MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge Presents "Accelerating Startup Growth: Seed Funding, Incubation and Mentorship Models"

Session to Feature Startup Experts and Investors Including Dave McClure, Simeon Simeonov, Hemant Taneja and David Cohen

Boston, Massachusetts, UNITED STATES

CAMBRIDGE, MA--(Marketwire - March 1, 2010) -  On March 10, the MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge will present a roundtable on pushing the boundaries of established financing models for startups. The roundtable will feature experienced entrepreneurs and investors Dave McClure, investor, Founders Fund and Facebook's fbFund; Simeon Simeonov, founder and CEO, FastIgnite; Hemant Taneja, managing director, General Catalyst; and David Cohen, founder and CEO, TechStars. The event will be sponsored by the law firm of Foley & Lardner LLP.

The high-tech industry has changed significantly over the past few years. The cost of innovation and execution has become significantly lower, as startups are able to build products faster and cheaper. Through social Web and inbound marketing techniques, companies can efficiently launch and acquire early customers yet, at the same time, barriers to entry have come down and competition amongst startups has substantially increased. As a result, these changes and the recession have forced the evolution of the investment industry, which has been most visible at the seed investment stages. A new breed of super angels, nimble VCs, first round specialists and incubators are leading the charge and many claim to bring a lot more than just cash to the table. Come, ask questions and judge for yourself.

The event will be highlighted by inside-look presentations by entrepreneurs who have worked with this new brand of investors and have been part of Betaworks, Dog Patch Labs, DreamIt, fbFund, TechStars and Y Combinator.

"We are proud to sponsor this innovative event designed to offer early stage startups and entrepreneurs an inside look at the changing investment landscape," said Gabor Garai, partner and chair of the Foley Private Equity and Venture Capital Practice. "It provides a unique in-depth view of the state of the art in financing and mentoring startups, a key driver of our entrepreneurial New England economy."

David Cohen is the founder and CEO of TechStars. Previously, Cohen was a founder of several software and Web technology companies including Pinpoint Technologies and Cohen is an active startup advocate, advisor, board member, and technology advisor who comments often on these topics on his blog.

Dave McClure oversees the Founders Fund seed-stage investment program, including the FF Angel seed fund and fbFund REV incubator. Before joining Founders Fund, McClure spent twenty years as a technology entrepreneur, investor and executive. McClure also founded Aslan Computing and was an early investor and on the management team at job search engine Simply Hired. McClure also served as director of marketing for PayPal, where he launched the PayPal Developer Network.

Simeon Simeonov is the founder and CEO of FastIgnite, where he helps entrepreneurs shape promising ideas, raise capital, build teams and execute across all stages of the startup lifecycle. Simeonov is also co-founder of Better Advertising and Thing Labs. Prior to starting FastIgnite, Simeonov was technology partner at Polaris Venture Partners, where he made investments in the online, enterprise and mobile sectors and helped start four companies that Polaris invested in. He serves on the board of directors of the Massachusetts Innovation & Technology Exchange, and on the advisory boards of Backupify, DubMeNow and the Nantucket Conference.

Hemant Taneja is managing director of General Catalyst Partners, where he invests in technology-intensive software, hardware and services in clean energy and Internet communications. Taneja is also co-founder and chairman of Sunborne Energy, as well as being co-founder and chairman of the New England Clean Energy Council, and previously was co-founder, chairman and CEO of Isovia. Taneja also served on the board of SiteAdvisor.

When: Wednesday, March 10, 2010
  5:30pm: Networking mixer & sandwiches
  6:15-8:00pm: Program
  8:00-9:00pm: Networking reception

Where: MIT Stata Center (Building 32), Kirsch Auditorium, 32 Vassar St., Cambridge, MA

Registration and information:

Pricing: Forum members: $25, Non-members: $40. Students from all universities are free with college ID. Pre-registration is encouraged.

Contact Information:

Trish Fleming
MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge