#LPGROW, It’s a Wrap.

On August 17, 2011, my desire to one day have a Canadian-wide Launch Party was finally realized as Bootup hosted the opening reception of the 2nd Annual Grow Conference in Vancouver, BC. From NB to BC, 15 startups from across Canada were selected to demo at the #LPGROW reception and mingle with over 750 investors, entrepreneurs and other influencers from all over Canada and the US.

Food.ee Demoing at #LPGROW

High Fives All Around
This was without a doubt our biggest Launch Party event ever. We could not have pulled it off without the support of our wonderful partners:

Payfirma
Vancouver born, Payfirma has answered Bootup’s prayers by finally solving our payment processing needs. Payfirma’s little chip plugs right into your iPhone to make it easy for you to take a credit card payment just about anywhere.  A huge thank you to the whole Payfirma team for being so supportive of LPGROW, Bootup and the whole startup community. Support this great, local company:

This may sound crazy but I have never just taken a cheque to pay for an event. We only partner with other companies and people, who truly care about and support entrepreneurs:
  • Initio Group – an Investment Group run by Managing Director, Mike Edwards. If you haven’t had a chance to meet or work with Mike yet, he’s one of the best angels an entrepreneur could ask for.
  • A Thinking Ape –  The Apes are making waves in Vancouver building seriously addictive games for the iPhone. The whole team rocks and we are happy they decided to call BC home. PS. They are Hiring!
  • LaBarge Weinstein –  A Canadian business law firm that totally gets startups. James Smith is a good guy, great lawyer and splits his time among startups from TDot to YVR. He’s on our top 3 referral list.
  • Freshbooks – One of Canada’s favorite companies makes it easy for startups and freelancers to save money and time on invoicing. Amazing product and customer service to boot! Bonus: Saul Colt is a genius WOM, who wears crazy pants.
  • Strutta – the platform behind the Launch @ GROW startup competition can help you create and manage beautiful branded promos online. Conversion without sacrificing your brand’s id! No coding necessary. (disclosure: Maura & Danny are founders)
  • Keith Spencer  – Keith is not only one of the best technology lawyers I know but someone, who dedicates a lot of personal time to help local startups and our tech community. They broke the mold with this guy.  Also, on our top 3 list.
  • Lonsdale Rentals – North Vancouver company Lonsdale Rentals came through again to support #LPGROW and provided us with all the things we needed to make the venue look great.  Super friendly staff. Don’t rent from anyone else!
  • Jet Cooper – A User Experience Agency in Toronto led by Satish Kanwar stepped up to help us with the LPGROW site, and twitter walls. Phew!
  • Layer 7 – Big thanks to Dimitri Sirota’s (one of the LP’s Co-founders) company for supporting our 11th event.
  • Queen’s Cross – From the beer to the flatbread pizzas, my good friend Chris Greenfield’s pub catered the entire event. Drop by his pub on Lonsdale in North Van. for a pint, ridiculously good food, and great staff. #Truth.
  • Yaletown Venture Partners-   I am looking forward to seeing YVP invest even more in the local startup community.
  • Urbandig – If you found yourself being served up a teacup sized portion of beer by a cheeky rabbit, you were not lost in a bad remake of Alice in Wonderland but rather at the UD booth. Big thanks to Team UD for throwing a great after party at the Hub in Yaletown! (disclosure: another company by Bootup ED, Maura)
  • Pop Chips & Smart Pics – If you nom nomed on their tasty chips or posed in the digital Photo booth, you have these two awesome companies to thank for all the fun.

Big thanks to our media sponsor, Techvibes for helping us spread the word and share your startup stories. True Story: Rob Lewis and his team can help you get your brand and message in front of thousands and thousands of readers. 

Bootup is run by a very passionate volunteer group of amazing entrepreneurs and startup peeps.  We seriously could not pull a rabbit out of a hat without their help (follow these awesome people now):

  • Sonia Ryan – Previously my right hand at Bootup and now a Trouble Maker at A Thinking Ape, Sonia hustled hard to make #LPGROW a stellar event. She’s awesome but you already knew that!
  • Janis Behan  – Janis is part of team Bootup and helped organize everything from setup to labels to bunny suits. We could not have done it without her.
  • Robin Leskiw – One of my dearest friends, who has been with me since LPV1 at Section 3.  She did everything from keep your wine glasses filled to clean up. ❤
  • Toan Dang, Eliz Sarobhasa, Alex Shipillo & Tammy Yik – Thank you so much for all of your help setting up that morning. Huge Help!
  • Pauline Lipska & David Cameron – You were amazing at working the crowd  and doing whatever was needed during the event.  So great.
  • Leila Pejman – A big supporter of ours and the tech community, Leila is always willing to lend a hand. Thanks for working the door and then some. Big Hugs!
  • Rohit Tandon – Designer, Producer and awesome DJ, spinned up some sweet tracks to set the mood.  Thank you.
  • Jodi Day – talented UI Designer and member of Team Strutta worked the door and made all of your beautiful name badges. I can always count on her.
  • Tina Hoang – Communications Manager at Strutta kept the line moving at the door and ran the entire #LPGROW Startup Competition from start to finish.  My hero.
  • Keighty Gallagher – Surprise, Surprise – one of our newest members of Team Strutta and pro hand sandwich maker helped Tina & Jodi keep things tight at the door. You Rock.
  • Mack Flavelle – also part of Team Bootup, Mack did everything from pick out super heros to wear a bunny suit. An entrepreneur himself, Mack knows how to hustle and #GSD.

Until Next Time
Thank you so much for joining us and showing the world that Canada is one of the best places in the world to bootup. We hope you made some new connections, had a chance to reunite with old friends, challenged some Apes to a game of Foosball, saved bags of money with Freshbooks, tasted one of Dave O’s favorite craft brews at the Urbandig booth, snapped a photo or two in the Pop Chips & Smart Pic’s Lounge and  maybe even closed some financing or landed a new customer or two.  Rock on.

You can find more photos of the event on Flickr, of course. 🙂

Advertisements

This Week in Tech Events, February 21-25, 2011

Good Morning Vancouver!  Hope everyone had an amazing weekend and enjoyed the beautiful sunshine.

This week is a busy one in tech as the VEF, BCTIA and Bootup are all hosting events we think you should check out:

Clean Tech Panel Discussion: How to Capitalize on Current Business Opportunities hosted by the VEF

  • Tuesday, February 22nd – 5:30pm
  • Vancity Theatre
  • If you haven’t bought your ticket yet, your outta luck.  This one is Sold Out!

Social Marketing Kung Fu, Yellow Belt – “Listening Everywhere” with Dave Olson hosted by Bootup

  • Wednesday, February 23 – 5:00-7:00pm
  • Bootup Entrepreneurial Society – 163 West Hastings, Suite 200 Vancouver
  • $30 for non-members

Mac McIntosh – Marketing for Leads and Sales hosted by BCTIA

  • Thursday, February 24th – 8:00am -12:30pm
  • The Sutton Place Hotel
  • Tickets are $155.
  • Friends of Bootup can receive 20% off by using the Promo Code: Bootup when registering.

If we missed  your event, feel free to let us know by leaving a comment below.

For more tech events and news, you can also check out our media partner, Techvibes.

Launch Party Vancouver 10 Gratitude

We kicked off the season with a bang at our 10th Launch Party Vancouver event on December 1st.  There were many familiar faces as well as newcomers, who dropped by Canvas Lounge to check out some fresh Vancouver startups, mingle with friends and colleagues and even sit on Santa’s lap:

Santa's Helper, kk, Santa, and Danielle Sipple

Launch Party is not just about the startups but about bringing our community together to have fun.  Thank you so much for joining us and for showing the world that Vancouver is one of the best places to start a company. We hope you had as much fun as we did.

Good peeps at LPV10. Photo Credit: John Biehler

Please Raise Your Glass to:
We have said it before but it has to be said again – Our sponsors + a whole lot of love and passion are what makes all of our events and existence possible.  If you are starting a company and need help finding the right lawyer, bank, SEO company etc, you should consider some of partners. They are giving back to the community and want to work with startups:

  • Canpages – fastest growing local search company in Canada with a nationwide API for smart phone application developers.
  • Clark Wilson – Mark Longo & Brock Smith are two of the best startup lawyers in town.
  • Outcome 3 – Need help with SEO? Want to improve traffic and conversion rates, contact Outcome 3. This team has helped Bootup with our site and many other startups in town.
  • HSBC –  This bank is interested in working with startups and has inexpensive packages that could work for you.
  • Fasken Martineau – Their office may boast one of the nicest views in town, but Keith Spencer and Shahrooz Navabi have definitely given back to the startup community many times. Good guys & lawyers.
  • KPMG – Most startups may not need the services of a big accounting firm in the early days but KPMG wants to work with and support startups at an early stage.  Don’t hesitate to reach out to learn how they can help you.
  • FMC – Lawyer, Gal Smolar has worked in the Internet startup Industry for a long time and loves it. He moved to YVR via Israel. Reach out.
  • Strutta – the platform behind the LPV10 Startup Competition. (disclosure: Maura & Danny are founders)

Big thanks to our Media Sponsors for helping us spread the word and share your startup stories:

  • Techvibes – If you want to get the word out about your startup or an event, then look no further than local tech blog, Techvibes. Rob Lewis had to miss LPV10 (a 1st!!) to cover the Canadian New Media Awards in Toronto but as always, did a great job spreading the word ahead of time.
  • The Next Web – Tris Hussey, who is now writing for the Next Web Canada did a great job interviewing of all of the LPV10 Startup Showoffs.  Thanks Tris!  If you haven’t seen their videos yet, check them out!
  • Startup DigestJon Chui, the curator of YVR Startup Digest is doing an amazing job keeping us all informed of weekly tech events. If you are feeling out of the loop, sign up to receive your Monday morning update in your inbox every week.

We may be a small team by day but when we need help, awesome people like this always have our back:

  • Jodi Day – talented UI Designer and member of Team Strutta, who makes us laugh and kept things rolling at the LPV10 door!
  • Chrissy Chrzan – Communications Junkie, who happens to be new to Vancouver, made sure everyone got thru the line on time.
  • Maral Artang and marketing pro, Nicole Steele helped check everyone in-and-out at LPV10.
  • Laurent Munier – Big shout out to Laurent for helping us with event logistics and planning.
  • John Biehler – Thanks for all the great snaps of LPV10, JB.
  • Lyal Avery – For making sure Santa showed up on time and for always being there.
  • Jeff Magnusson – For lending a hand with set-up and LPV10 candy canes for Santa. 🙂

And Last but DEFINITELY NOT LEAST:

Sonia Ryan – is my right hand at Bootup.  Thanks for hustling everyday and caring so much about Bootup and the startup community.  You are the best. I have enjoyed working with you and watching you come into your own this past year.  BAM! ❤

Sonia Ryan, Shelly Roche, Derek Shanahan Photo Credit: Weston Trimestra

You can find more photos of the event on Flickr, of course. 🙂  Until next time, keep on rockin’ Vancouver

Launch Party Vancouver 9 Wrap Up

When we started LPV in September 2007, our goal was to shine a big bright light on the startup community and help connect entrepreneurs with investors, potential partners and their peers. Looking at photos from the last 9 events, it is clear that our community is growing and that the best of Canadian tech has consistently showed up to support and celebrate the latest crop of Internet startups in the great Northwest. It’s our hope that the startups you have seen demo at Launch Parties 1-9 will grow into the next generation of Canadian super angels.

Martin Ertl of Contractually, LPV9 Startup Competition People’s Choice Winner
Photo credit: Jeremy Lim

Our ninth edition of Launch Party Vancouver on June 17th was definitely our biggest event yet.  As Debbie Landa tweeted, LPV9 was definitely a “who’s who of Canadian tech.” We were thrilled to have Chris Albinson, Katherine Barr, Dan Martell, Debbie Landa, and Anthony Lee from the C100 fly up from Silicon Valley as well as Chris Arsenault and Shawn Abbott from iNovia Capital in the house.  A great big thank you to all of our out of town guests for making the trek to Vancouver.  Go Canada!

Chris Albinson of the C100 Organization and Panorama Capital
Photo Credit: Jeremy Lim

Put your hands together for…
We rely on public and private donations and a whole lot of sweat and sometimes tears to make this all possible.  Many thanks to Sonia Ryan and volunteers Melissa Joaquin, Angela Baldonero, Tarlan Klo, Tina Hoang, and Laurent Munier for working the door and helping us set-up.

We could not do any of this without the backing of our LPV9 Partners:

  • BCIC – the lead organization charged with advancing innovation and commercialization in British Columbia.
  • Canpages – fastest growing local search company in Canada with a nationwide API for smart phone application developers.
  • Clark Wilson – BC’s Law Firm for Business. Mark Longo & Brock Smith are the go to guys.
  • HSBC – the world’s local bank with startup banking packages.
  • Fasken Martineau – a leading international business law and litigation firm. Keith Spencer and Shahrooz Navabi are the real deal.
  • Strutta – the platform for creating online contests and the brains behind the LPV9 Startup Competition.
  • Lonsdale Rentals – the place to go for all of your corporate and private party rental needs. From bar rentals to glasses, they have it all.
  • Pixstar – Pixstar Photo booths provide the perfect memento to remember any party.
  • Mission Hill – Mission Hill has an amazing selection of Okanagan wines. They featured Rigamorole red and white at LPV9.
  • Russell Brewing – committed to brewing 100% natural, real Canadian beer. And it shows!
  • Jeremy Lim – Check out Jeremy’s awesome LPV9 photo set on Flickr and contact him for your event.

Our Media Sponsors rock:

  • Techvibes – our favorite technology blog does an amazing job highlighting all of the LPV9 startups and covering daily tech news in cities across Canada and the United States. And best of all, Techvibe’s President & Editor, Rob Lewis always shows up as promised   ——->
  • Startup Digest – All you have to do is enter your email address and choose your favorite hubs to receive the best startup events in your inbox every week.  Jon Chui runs the weekly Vancouver newsletter.

Thank you all for making LPV9 so great!

This week in Tech Events – November 23-27, 2009

Michael Jonsson, Maura Rodgers, Rob Lewis

Michael Jonsson, Maura Rodgers, Rob Lewis

Before writing this post, I checked our Upcoming page and hopped on over to our media partner, Techvibes site to see if there were additional events of interest I should include. On the front page of Techvibes, I stumbled upon a similar post by Rob Lewis that sums up the week ahead nicely.  I added some ticket pricing, selected the events on our list and included it below for your convenience: (Thanks, Rob!)

New Media BC’s Vancouver iPhone Forum 2009

  • Tuesday, November 24th – 8:00am
  • BCIT Downtown Campus
  • $125 for members, $175 for non-members

Innovation Camp Round 2

  • Tuesday, November 24th – Saturday, November 28th
  • Kontent Creative
  • $149

26th Angel Forum

  • Tuesday, November 24th – 7:30am – 6:00pm
  • SFU Harbour Centre

Vancouver Enterprise Forum: An Evening with Mike McDerment

  • Tuesday, November 24th – 5:30pm – 8:00pm
  • Vancity Theatre
  • $45

How to Build a Wep App Business with Michael McDerment of FreshBooks

  • Wednesday, November 25th
  • V Lounge at Earl’s in Yaletown
  • Sold Out!

What Game Design can teach about Business Success

  • Wednesday, November 25th – 6:00pm – 8:00pm
  • Vancouver Public Library
  • $50 for members of IIMA, $60 for non-members

BC Wireless Health Forum II

  • Thursday, November 26th
  • The Sutton Place Hotel
  • $40 for members of WinBC, $60 for non-members
Post your Event on Techvibes:
We are in the process of designing our new site and moving forward, we will be posting all of our events on Techvibes Events and Upcoming. We suggest you do the same.
Bootup Events

If you would like to be notified of upcoming Bootup only events, please sign-up..  You can choose what type of events you want to be notified about from networking to investment pitch opportunities.  We’ll email you several weeks before events to let you know about registration deadlines and other important dates.
Have a great week!

This Week in Tech Events

There are several tech events happening in Vancouver this week on the Bootup calendar that you may want to check out:

For our friends in Toronto:

Add your Event

If you would like us to know about your tech event, please add it to our event group and post it on Techvibes Events.

Upcoming Tech Events

Sign up to our event list to find out more about upcoming Bootup Tech Events.  You can choose what type of events you want to be notified about from networking to investment pitch opportunities.  We’ll email you several weeks before events to let you know about registration deadlines and other important dates.

Have a great week!

How to get started in Vancouver Tech

Trevor O is one of the founders of Layerboom Systems. This was originally posted on his personal blog at http://trevoro.ca/blog/2009/09/02/how-to-get-started-in-vancouver-tech/

I’ve been meeting quite a few people who are new to Vancouver and are looking to get involved in the local Web and Tech scenes. There’s quite a bit going on, and Google is your friend, but if you want to save some time here are the best places to go, meet people and see what’s going on. There’s also a score for how nerdy or business-y (?) the event is on a scale of 1-10.

Do your research

Nerdy: 5
Business: 4

Find out what you’re interested and search for companies based in Vancouver that do what you love. If you’re enthusiastic people will make time for you. Ask someone out for coffee or a pint and just talk. Don’t try and get a job, just figure out what’s going on. Like any “scene” you’re likely to hear conflicting viewpoints. Keep an open mind. Look for and talk with local bloggers and tech reporters. Look for events happening in your area. If you’re interested in Open source projects, find out if the people who work on them are in the area.

Democamp Vancouver

Nerdy: 7
Business: 5

Like most unconferences, Democamp is a loosely organized evening event where the people that attend make up the conference. In this case you bring an idea, and the idea is your demo. You don’t have to present, and it’s a good way to meet people that are interested in starting something new, or are working a project already. Democamp doesn’t happen nearly as often as it should, so if you’re interested in helping out there, check out the site and get in touch.

Launch Party Vancouver

Nerdy: 4
Business: 8

Every few months local entrepreneurs who are launching their projects meet up to celebrate all their hard work. Walk around and talk with people and get to know the people behind these projects. Most of the time the executives are presenting but ask to chat with some of the developers if that’s more up your alley. This is usually a very social event where you’re bound to meet a lot of interesting people – just don’t be shy.

Bootup Labs

Nerdy: 8
Business: 6

Bootup Labs is a local startup incubator which helps companies go from “zero to fundable”. The offices are located at 375 Water St, in Gastown and house a rotating group of Vancouver based startups which are always looking for talented help. Bootup has an open door policy so if you’re new to the area you can generally just pop in, but I suggest getting in touch with them first to arrange a quick (<30 minute) chat. Everyone is really friendly, and it’s a good way to plug in, or at least get pointed in the right direction.  Bootup helps run a few of the events in town, so pay attention to their upcoming feed for things that are happening

Techvibes

Nerdy: 5
Business: 5

Techvibes is a tech community blog and business directory. It’s a really good way to get to know which businesses are in the area and what they do. They also publish a list of events happening in town that range from an Entrepreneurial to Developer focus.

VEF

Nerdy: 2
Business: 10

If you’re more into the business and entrepreneurial side of things, I suggest checking out Vancouver Enterprise Forum or VEF. VEF hosts events on a monthly basis and it’s a great way to connect with other like-minded individuals.

Developer Meetups

Nerdy: 10
Business: 3

There are plenty of developer meetups happening in town. The umbrella meetup for all of these is the VanDev network. Join that and you’re bound to meet quite a few people. The most popular is the Ruby/Merb/Rails meetup which has events on a monthly basis.

I hope that’s enough to get you started! Let me know if there’s anything else you want added to the list.