The Biggest Deal In Shark Tank History Comes Just In Time For Halloween


Last Friday Shark Tank returned with one of the creepiest pitches ever. Former Clear Channel Communications executive Melissa Carbone walked in with a snarling zombie in tow, and as the pitch continued a scarecrow, clown, a chainsaw murder came out of the display to terrorize the sharks.

“Don’t eyeball me. I will kick your tush back to Texas,” Mark Cuban informed the chainsaw-wielding actor.

The founder of the Ten Thirty One Productions, the company behind the popular LA Haunted Hayride was looking for $2 million dollars to expand her business to New York. Despite earning $1.8 million in 17 days, many of the sharks disagreed with Carbone’s $20 million valuation.

“I’m an expert in high-octane scare,” Daymond John said. “Put on a piece of jewelry and walk around where I grew up. That’s a high-octane scare.”

He went on to offer $2 million for a 40% stake in the company. Carbone paused before countering: $2 million for 20%.

It took Cuban–whose face showed nothing but disgust at the beginning of the pitch–about 2 seconds to jump in.

“I’ll take that,” he said, slamming his notebook closed.

And, just like that, the biggest deal in Shark Tank history is done. Cuban, of course, is well known for his wide portfolio and often unusual investments. As the segment ended, he told the other sharks he believes the future of entertainment is in experiences.

However, a lot of sharks argued that Carbone’s company will never see the kind of profit she projected. We all know that not everything goes right when we launch new endeavors, and Ten Thirty One’s plans are ambitious. In 2014 they plan to launch a series of horror campouts along the West Coast, as well as a New York Haunted Hayride in October. They have some–sorry–scary goals. Still $2 million from Mark Cuban can’t hurt.

Find out more about Ten Thirty One Productions at their website.


Mark Cuban Never Sleeps: Backs Harvard Startup HourlyNerd

HourlyNerd, Boston startup, Harvard Startup, Mark Cuban

(HourlyNerd team photo: HourlyNerd)

Just yesterday we reported on Mark Cuban’s two most recent investments. Now we have a third. Back in July we reported that Mark Cuban had backed Harvard startup Tivli, a company that brings live TV over the internet to college students. The company allows college students to view their live TV content over any connected device no matter where they are on campus.

Well Cuban is back at Harvard investing in another high growth potential startup, again in a totally different industry.

HourlyNerd, the Harvard startup, is the latest startup trying to connect MBA’s to work. The company says they have 900 MBA’s who are willing and ready to work for small businesses on an as needed basis. The service is ideal for “small businesses that want to access premier quality professionals at reasonable rates and on an ‘as needed’ basis,” HourlyNerd told the Boston Business Journal.

There are a lot of MBA graduates and MBA students that upon completion (or nearly completing their MBA) struggle trying to find the ideal long term placement for themselves. There have been a handful of startups that are trying to find ways to connect these MBA’s to work, be it extremely short term or on a project by project basis like DC based MBA Project Search which we profiled back in November.

In regards to HourlyNerd, Cuban said in a statement that the company “fills a need every entrepreneurial company faces,” and said he expects to use the service “heavily.” Cuban is investing rapidly in several startups that run across a variety of industries, often times outside of his direct scope.

Cuban led HourlyNerd’s $750,000 round with a reported investment of $450,000.  The company was founded in a Harvard University course by Rob Biederman, Peter Maglathlin, Joe Miller, and Patrick Petitti.

The Business Journal notes that Accanto Partners and Connect Ventures also participated in the round.

See how our co-founder Nick Tippmann directly  helped Atlanta startup Badgy get an investment from Mark Cuban.


Mark Cuban Shows Variety In Portfolio With Latest Startup Investments

Mark Cuban, Fiscal Note, Ranku, Funding, startup

Some may think that Mark Cuban’s investment strategy is all over the place, but teh truth of the matter is it goes hand in hand with his varied background. Cuban’s career crosses a variety of industries, all of which were self taught.

Cuban began his career as a self taught computer salesman who didn’t  even own a computer. From here his next big accolade is selling to Yahoo, starting HDTv (now axs). Now he’s also a NBA franchise owner, shark on ABC’s Shark Tank, dancer on Dancing With The Stars, startup investor, philanthropist, and more. With all of that in mind Cuban is still just one of the guys, just ask anyone that knows him or frequents places he likes to hang out.

Cuban’s investment portfolio encompasses lots of industries. He’s invested in things that touch his TV business like Tivli and One Condition. He’s also invested in app selling company Apptopia, multilingual analytics firm Linquasys. and local rewards startup Badgy. That doesn’t even scratch the surface of Cuban’s portfolio; you can find more of his investments here.

Cuban’s two most recent statup investments are equally diverse.

After meeting Kim Taylor at the Kaplan accelerator program for edtech startups, Cuban led a $500,000 round for Ranku. Taylor also happened to be one of the featured entrepreneurs on Bravo’s reality show about startups called Startups: Silicon Valley.

Ranku ranks colleges by the success its graduates have with finding jobs rather than how they rank on the US News & World Report list. Obviously this is a much more relevant way to rank schools for students headed into college.

On Wednesday evening TechCrunch’s Anthony Ha reported that Cuban has also backed legislation tracking and prediction startup FiscalNote.  The $1.2 million dollar round will help the startup continue working on new technologies to support their original model.

FiscalNote provides a service to businesses that keeps them up to date with legislation across all 50 states that may affect their business. Co-Founder and CEO Tim Hwang told Ha that many businesses are affected by these changes in legislation and for a business to keep up with them they would need a large staff hitting refresh on all 50 states websites continuously. Beyond that they would need to decode that legislation and see how it really affected their business. FiscalNote’s algorithm does all of that for them.

For more on Mark Cuban and his  startup investments check this out.


Mark Cuban, NEA And More Back Boston Startup Tivli

Mark Cuban, Tivli, Startup, Boston Startup

Mark Cuban (photo: JD Lasica flickr)

Tivli is a startup that’s bringing college students live TV over the internet. The company streams live TV, including broadcast channels, to students on their web connected devices, no matter where they are on campus.

The Boston Business Journal reports that Tivli was founded by 2009 Harvard engineering graduates Tuan Ho and Nicholas Krasney. They also beta tested the product on Harvard’s campus in 2011.  The Tivli service has since expanded to Yale, Texas A&M, The University of Washington, and Wesleyan University.

“Tivli is a fast-growing entertainment service for college campuses that streams live, time-shifted and on-demand TV content to students on their terms — when they want, where they want, and on the devices they want,” said Christopher Thorpe, the company’s CEO in a news release on their website. “Tivli also provides an innovative service to the universities with cost-effective, secure video distribution over their existing data networks.  Moreover, students tell us that Tivli makes their on-campus living experience even better.  We’re proud to have earned the support of our world-class investors and look forward to working with them as we build a great company.”

On Wednesday the company reported that they had closed a Series A round led by New Enterprise Associates (NEA), with participation from Felicis Ventures, Rho Ventures, HBO, Mark Cuban’s Radical Investments, WME, and CBC New Media Group.

Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks, ABC Shark Tank shark, and angel investor routinely invests in startups in a wide variety of technologies. Tivli was especially appealing to him because it’s in the video space ,which he is very familiar with. Cuban is also the founder of HDNet which is now AXS TV. He also made his first billion selling to Yahoo.

“I’m excited to be part of Tivli and think they are the future of entertainment on college campuses,”  Cuban said in a statement.“Tivli is a great complement for AXS TV and my other entertainment investments.”

You can find out more about Tivli here.


Here’s a way not to get an investment from Mark Cuban.


Mark Cuban Crowdsources Next Maverick’s Uniform

Mark Cuban, Dallas Mavericks, Crowd Sourcing,startups,Shark TankEver since our co-founder and CEO Nick Tippmann got Mark Cuban to come to his Shark Tank Season 3 Premiere party in Indianapolis, we’ve covered Cuban and his investments in startups. Cuban’s personal blog, blogmaverick, describes the billionaire investor, Shark Tank Shark and owner of the Dallas Mavericks, to a “T’. Not because he’s the owner of the NBA team with the same name, but because he’s a maverick himself.

Cuban isn’t one to do things the “normal” way. After a dismal season this year, Cuban has decided that maybe the Mavs need a change in uniform. He wants to implement the change in the 2015-2016 season.

On his blog, Cuban announces to the world and the Maverick’s fan base that this change is coming. More importantly though, Cuban isn’t hiring some big shot consultant or spending millions of dollars to come up with 10 mediocre designs. He’s crowdsourcing. He wants fans of his beloved Maverick’s to design the teams next uniform.

sneakersNow he wants the uniforms to fit the NBA uniform format. He also wants to keep the logo intact and try not to stray far away from the current color scheme. Of course he’s looking for creativity stemming from the great people that love his team.

He’s quick to point out that any design submitted immediately becomes the property of the Dallas Mavericks and if you don’t want to adhere to that you need not submit.

“Who will own your design ? The minute you post it, the Mavs will.  If you think its horrible that the Mavs own your design. Do not post. If you think its cool that the Mavs could possibly use your design and you will have eternal bragging rights , then post away.” Cuban writes.

If Cuban feels up to it he may throw in some tickets for the designer. There’s no promise of anything except bragging rights, and he may not select any fan design at all. “That is life in the big city. Move on.” Cuban adds.

The contest is open until the end of May, click on over to Blogmaverick for more.

Check out more of our Mark Cuban coverage here at


Shark Tank’s Daymond John Invests Time & Money In Chicago Startup Resultly

Resutly,Chicago startup,Daymond John,Shark TankIt’s gotta be exciting for Resultly founder Ilya Beyrak who just two months ago penned a blog post on the companies blog about what “I’m Out” means on the hit reality series Shark Tank. Now, Beyrak and the team at Resultly are celebrating bringing Fubu Founder and Shark Tank Shark, Daymond John on board as an investor.

More importantly though, John is excited about the product and part of his investment is a partnership where he will help the team grow their product that allows people to search for something and then get updated on it.

“Kim Kardashian sent a tweet last year stating how she keeps checking eBay for a pair of shoes everyday that’s sold out,” Beyrak said, . “If even Kim can’t find a pair of shoes and keeps repeatedly checking online, imagine how many others suffer the same fate,”

Resultly provides users with a mobile app to stay on top of all their interests. Tapping into the web’s largest ecommerce, travel, news, and social sites lets Resultly bring users items exactly matching their interest the second they hit the web. Resultly aims to eliminate the need for users to continue checking the Internet for updates on the things they care most about.

“When I first tried Resultly, I was blown away by the product in the first couple seconds of playing with it. It easily solves one of the biggest problems with search in a way that all of the big competitors aren’t addressing,” said John. “It was hard not to get excited about the product and additional value that I could bring.” Resultly realized there was a real world problem of users repeating search behavior online to get the freshest content: the need for constantly checking if something has been added or updated online. Thru its service, once a specific interest is added to a users’ account, Resultly stays on the lookout for things matching that interest automatically. Users then receive detailed alerts to their mobile device with the key information around those items. Products receive key information like images, price, color, and condition, while Job alerts show salary, location, and position.

John invested in Resultly throgh his “shark branding” investment arm. Sharkbranding scours the country to find interesting startups and companies that would compliment John’s current portfolio of companies or that would make great partners. We met SharkBranding’s, Jared Nixon, at the GigTank Investor Day in Chattanooga Tennessee last August.

Shark Tank’s Mark Cuban leads $1 million dollar round for Florida startup.


In the Mouth of a Shark: Learn From ‘Shark Tank’

Startup Tips,Guest Post,Shark TankHave you seen “Shark Tank” yet? For entrepreneurs, it’s one of the best reality TV shows. Cable and satellite packages start at around $30 per month, according to “Shark Tank” has five investors that are selected to sit on a stage that listen to entrepreneurs pitch their products and business ideas. After their pitch, the sharks decide whether or not they will be given money to fund their business ideas.

In the process, the entrepreneurs are asked a barrage of questions, sometimes humiliated, often laughed at, occasionally insulted and generally traumatized. Some of the sharks include Mark Cuban, real estate mogul Barbara Corcoran, Kevin O’Leary, who created and sold “The Learning Company” to Mattel for $3.2 billion, FUBU clothing founder Daymond John and comedian Jeff Foxworthy. Despite the hostile atmosphere created by the sharks, participants could walk away from the experience with a big, fat check if one or more of the Sharks believe their business idea is a good one. Lessons can be learned from “Shark Tank” for entrepreneurs:

Find Your Niche

When an entrepreneur makes their pitch, reactions from the sharks can be pretty telling. If it’s an Internet-related idea and Mark Cuban doesn’t like it, no deal. If a clothing idea is rejected by Mr. FUBU, chances are the designer will be sent back to the drawing board. If an idea geared toward an infomercial is rejected by the infomercial expert, it’s back to square one. You can’t be all things to all people, but you should know your target audience and connect with them.

Use Your Passion

Coming from a place of truly enjoying what you do is key, and the sharks pick up on it. One investor came in with just an idea — a medicine dropper in the shape of an elephant for kids — and won investment dollars. AVA the Elephant is now sold in 10,000 stores in 10 countries. Founder Tiffany Krumins used her passion for helping kids to create a successful business.

Fill a Need

Find a need and create a great product to fill that need. ReaderRest Magnetic Glasses Holders from season three is one of the show’s most successful products. It calls itself a “simple solution for eyewear management problems” and allows the user to keep their glasses safely and securely within reach using magnets that automatically attach and self-center. Overall, sales went quickly from $65,000 to $5.5 million after the show.

Do it Better

You don’t have to reinvent the wheel to be successful; you just have to make a better wheel. BBQ sauce is nothing new, but sales of season one’s Pork Barrel BBQ sauces and rubs went from $5,000 to $3.5 million after their investment. Jamba Juice bought season three’s Talbott Teas in 2012. Both products took an ordinary item to the next level, doing it better than their competitors.

Sell the Dream, not Numbers

Some entrepreneurs start working their pitch with statements like, “I sold X amount of my product last year.” These people tend to get the worst deals from the sharks, or none at all. Sometimes the sharks don’t seem to care about numbers like $1 million in past sales, i.e., an excellent company that got no deal. Past numbers do not sell — the dream does.

Now’s Your Chance To Get On ABC’s Shark Tank Season 5

Shark Tank,Shark Tank auditions,startup,startups,startup newsMost entrepreneurs I know either watch Shark Tank on a regular basis or have at least checked out the show. If you’re like most entrepreneurs I know than you’ve watched Shark Tank and cringed at some of the “startups” that have made it onto the show.

You may even be one of those Shark Tank fans that yells at the TV like you’re watching the Duke Blue Devils lose to Louisville, screaming when you see an entrepreneur balk at what could be a once in a lifetime opportunity.  After all the Shark Tank sharks have invested $20 million dollars in over 100 deals so far in the first four seasons.

Well fret no more because your chance to get your business in the Shark Tank is now.

Beginning in two weeks, Shark Tank is casting across the country for season 5. With the success of season 4 there was no doubt a season 5 would be on the way.  Shark Tank’s open casting call is coming to five cities starting with Atlanta but there are only 500 spots at each stop.

Now you won’t be pitching in front of any of the actual sharks but if you can get past the first few screenings you may be in store for your big break.

The open casting call is headed to Atlanta, Dallas, Chicago, Philly and Los Angeles, here are the details.

Atlanta, Georgia – April 14th

660 Peachtree St. NE
Atlanta, GA 30308
11:00 AM to 1:00 PM – Numbered Wristbands Distributed
12:00 PM – Shark Tank Interviews Begin

Dallas, Texas April 20th

3030 Olive St.
Dallas, TX 75201
9:00 AM to 11:00 AM – Numbered Wristbands Distributed
10:00 AM – Shark Tank Interviews Begin

CHICAGO, Illinois – May 9th


1200 S. Lake Shore Dr.
Chicago, IL 60605
12:00 PM to 2:00 PM – Numbered Wristbands Distributed
1:00 PM – Shark Tank Interviews Begin

PHILADELPHIA. Pennsylvania – May 11th

2025 Washington Ave.
Philadelphia, PA 19146
9:00 AM to 11:00 AM – Numbered Wristbands Distributed
10:00 AM – Shark Tank Interviews Begin

LOS ANGELES, California May 24th

4222 Vineland Ave.
North Hollywood, CA 91602
10:00 AM to 12:00 PM – Numbered Wristbands

Before you go you should probably know these two things, sometimes deals we see get done on TV get thrown back, and the Shark Tank producers can take 5% equity or a 2% royalty no matter what, once you get on the show.

Here’s A Way Not To Get An Investment From Mark Cuban

Mark Cuban (c) hanging out with nibletz co-founder Nick Tippmann (r)

You may have heard through the grapevine that Mark Cuban is an aggressive investor in early stage startups. Take the Shark Tank out of the equation and Cuban is still eager to invest in good technology.

Many people also know that Mark Cuban is one of the nicest and most approachable billionaires in the world. You can pretty easily find his email address online and if  you’ve got a good question or a good pitch he’ll actually respond to you.  Heck he’ll even let you talk smack about basketball.

But earlier today one startup founder took the absolute wrong approach to win over Cuban’s ears and investment.  It seems that this founder is in the process of closing a round. He apparently has a commitment from Peter Thiel and wanted Cuban to get in as well.

So what does he do? He emails Mark Cuban with the subject line: “Peter Thiel invested so you’re lucky I’m emailing you”.

Cuban took to Twitter for his response:

Mark Cuban, Startup Tips, investment, Shark Tank

Cuban than tweeted this message to follow up:


Mississippi Startup Muddy Water: Next Stop Shark Tank

Muddy Water Camo, Mississippi startup,Shark Tank

Steve Maloney co-founder of Muddy Water Camo (photo:

Long time readers of know that we’re big fans of Shark Tank on ABC. Naturally as entrepreneurs, Shark Tank is a must watch show (you can see our Shark Tank coverage here). We’ve even reported on when an entrepreneur on Shark Tank has their deal reneged on after the show airs.

The show puts entrepreneurs from across the country up against some of the most brilliant investor minds there are. Mark Cuban, Damon John, Kevin O’Leary, Barbara Corcoran, Lori Greiner, and Robert Herjavec. All of them are multi-millionaires, and Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks is actually a billionaire.

In the four seasons the show has been on the air we’ve seen a wide variety of startups pitched in the Shark Tank. Ideas ranging from homemade peanut butter to VIP club service have all been pitched in the tank.

Friday night, February 22, Madison Mississippi startup “Muddy Water Camo” will get their chance to pitch the sharks.  The company’s founders Steve Maloney and Stephen Kirkpatrick were selected out of over 30,000 entries to pitch.  The show is currently averaging 6.8 million viewers per episode.

The company designs and manufacturers camo products ranging from caps, hats, masks, waders, and gear bags, in what called “the most realistic camo pattern ever created”

Maloney told that they created the line because most camo is designed for deer hunters, not duck hunters.

“I realized that every available camouflage pattern seem designed for hunting deer in the woods,” Maloney says. “None of those patterns looked like the marshes and flooded fields where I was hunting ducks. And it seemed to me that if you’re hunting a bird with webbed feet, your camo really ought to feature water.”

Where the innovation really comes in is how Maloney and Kirkpatrick have created and designed their camo. Their designs are based on photographs and not computer drawings. This allows their camo to be manufactured for any kind of terrain for any kind of game.

“We can make realistic camo for the mountains, the prairies, the forests – any kind of terrain, for any kind of game.” Kirkpatrick said.

Although the founders already know the outcome of their appearance they are sworn by secrecy not to reveal it until after their episode airs.

We’re curious to see how they do, as hunting and camo don’t seem to be in any particular sharks wheelhouse. Lori Greiner, who rotates her chair with Barbara Corcoran, has had lots of success marketing products on QVC, so if Greiner one of the sharks for Muddy Waters’ episode, they may be in luck. Otherwise it’s going to be a hard fight.

Find out more and see how realistic their designs really are at


Interview With Mark Cuban Backed LA Startup: Mention Mobile

Mention Mobile, Mark Cuban, Los Angeles startup,California startup,startup,startups,startup interviewShark Tank season 4 kicked off two weeks ago with Indiana University, Kelley School Of Business graduate Derek Pacque’ turning down a $200,000 investment offer from Dallas Maverick’s owner and billionaire entrepreneur Mark Cuban. Pacque’ turned down the investment because of the equity stake Cuban wanted in exchange.

That wasn’t the case with Mention Mobile founder Ryan Ozonian. Ozonian took a one in a million shot and sent Cuban an email with a two year old blog post. According to Ozonian in just 8 minutes Cuban replied. That single email exchange led to Cuban investing $250,000 back this time last year. Cuban followed that investment up with another undisclosed investment in April of this year.

Mention Mobile is a social gaming company that already has a handful of titles under the belt utilizing the popular Facebook platform. Some of their titles include: Trivia Friends, Doodley, and Zombie Bash: Christmas Attack. Their about to launch a new game, partnering with Chillingo as the publisher, called Word Derby. They expect to get that game out to users later this fall. It will be the first asynchronous word game for Chillingo.

We got a chance to talk with Ozonian about what he and MentionMobile are doing in the interview below:

Read More…

Indiana Startup: CoatChex Turns Down $200,000 From Fellow IU Alum Mark Cuban To Kick Off Season 4 Of Shark Tank

Derek Pacque co-founder and CEO of CoatChex (photo:

Indiana University Kelley School Of Business graduate Derek Pacque’ took his startup CoatChex in front of fellow Indiana University alum and ABC Shark Tank Shark (and Dallas Maverick’s Owner) Mark Cuban on the season premiere of Shark Tank Friday evening.

Pacque’ has a great concept. CoatChex is a system that uses pictures to match customers up with coat checked items. His current technology is boxed up in a device that’s about the size of a Verbatim credit card reader. Now, instead of using an old fashioned ticket redemption system for coat check, it’s done with technology where pictures of someone’s face are tied to their items. It’s safer, greener and easier to use.

Pacque’ explained that CoatChex isn’t just about coat checks though, it’s about any “bailment” system. Bailment is when you charge someone else with taking care of your stuff, like coat checks, valet parking,dry cleaning, baggage holding services and other similar services. Pacque holds a patent on using technology for these bailment businesses.

The 2012 graduate hasn’t sold anything yet, which was of course a complete turn off to Kevin “Mr. Wonderful” O’Leary. In the beginning of the segment, Cuban didn’t seem very interested in the fact Pacque’ hadn’t sold anything yet. Cuban called Pacque’s idea “horrible” over five times.

It looked like things were going to turn around though after Pacque explained that CoatChex wasn’t just about coats. Pacque went into the Shark Tank looking for $200,000 for 10% equity in his company, valuing it at $2 million dollars. O’Leary and FUBU founder Daymond John were the quickest out. Barbara Corcoran didn’t get the concept at all and bailed.

Robert Herjavic and Cuban stayed in the longest but both were concerned about the value. Herjavic asked Pacque for a new offer and wasn’t pleased when the entrepreneur changed his valuation to $1.5 million dollars. Herjavic bailed.

Cuban was still in and made Pacque an offer for $200,000 for 33% of the business. That’s where some may think Pacque’ went wrong. Pacque made a call to his professor and business partner who told him to tell Cuban no. Pacque’ told Cuban no.  PacQue’ countered with 20% for $200,000. Cuban quickly said no.

Before he walked away though he kept telling Cuban that he wanted more experience before he pitched again.

While there’s a lot of drama in Shark Tank after all it’s a Mark Burnett reality tv show, however based on Cuban’s history with companies that he likes and the entrepreneur’s he likes I wouldn’t be surprised if Cuban turns around and invested CoatChex down the road.


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St.Louis Preparing For Super Entrepreneur & Startup Event Venture Draft 8/10-8/11

Brandon Williams, through his Brandon Williams Economic Development Corporation, is planning an amazing event for St. Louis called Venture Draft. We love St. Louis, their thriving tech and startup community is starting to catch on like wildfire and in fact they’ve moved from the 49th city in the US to start a new business to 6th in just one year. That’s amazing.

What else is amazing? How about the line up of speakers, investors, and entrepreneurs that Williams has assembled for the event going on at St. Louis’ Anheuser-Busch Auditorium next week on the 10th and 11th.

Williams, who is an accomplished professional athlete, having played on a variety of NFL football teams including the St. Louis Rams, has tackled (you see what I did there), the task of helping to spread and enrich the world of startups and entrepreneurship in St. Louis. Williams has assembled Venture Draft to be the crossroads between professional athletes and celebrities and the tech and venture community.  All the while, making sure an event of this size and nature happened right in his hometown.

“The venture community is always trying to keep up with new technologies while professional athletes are looking for ways to leverage their playing days for more efficient and effective post-sports careers,” says Brandon Williams, co founder of BWEDC and former wide-receiver for the St. Louis Rams. “We understand the needs of both sectors and developed a platform to address them.”

Our good friend Gable Lozano is taking a quick break during a coast to coast fundraising trip to speak at Venture Draft. Also, FUBU founder and ABC Shark Tank investor Daymond John will be there. Successful startup founders like Henry Wong a partner at; Maurice Lopes, CEO & CoFounder at EarlyShares, and Seth Burgett CEO at Yurbuds are just some of the great speakers slated for next weekends event.

Judy Sindecuse, CEO of locally based Capital Innovators, and even William Crowder from Philly based DreamIt Ventures will represent some of the best accelerators/incubators in the country (and everywhere else) during the event.

For more information or to sign up go here to this link

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St. Louis Startup Event Attracts Sports Stars And Sharks


Former NFL football player for the San Francisco 49ers, St.Louis Rams and the apittsburgh Steelers, Brandon Williams is a native of St. Louis and passionate about the entrepreneurship and startup movement brewing in the city.

Williams alongside his business partner, Lance McCarthy, have organized a two day startup and entrepreneurship showcase, exhibition and pitch event called the Venture Draft Conference. The conference will be held at St. Louis University August 10th and 11th.

The tickets are $300, however in the world of startup and tech events thats a slim price t pay for the exposure to the resources that both Williams and McCarthy have assembled.

Williams has invited some of his professional sports colleague who are also interested in entrepreneurship as well as some local angels and venture capitalists.

One of the main attractions though will be the keynote provided by Daymond John the founder of FUBU and a shark investor on ABC’s Shark Tank. John is passionate about entrepreneurship. He recently spoke at Black Enterprise Magazine’s Entrepreneur’s Conference In Chicago. John also recently held a hangout on Google+ for high school age business students across the country.

The Business Journal reports that 10 lucky startups will pitch in front of a panel of judges including John in a similar manner to the way that contestant entrepreneurs pitch on Shark Tank. 15 notable sports figures and venture capitalists will be at the event which is sponsored by St. Louis University, the Information Technology Entrepreneur Network (iTen) and the Missouri Venture Forum.

Tickets are still available here.


Source: Business Journal

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