What You'll Hear at Startup Summit - 1

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What You'll Hear at Startup Summit - 1
So not too long ago, I wrote about how the week of November 5th is going to be a very productive week of startup and technology goodness, kicking off with the ExitEvent Startup Social the night of Monday, 11/5 and wrapping up with the IS Rocks music fest the night of Thursday, 11/8.

Sandwiched between those bits of is are one of the better events in the region, Internet Summit, preceded immediately by a brand new event from the people who brought you Internet Summit, Startup Summit.

Startup Summit is a 2-day, $95 entrepreneur-focused series of panels, demos, founder stories, and a reception of its own on Tuesday night. It's like Internet Summit, but for startups. It's brand new this year, so instead of going in not knowing what to expect, I got on the phone to a bunch of the speakers and asked them what they'll be talking about.

And by "got on the phone," I mean email, text, and tweets. Come on.

Aaron Houghton, who earlier this year sold iContact and more recently launched BoostSuite, is going to talk about failure, as in planning for it. "The art of being a startup founder is all about focus and making sure you can recover from a potential failure. I've started 15 companies and financially broke even on just the failures alone."

Automated Insights' own Robbie Allen is on the Entrepreneurs Seed Stage Panel. Having been on the trip raising $5.3 million and launching and selling several products over last two years, I can tell you he's good at early stage. "A lot is made about how difficult it is to start a company, raise money, etc. It is definitely challenging, but if you have the right drive and ambition, it is also the most rewarding thing you'll do in your career."

Justin Miller from dejaMi recently launched WedPics, and he'll be talking about the rather big idea he's bringing into reality. "With 450+ weddings in 13 countries in our first 2 months, our mission is to disrupt the way couples visually and socially plan, capture, and share their weddings."

Chris Heivly, half of Triangle Startup Factory, will be talking about "the advantages of an accelerator program in terms of advancing your product, your network and your fundraising." Their demo day is rapidly approaching on November 29th, and their application cycle opens up in about three months.

Windsor Circle's Matt Williamson, having raised about $900K to date, will be talking about their product and their market. "Customer feedback during user testing has been phenomenal. Retailers just can't get good retail analytics, and with Windsor Circle's integration hub we are in a unique position to show tremendous depth of retail data."

Now hitting the ground running (literally, I caught Anil traveling) after graduating TSF and landing an NC IDEA grant, Archive Social's Anil Chawla will elaborate on the industry he's trying to change. "I'll be talking about the 'other side, of social media for business -- legal and compliance concerns. We'll look at sticky situations, like actual legal cases, involving employee/employer rights, and we'll suggest ways for businesses to minimize risk and avoid legal issues in general."

Groundwork Labs grads Gema Touch, who turn physical surfaces into touch interfaces for the
control of digital content, will also be there. Co-founder Joanna Rogerson will be "looking for local companies to partner with for pilot trials, deployed in their relevant environments."

Of course, these are just seven of the local founders who will present, but you get the idea that the topics will be wide-ranging and the advice will come from people who are actually doing what they're saying. The full speaker list is here and you can register for Startup Summit here.