A month ago today I spent a fair amount of time discussing the business of selling to startups, so it was with interest that I read today’s TechStars news. You can get the news first hand via Alex, Brad or David‘s blogs, but essentially the program is this: would-be startups apply, and 20-30 winners are rewarded with $15K in seed money, educational panels and the like, networking opportunities galore, and finally an opportunity to pitch their idea to VC’s.
Like CRV’s Entrepreneur Idol or Paul Graham’s Y Combinator, this is designed to reward both startups and potential investors: the former get the benefit of oversight, experience and occasionally cash, while the latter get an early – and perhaps exclusive – look at the up and coming players.
Personally, I think the concept is terrific, whether or not they churn out the next Google. The capital risk is low, as it is with other similar efforts, but the upside is potentially high. I’d love to see these more widespread; unlikely as it might seem, I’d love to see a Maine flavor. And perhaps there’s something some of our larger customers could do in the space, either independently or through existing programs such as Tech Stars. Or Mashup Camp, for that matter.
Disclaimer: None – I haven’t been contacted about the program and am not involved.