams, and a stronger campaign can only help you secure more funds! We recommend teams get started now; even if you don’t end up winning the match-funding, you will have the start of an awesome campaign to help you continue on your startup journey.  If you’re ready to get started, use the GSB Campaign Creation Link to begin creating your campaign.

The following resources are available to help you as you build:

Community Leader of the Week: Ramphis Castro

Our Community Leader of the week is Ramphis Castro from San Juan, Puerto Rico!


In short, Ramphis does everything ‘UP Global’: He’s a Startup Weekend Organizer, veteran Facilitator, he brought NEXT to his region, he’s a StartupDigest Curator, and a Startup America Champion.

On top of everything he does for his community through UP, he’s also:

  • Co-Director of the local Founder Institute, a 4-month founder training program. As part of that work, they recently took the best companies in the local ecosystem to NYC as part of a startup showcase. One of these startups included a NEXT team: Kytelabs!

  • Ramphis explains,  “It was the first time ever Puerto Rico presented itself, as a community, to the NYC community – with dozens of local companies in attendance, investors, accelerators, and others.  We’ve come a long way since the first international article about the community

In October, we were lucky to have Ramphis join us alongside other Community Leaders to ring the NASDAQ closing bell. Thank you for all you do, Ramphis!

“Entrepreneurship is about freedom – freedom to pursue your passions, freedom to change the world for the better, freedom to live a life of endless opportunity. I do what I do to enable everyone around the world, starting with Puerto Rico, to have the opportunity to execute on their dreams, not just fantasize about them.”

– Ramphis

벤처 1세대 '후배 사랑'…첫 성공모델 나왔다 – Korean SW Team Quicket Acquired by NHN!

Quicket, which formed at the first Startup Weekend in Korea in 2010, was just successfully acquired by NHN.  NHN is the No. 1 portal service in Korea and dominates the market. This post was originally published here. Congrats, Quicket! 

초기 벤처기업 인큐베이터 ‘프라이머’를 만든 인터넷 창업 1세대인 송영길 부가벤처스 대표(왼쪽부터), 이택경 프라이머 대표, 권도균 이니시스 창업자, 장병규 본엔젤스벤처스 대표, 이재웅 다음커뮤니케이션 창업자. 프라이머 제공

정보기술(IT) 업계 1세대 창업자들이 후배 벤처를 발굴·육성하기 위해 만든 초기 벤처투자사 ‘프라이머’에서 첫 ‘엑시트(투자 회수)’ 기업이 탄생했다. 지난달 29일 네이버에 인수된 ‘퀵켓’이다. 국내 최대 모바일 중고장터인 ‘번개장터’를 운영하고 있는 이 기업은 수천만원대의 초기 투자와 수억원대의 후속 투자를 단계적으로 유치해 인터넷 기업에 인수됐다는 점에서 모범적인 창업 성공 사이클을 제시했다.

이재웅·이택경 다음커뮤니케이션 창업자, 검색전문회사 ‘첫눈’을 만든 장병규 본엔젤스벤처스 대표, 권도균 이니시스 창업자 등 1세대 벤처 선배들이 나서 초기 기업을 육성하는 ‘풀뿌리 벤처 육성’ 전략이 벤처 생태계에 선순환 구조를 만들었다는 평가다.

◆풀뿌리 벤처 성공모델 제시

퀵켓이 만든 번개장터는 스마트폰을 이용해 안전하게 중고 거래를 할 수 있는 애플리케이션(앱)이다. 이 앱을 통한 월 거래액은 100억원에 달하며 하루에 등록되는 중고 물품 건수는 3만건을 넘어섰다. 앱 다운로드 횟수는 250만회, 회원 수는 150만명가량이다.

네이버에 약 100억원의 기업가치를 인정받고 인수된 벤처기업이지만 장원귀 대표가 세종대 동기·후배인 장영석 이사, 김현석 이사와 함께 창업할 당시 초기 설립자본금은 3000만원에 불과했다. 퀵켓 팀은 컴퓨터 비전 분야 아이템과 중고장터 아이템을 함께 고민하다가 중고장터 개발 쪽에 비중을 두고 창업을 진행해 2010년 10월 첫 서비스를 론칭했다.

퀵켓은 본격적으로 창업하기 전 직접 창업 아이템을 구현해볼 수 있는 단기 프로그램인 ‘스타트업위크엔드’와 멘토링을 바탕으로 사업 계획을 구체화할 수 있는 ‘프라이머 엔턴십’ 프로그램에도 참여했다. 이후 프라이머에서 5000만원 이하의 증자를 받고 멘토링·육성 그룹인 ‘프라이머 클럽’의 일원이 됐다. 이후 SOQRI, 본엔젤스벤처스에서 3억원 안팎의 후속 투자를 유치했다.

올해 3월부터는 해외 진출 가능성까지 인정받아 네이버로부터 인수 의사를 타진받았다. 결국 성공적으로 인수합병(M&A) 협상을 마무리해 지난달 29일 네이버에 지분 51%를 매각했다. 이번 M&A로 프라이머는 초기 투자금액 대비 30배 이상에 달하는 투자가치를 인정받았다.

◆수천만원 투자하는 초기 인큐베이터

벤처 팀을 발굴해 육성하고 수천만원대의 초기 투자를 집행하는 프라이머는 본엔젤스벤처스·케이큐브벤처스 등 초기기업 벤처캐피털(VC)보다 한 단계 앞선 투자사다. 2010년 1월 5명의 1세대 벤처기업인이 합심해 설립했다.

국내 시장에서 인큐베이팅 형식 초기 투자사는 일반 VC와 달리 적은 금액을 쪼개서 다수의 기업에 투자해야 하고, 팀 구성과 사업 아이템 등을 일일이 조언해야 하기 때문에 관리·운영이 쉽지 않다. 이택경 프라이머 공동대표는 “장 대표, 권 대표 등과 국내 벤처 ‘생태계’ 구축에 대해 논의하던 중 아이디어가 구체화됐다”며 “직접 인터넷기업을 창업해 본 선배로서 창업 과정의 다양한 ‘경험’을 어떻게 전할 수 있을까 고민하다가 나온 결과”라고 설명했다.

최근에는 취업 포털 사이트 인크루트를 만든 이광석 창업자 등 3명의 파트너가 추가로 합류했다. 이택경 대표는 “이번 성공사례를 계기로 국내에서도 인큐베이팅 전문회사가 늘어나면 좋겠다”면서도 “벤처기업 육성은 수보다 질이 중요하다”고 강조했다. 그는“벤처기업 육성에 정답은 없지만 낭떠러지가 어느 곳인지 조언해주는 선배 창업자가 필요하다”고 말했다.

김보영 기자