STARTUP WEEKEND PROVIDENCE begins at 6:30 p.m. tonight at Betaspring headquarters. The event, part of a global movement designed to teach aspiring entrepreneurs the basics of founding a startup, promises that registrants are "guaranteed to leave the event better prepared to navigate the chaotic but fun world of startups."
PROVIDENCE – Startup Weekend Providence, a 54-hour event that brings students and professionals together in a race to launch a startup in just one weekend, begins Friday at Betaspring.
Startup Weekend is a global nonprofit organization designed to teach aspiring entrepreneurs the basics of founding a startup and launching successful ventures. In 2011, more than 400 Startup Weekend events were held in 100 countries around the world, according to the organization’s website.
Like all Startup Weekends, the Providence event will begin with an open invitation for registered attendants to pitch a startup idea and receive feedback from their peers. The best ideas, determined by popular vote, form teams. Each team then has 54 hours to build a business model, code, design and develop a market validation plan around its startup idea.
Coaches will assist the teams through the process and provide professional expertise. This year’s coaches include Jeff Ledoux, co-founder of food service startup Birefire and mobile channel consultant at Johnson & Wales University; Gyuri Grell, principal mobile software engineer at Constant Contact; and David Dadekian, writer and editor of Eat Drink RI.
The weekend will culminate with presentations in front of local entrepreneurial leaders with another opportunity for critical feedback. Each fledgling startup will be judged on the basis of customer validation, business model and execution, which could include a website, mobile app, powerpoint presentation, video or live product demo, depending on the startup.
Judging the startup teams will be Allan Tear, co-founder and managing partner of Betaspring; Mike Rowan, vice president and research and development for SendGrid; and Mark Truman, solutions architect at GTECH Corp.
“Whether entrepreneurs found companies, find a cofounder, meet someone new, or learn a skill far outside their usual 9-to-5, everyone is guaranteed to leave the event better prepared to navigate the chaotic but fun world of startups,” according to a Startup Weekend Providence release.
GTECH, Amica Mutual Insurance and the Founders League are among the main sponsors for this year’s event.
Startup Weekend Providence beings at 6:30 p.m. on Oct. 18 at Betaspring headquarters at 95 Chestnut St. Registration costs $50 for students and $99 for non-students.