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Get Started; Resources for Entrepreneurs

Have a great idea? There are a number of places where you can get information to start packaging your idea and find funding.

Getting started means getting a plan in place, bouncing your idea off people who have been there, selecting the type of funding you are looking for, and making a myrid of decisions on everything from law firms to service providers. Listed below are a set of non profits who have ongoing information and workshop programs to help get an idea packaged.

When you think you are packaged and ready to seek funding it is time for a Venture Capital Conference, with either a local or regional focus. Venture Capital Conferences are forums at which venture capitalists meet to exchange information and hear presentations from companies seeking funding. Generally, the sponsor of the conference screens applicants who want to present their companies' funding needs. The applicants who pass the screening then describe their opportunities in short oral presentations to an audience of investors. Interested investors can follow up with the entrepreneurs later in the conference.

The best sources of information about upcoming venture capital conferences are local entrepreneur or angel investor associations, local accounting or law firms, which may cosponsor them, local venture firms, which may participate as plan screeners, and local colleges and universities with entrepreneurship courses, which may provide facilities or professors as speakers.

Hand in hand with the Venture Conferences are invitation only product showcase events sponsored by media companies who have readership in the startup or venture market. Vendors are screened and preselected to attend these events which are frequented by both Venture Capitalists as well as large companies looking for acquisitions or partnering opportunities. It is often said that the "buzz" on a company starts at these showcases. Product can be shown at these showcases before a company is completely packaged providing valuable feedback. Resources for Product Showcases include:

  • www.upside.com (several)
  • www.redherring.com
  • www.demo.com (IDG)

Written by Judy Kong, Analyst at TECHdivas.com