Northeast Ohio has tons of startups and entrepreneurs, but rarely do they get together and cross the barriers of geography, accelerator, or office to connect and build relationships. Founder Fest brings all of the area’s startup founders together for an afternoon for food, discussions, and maybe a minor amount of beer.


Founders from Cleveland, Akron, Canton, Youngstown, Wooster, and everywhere in between will be in attendance. If you’re the current, recent, or future founder of a startup in software, physical goods, food, health, or any other product industries, please make the effort to come out and take part in our community.


Mark your calendar, Founder Fest is going down October 22nd from 2pm to 9pm in the heart of MidTown. Your ticket gets you great chow from some of the area’s best food trucks, copious amounts of beer, and awesome programming created for and by your fellow entrepreneurs. We'll be having things going at JumpStart's office, the MidTown Tech Hive, and Dunham Tavern all afternoon.

What's the agenda?

We're going to have five discussions about the process of starting and running a business where everyone can contribute:


1:00 pm Registration Begins (JumpStart Conference Room)

2:00 pm Welcome & Kickoff (JumpStart Conference Room)

2:45 - 3:30 pm Discussions

This Ain't Shark Tank: It's not all unison intros and royalties in perpetuity. Raising money for your startup can be painful, cringeworthy, slow, and hilarious. Hear stories from some of our region's most experienced fundraisers and learn some tips for running your process. (JumpStart Conference Room)

Maker vs. Manager: The hardest part of starting up is often transitioning from spending your day making things, to spending it managing the business and your team. Discuss the maker vs. manager struggle with a few of our areas smartest and most experienced entrepreneurs and company runners. (Tech Hive Training Room)

3:45 - 4:30 pm Discussions

Oh Shit, I Raised Money: What's more terrifying than trying to raise money? Figuring out what to do once you've raised it! Explore ways to keep the momentum up after the wires hit with founders that overcame the Seed to Series A slump. (JumpStart Conference Room)

Strategic Outcomes for Your Business: If you don't have an end goal in mind, how can you plan the route for success? Whether that goal is making the best product for your market or selling to Google for a billion dollars, talk through developing a strategic plan for your business with founders who have seen success and failure. (Tech Hive Training Room)

4:45 - 5:30 pm Discussion

Founders Gonna Found: What's next for our region's startup community? How do we build a sustainable ecosystem led by founders and empowered to make a difference? An open forum with leaders of some of our regions top companies and organizations where you can make yourself heard. (Dunham Tavern)

5:30 - 8:00 pm Food & Drinks & Networking (Dunham Tavern)


Interested in Sitting on a Panel?

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