Socially distanced startup pitching: Founder Institute’s Founder Showcase goes virtual

December 15, 2020


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The Founder Institute’s Founder Showcase, the accelerator’s flagship quarterly startup pitch competition, will close out 2020 with a virtual pitch competition, 12 years after it debuted in Silicon Valley. The free event will take place on Wednesday, December 16 from 12pm to 3pm EST (9am to 12pm PST).

Launched in 2008 as a small, 150-person event meant to help “democratize Silicon Valley,” the Showcase has since grown to feature hundreds more startups, investors and leading entrepreneurs. Past speakers include the likes of Tesla founder Elon Musk, Box co-founder Aaron Levie, and TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington and past winners include successful startups like Udemy and Thumbtack.

Seed-stage startups from across the globe will pitch their ventures in front of an audience of leading investors. They also get the chance to learn and connect with other entrepreneurs and venture capitalists via networking sessions.

Tim Chang. Image Credit: Mayfield Fund

Keynoting this quarter’s Founder Showcase will be Tim Chang, Partner at Mayfield Fund, the early-stage investment firm that has made investments over 50 years in companies from Compaq to Lyft and Poshmark.

Mr. Chang was twice named to the Midas List of the top 100 venture capitalists. He led Mayfield’s investments in MOAT (acquired by Oracle), Basis (acquired by Intel), Fitmob (acquired by Classpass), Ript Labs, Grove Collaborative, Massdrop, Pillow, HealthTap, 3Drobotics, and Lantern.

Before joining Mayfield, Mr. Chang had a long career in venture capital as a Partner at Norwest Venture Partners, a Principal at Gabriel Venture Partners, and before that he worked as a tri-lingual development engineer for General Motors, working across China, Korea, and Japan.

Adeo Ressi at the 14th Founder Showcase. Image Credit:

Founder Institute, the organizer of Founder Showcase, is the world’s largest early-stage startup accelerator. They work across the globe with chapters in over 200 cities and have over 4,500 portfolio companies with an estimated portfolio value of $30 billion. The accelerator was founded in 2009 by Adeo Ressi and Jonathan Greechan in a classroom at Stanford University.

The accelerator helps fresh startups raise funding, build up their team, gain entry into other seed-accelerators, generate traction, build a product, and also helps entrepreneurs map out and execute the transition from employee to founder.

At the onset of the coronavirus outbreak in 2020, FI took their program completely virtual for the first time. At the time, CEO Adeo Ressi commented, “Our application volume is as high as it has ever been, because times like these are when smart entrepreneurs build the future.”

Those interested in attending the Founder Showcase can register for free here.


Disclosure: This article mentions a client of an Espacio portfolio company.


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