Startup Supernova: We Want Builders!

| by Justin

Entrepreneurs were abound at last night at the Startup Supernova Meetup. Held at the swag Mozilla Labs Vancouver; founders, hustlers, and hopefuls met to swap business cards, hear pitches, and learn all about how Growlab is the solution to tech startups in Vancouver.

The night started out with a crash course in the legal implications of having a startup, a lot of good information I’m sure was eye-opening to a lot of people- legal seems to always be an afterthought, although we learned it shouldn’t be.

Next came the pitches- the  rules were you have 3 minutes with slides to present your product/team/ideas, but at the last minute it was changed to 30 seconds and no slides- now we see who can hustle. Some deal aggregators, a note-sharing system peppered with rewards geared to college students, a data-encryption team looking for a CEO, even a condiment time-share initiative- the night did not lack for creative ideas and clever solutions.

Soon after Jason Bailey took the floor, first telling his favourite story that never gets old: how he saw opportunity with the SuperRewards platform, and was able to execute where bigger companies slogged through bureaucratic red tape. After fielding some questions with his trademark bluntness (hope that poor B. Comm grad got his drink), he launched into the biggest story for Vancouver Tech in a long time: Growlab.

We learned about the goal of Growlab, the overwhelming response in the few weeks of applications, the whip-smart investors that comprise the core of Growlab, and what it takes to be Growlab material- builders who have to build and can’t stop building. Most of Jason’s time was dedicated to the last part- Blasting MBA’s, big companies, and 6 month MVPs in favour of small teams with real products made now.

The night was wrapped up with some more Q&A, with Jason providing both the question (“Someone ask me why I denied their Growlab application”) and the answers (“Because it sucked!”)… Actually he answered honestly, denying applications due to not having enough experience in their product to be an asset to them, or questioning the business model of a team.

Jason’s presentation was half rant, half advertisement, and all informative. If you missed it, and are interested in seeing it yourself, he will be speaking again at the Vancouver Enterprise Forum this Friday at the Republic. The event is nearly full, but you may be able to reserve a spot here. If you have to opportunity to check it out, do it- it is the best place to meet the players and play the game.

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