Day 3 In Review

I arrived at Startup Weekend University of Michigan as the final minutes of prep time were winding down. All were scrambling to finish their pitches and projects before the 4:30pm stop time. The 10 teams: Cofound, ´╗┐Chefsperience, Alpha List, Food Circles, Fun Bun,,, Location Based Reminders, and Lrn2txt worked their tails off for 54 hours to complete a working company, hoping to score the grand title of winner of the first Startup Weekend University of Michigan.

The teams were spread out in the soon to be “TechArb,” a space that will be dedicated to start-ups needing an area to get their companies up and running. A contest was run to to try to come up with new names for the space, the crowd unanimously voted to keep the already existing TechArb branding.

After the crowd sourcing, Ben Kazez of Mobiata arrived and gave a presentation on his startup and now very successful company. He spoke on the origins of Mobiata, and both the struggles and achievements that got them acquired by travel search engine Expedia.

There was also a presentation by Michael Gaiss of Venture Capital, HCP who flew in all the way from Boston. He spoke on some amazing entrepreneurs and the path to their successful companies. Michael also spoke about the Highland Summer Entrepreneurship program and other programs and opportunities available through Highland, as well as some very helpful tips to the new start-ups.

Both Ben and Michael will serve as judges on the panel that picks the winning start-up. Stay tuned for the final pitches to see which team claims the ultimate prize….

Thanks to Audrey [@techsocialite] of Girls in Tech Detroit for the guest post!

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