A Meeting of 500+ Tech Minds — CONNECTpreneur Fall Forum

29 Sep A Meeting of 500+ Tech Minds — CONNECTpreneur Fall Forum

Yesterday I attended my 5th Big Idea CONNECTpreneur event, hosted by Tech 2000 and Lore Systems, Inc.

CONNECTpreneur events were created to facilitate an opportunity for entrepreneurs and investors to meet, share ideas and learn from mutual experiences. Trust me, this opportunity is not lost on any of the attendees. Whether it’s the steady stream of caffeine or the unwavering ambition of the showcasing entrepreneurs, the energy in the room is palpable and contagious.

Each event starts with a fireside chat featuring a successful entrepreneur. This morning may have been my favorite speaker to date — Seth Goldman, Founder and TeaEO (haha) of Honest Tea.


(Photo Credit: Tien Wong)

I am consistently surprised by the approachability of CEOs like Seth. As an extremely accomplished entrepreneur, innovator and businessman, he maintained a casual and accessible meaner. During the conversation, Seth shared a bit of his background and experience getting stated with Honest Tea (invaluable for a room full of eager startups). Following his stories about the stresses of owning a bottling plant in Pittsburgh and the launch of Beyond Meat, Seth shared what is possibly the most important lesson for professionals to remember. He reminded the audience to have fun and to find ways to stay passionate about what you do — otherwise it will all just get to be too hard.

Thank you so much, Seth for the engaging discussion and the refreshing drinks this morning!


(Photo Credit: Jenn Sherman)

Following the fireside chat is the main event – the Company Showcase. During this segment, executives from companies looking to raise funding get the opportunity to share their hopes and dreams with a captive audience of potential investors.  In case you missed it – here’s a round up of the presenting companies:

BeneVir — A medical technology that aims to overcome prohibitive barriers in oncolytic immunotherapy. Presented by Founder & CEO Matt Mulvey, BeneVir is currently perusing a $12M round of funding

bThere — An online platform that enables end-to-end delivery of 360 degree video. bThere was presented by its founder & CEO, Amy Nichols, who is raising $500k to bring on more developers, file patents and bring the product to market

Fast Plastic Parts — This plastics manufacturing company was presented by CEO Corbin Cowan and one of the company’s key investors who spoke to its potential. The company is looking for funding to attract new customers with strategic sales and marketing strategies.

NEXAWARE — Jeff Segal, CEO, presented E-Scale, NEXAWARE’s flagship product that was designed to help people with mobility impairments and cannot weigh themselves

RoboMQ —The impressive IoT and SaaS integration platform has already attracted customers including Top Golf, Booz Allen, and Spencer Gifts. Presented by Bramh Gupta, Founder & CEO, RoboMQ is seeking 2M to be spend on analyst relations, marketing and sales

Speak Agent— This education company is dedicated to closing the academic achievement gap for ESL students. Vijay lakshman, COO, and Ben Grimley, CEO, have tremendous experience in education and technology and are seeking $2.5M for sales, marketing and on-boarding new employees

Virtue Labs — An omni-channel brand platform that manufactures, develops and markets technology based beauty products, presented by CEO Melisse Shaban.

XAPP Media — This company is committed to gathering the worlds content and making it accessible by voice. Presented by Pat Higbie, CEO & co-founder, XAPP is seeking $700k to further develop the company

As always, our team had a great time yesterday at the fall CONNECTpreneur Forum! Thanks to Tien Wong for hosting such a great event.

Stay tuned for CONNECTpreneur Part 2 with details on the rest of the event, and check out the Facebook Live videos from yesterdays event here.




Sally McHugh
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