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Innovation & Job News

Secrets of Philly Startup Weekend 2.0 revealed

It's a super awesome Startup Weekend 2.0. Tickets are almost sold out for the Oct. 14 event. On the heels of the first wildly successful Startup Weekend held in January, 2011, the second gathering has a new venue, better food and more caffeine, according to organizer Brad Oyler.

"We sold 95 tickets in two weeks," he says. "The business development tickets are already sold out. We  want to balance it out with developers and designers."

This time, Startup Weekend moves west and will be held at Drexel University's Earle Mack School of Law, in a brand new building with a big auditorium and the use of a dozen classrooms, says Oyler, who helped create the first weekend at University of the Arts, which drew national attention for winner Jameson Detweiler and his team's Launchrock.

"This time around, there's a lot more hype," says Oyler. "People have taken notice, and we've got all the biggest venture capital firms supporting Startup Weekend and getting involved."

The biggest change in programming, according to Oyler, is a new collaboration with the newly launched Skillshare, resulting in classes throughout the weekend instead of just speakers all day. Also, the Drexel Law venue provides several private rooms for top secret entrepreneurial exchanges.

Otherwise, says Oyler, the program will follow a similar curriculum to the previous weekend. Friday night pitches will start earlier. Saturday and part of Sunday will be devoted to building in teams comprised of designers, developers and entrepreneurs. The weekend ends with demos, judging, and awarding of prizes, which include 4 to 5 Dell Boomi tablets and computers, plus legal services from Morgan Lewis to each of the top three winning teams.

As far as judges, the well-rounded list keeps getting bigger, says Oyler, and currently includes Gil Beyda, Managing Partner at Genacast Ventures, Basecamp Business founder Mel Baiada, Morgan Lewis attorney Stephen Goodman, Boomi CEO Bob Moul, Tracey Welson-Rossman from Chariot Solutions, and Ellen Weber, executive director of Robin Hood Ventures.

While attendance is currently capped at 120, Oyler says that's a conservative figure and may open up in the coming weeks. Currently, a few limited ticket types are still available and range in price from $40 to $75.

Source: Brad Oyler, Startup Weekend Philadelphia
Writer: Sue Spolan
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