Whoa! Jeff Hoffman The Real “Negotiator” To Keynote Everywhere Else Cincinnati

Jeff Hoffman, Priceline, VentureCamp, Everywhere Else Cincinnaty, EECincy, Startup Conference, Scott Case

Earlier this year at Everywhere Else Memphis, Priceline founding CTO and Starutp America CEO Scott Case took to the stage to spread the important gospel of startup communities and culture. Case has spoken at events across the country and in a lot of “flyover” states, focusing especially on the earlier stage startups.

This time around we are honored to have Jeff Hoffman as one of our main keynote speakers at Everywhere Else Cincinnati. Hoffman is best known as the co-founder of the Priceline.com family of companies.  He’s also been the CEO of uBid and Color Jar. He’s a regular mentor for startups and pens a great column on innovation and entrepreneurship for Inc Magazine.

While he’s a very esteemed and successful entrepreneur, back in May at the Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Rio de Janeiro he proudly announced  “I don’t spend time launching business plans anymore, I launch entrepreneurs.” That’s why he is one of the co-founders, founding advisors, and founding mentors for Indianapolis based VentureCamp. Hoffman calls it a “fully immersive startup ecosystem.”

After launching 7 successful companies (including Priceline and another travel company that was acquired by American Express), Hoffman has decided his life’s work from here on out is launching entrepreneurs. He’s been speaking for years on entrepreneurship but really enjoys getting into the nitty gritty with the young, vibrant, and disruptive crowd.

While speaking at that conference in Rio, Hoffman passionately spoke about the entrepreneur and how if the entrepreneur has a bad experience upfront “we could lose that entrepreneur.”

When Nibletz Co-Founder Nick Tippmann attended Venture Camp’s demo day earlier this summer, he noticed that the founders were talking about how VentureCamp focused on teaching them entrepreneurial skills, critical thinking, and decision making and not just how to put your plan on a business model canvas and make a Power Point. This focus came directly from Hoffman.

If you were at Everywhere Else in Memphis and saw Scott Case speak, you know he does an amazing job talking about startup communities and the value the community brings to the table. During Hoffman’s keynote we will hear about something equally as important: the entrepreneur.

For Hoffman’s full bio click here.

Get your tickets or Startup Avenue booth below.


Jeff Hoffman image, UnerasonableGroup Youtube.

VentureCamp Gives New Meaning to “Go Big or Go Home”

VentureCamp has everything an entrepreneur needs from an accelerator:

  • top-notch mentorship
  • a smart cohort
  • a curriculum developed by leading investors

Oh…and a mansion.

Indiana startup, accelerator, Venturecamp

Looks like something out of The Bachelor, right? That’s actually not too far off. Besides building companies and receiving world class mentorship, VentureCamp participants live together in the mansion. And, it’s all being captured on video.

VentureCamp obviously isn’t your typical accelerator.

First, rather than accept teams that are already building products, VentureCamp only accepted individuals. And, they focused on women and minorities, groups that are typically left out of the venture capital game. After the first week, the participants were split up into teams, they chose a company, and had 7 weeks to build it out. The whole experience can be likened to Startup Weekend, but on a bigger, grander scale.

Second, the whole thing is housed in Indianapolis’s Kessler Mansion, owned by one of the camp’s backers, Chad Folkening. The idea is to give the entrepreneurs an idea of what life could be like, in the event their companies go big.

Finally, from morning to night, the whole thing is filmed. Camera crews hang out in all the meetings, strategy sessions, and dinners, capturing the formation of three new companies. The footage will be turned into a “docu-series,” shown first online, but the team hopes to eventually put it on TV. VentureCamp backer and senior advisor Patrick Mellody told USA Today that the film will promote other VentureCamps held around the world.

Despite some of the glitz, VentureCamp entrepreneurs have been hard at work for the last 8 weeks. With mentors like Priceline’s Jeff Hoffmann,they receive outstanding feedback on their business models and pitch.

And, speaking of pitch, what’s the one thing all accelerators have in common?

Demo Day!

Today is the first VentureCamp Demo Day. They are launching (and hoping to fund) 3 companies:

  • TourNative is a marketplace that connects travelers with locals.
  • YumDom helps home cooks find just the recipe they need for their lifestyle and includes 6 iPhone apps tailored to different dietary needs.
  • PlanSoon connects people with someone new to go do something fun.

It should be interesting to watch what comes from VentureCamp, both the new companies and the docu-series. Whatever it is, this team definitely knows how to “go big.”