Palo Alto Software got a firsthand glimpse of our community’s entrepreneurial spirit by co-sponsoring Startup Weekend Eugene, a 54-hour business modeling and pitch competition open to anyone and everyone interested in sharpening their business skills. Startup Weekends take place in cities all over the world, bringing designers, developers, marketers, project managers, and startup enthusiasts together to test product ideas and launch startups. (If you’re interested in participating, find the Startup Weekend nearest you or bring it to your city.)
As for Startup Weekend Eugene, it was a lot of fun. The weekend was hosted by Fertilab Thinkubator from Friday, Oct. 11, to Sunday, Oct. 13, and sponsored by Palo Alto Software, Moss-Adams LLP, the City of Eugene, Gorilla Capital, Turrell Group, and many more contributors. Dozens of participants showed up with business ideas, which were enthusiastically pitched and then whittled down by popular vote to the business ideas that each Startup Weekend team wanted to develop for the competition.
Once the teams chose their ideas and got to work, on-site mentors circulated to help the teams research their prospective markets, develop their strategies, and account for costs. Three of the eight mentors were members of Palo Alto Software’s management team: CEO Sabrina Parsons, COO Noah Parsons, and Vice President of Business Development Caroline Cummings.
Our volunteer judges—Jeff Tunnell (developer, designer, entrepreneur, and gaming industry veteran), John Helmick (CEO & co-founder of Gorilla Capital), and Ann Carney Nelson (COO of Inpria Corporation)—selected Fourth Wall as the winning team. They received one free year of LivePlan to further develop their startup, and many other prizes and services from the event’s sponsors.
A huge thanks from all of us at Palo Alto Software to the Startup Weekend Eugene organizers: Joe Maruschak, Mark Davis, Geoff Miller, Jenny Miller, Jason Zollinger, Eric Harvey, and our very own Peter Thorsson. The energy and relationships produced from this event should help invigorate the entrepreneurial spirit of Eugene and its surrounding area, and we appreciate your vision for our city and the hard work you put into making this event a success. Cheers!