There’s lots happening in San Diego for ambitious entrepreneurs and tech enthusiasts. Here are some highlight events and competitions to know about!
Over 150 Events, 10 Tracks, 5 Days
San Diego Startup Week (SDSW) is the region’s premier catalyst for innovation, creativity, and entrepreneurialism. Featuring a week of scheduled events, panels, and revelry in the heart of downtown San Diego, Startup Week showcases leading innovators in Software as a Service (SaaS), consumer Internet, mobile tech, hardware, and defense tech. Participants include San Diego’s brightest entrepreneurs, top-tier regional and national investors, strategic advisors, and high profile community and political supporters, all of whom contribute to San Diego’s thriving startup ecosystem.
Startup Week Highlight Events
Kicking off with Opening Ceremony
SDVG hosts Keynote Speaker, Mark Suster
Entrepreneurs Trek the Streets Downtown for the Startup Crawl
SD Tech Founders Showcased 7 Growing Startups at Demo Night
The 2016 San Diego Startup Festival at Quartyard Open to the Public with Startups Tables and Live Music.
Startup Week is sooner than you think…
Save some space on your calendar, June 12th — 18th!
Last year, Startup Week brought out an unprecedented number of startups, entrepreneurs and community leaders. We listened to your feedback and are making this year even better.
You might remember the stage-focused Tracks from last year — tailoring the experience to people the Idea phase, launching a startup in the Seed phase, and gearing up to expand in the Growth phase.
New this year! We’re adding industry-specific Tracks in:
- Defense/Cyber Security
- Bio/Med Tech
- Brew Tech
- Cross-Border Resources
Whether it’s attending, volunteering to help out at an event or run one, speak on a topic or contribute an event as your organization, or be a sponsor — we’d love to see you!
San Diego Startup Week (SDSW) is the region’s premier catalyst for innovation, creativity, and entrepreneurialism. Featuring a week of scheduled events, panels, and revelry in the heart of downtown San Diego, Startup Week showcases leading innovators in Software as a Service (SaaS), consumer Internet, mobile tech, hardware, and defense tech.
Participants include San Diego’s brightest entrepreneurs, top-tier regional and national investors, strategic advisors, and high profile community and political supporters, all of whom contribute to San Diego’s thriving startup ecosystem.
San Diego Startup Week is a chance to get an inside look at the startups making changes in San Diego and beyond. A full week of events, panels, and festivities right in the heart of downtown San Diego.
Explore leading innovators in Software as a Service (SaaS), consumer Internet, mobile tech, hardware, and defense tech alongside San Diego’s brightest entrepreneurs, top-tier regional and national investors, strategic advisors, and high profile community and political supporters.
If you’ve been to San Diego Startup Week in the past, you’ll notice that we’re doing things a bit different this year. We’ve designed educational tracks to match each unique phase in an entrepreneur’s and startup’s life cycle.
Idea Track: If you’re interested in learning about startups, testing an idea that may turn into a business, finding a co-founder or simply joining a startup, this track is for you.
Development Track: This track will help you identify the local resources and communities that can enable technical co-founders to build a fantastic product.
Seed Track: The Seed Track is focused on taking your startup to the next level by helping you prove your MVP, get traction, and prepare for seed financing.
Scale Track: If you’re in the growth phase and have already got a product and some customers, but are looking to scale, hop on this track.
Social Events: While not track specific, these events will be anything from meetups to happy hours to dinners. Attend these events to meet and mingle with local entrepreneurs.
Whew! San Diego Startup Week is behind us. I hope you were there, met someone interesting, enjoyed yourself &/or learned something. Thanks again to all our sponsors and volunteers that made it all possible – we couldn’t have done it without your efforts and support.
Personally, I am glad for many reasons, but generally 1) thought it was overall a success and am proud of what a small team was able to put together, 2) it was a huge improvement over what we were able to do last year and 3) we can finally relax a bit and get back to personal priorities.
In the spirit of transparency, I wanted to share some takeaways, thoughts, and requests with the community. The organizers had a recap meeting a week after the event and synthesized your feedback from the survey (+ we want to hear more in the comments!).
- Attendance. ~600-700 total attendees (~300 week long passes purchased, lots of one-off event passes sold) Almost all events were full, except end of week (burnout?)
- Quality & Involvement. General caliber of events was vastly improved, still a range. 15 total events from 8 different startup organizations (+ some more the appeared last minute). Top 3 events (by ratings) were (in order): Opening Ceremonies, Tech Crawl, Mentor Night
- PR. Attention in local press about the event, a few national pieces, even some TV spots!
- Demographics. Especially impressed with the m/f balance (more than I’ve seen in any city)
- Better organization / information for events ahead of time
- Too many parties. One opening party and one to close would have probably been enough. Parties didn’t have the same attendance or energy as the week progressed.
- Too many demos. While demos have their place, our feeling was there were ~4-5 pitch/demo-centric events within the same number of days. The events that were either geared towards topical issues or smaller interactions (or just fun) faired better.
- Some events will be cut/changed as the response was only mediocre.
- Moving the date so we have students in town
- Topical tracks. Perhaps by stage (idea/team-building phase, pre-seed, post-funding) or biggest issues (like GTM or Customer Development or Fundraising)
- Small interaction activities (more events like Mentor Night – one idea we plan to try is to enable groups of 4-8 people to grab dinner around town)
- Career-fair type event for startups to recruit talent & interns (hopefully open-air)
Finally, we need your help! If you came to an event and want to help out (either during the year on some of our regular events or for next startup week – please let us know! Email me and we’ll find a spot for you.
Please feel free to comment or send us information / suggestions below. Thanks again to the rest of the team, the sponsors and the volunteers for making it happen!
Austin is a co-founder of Startup San Diego, SD Startup Week and serial entrepreneur. His last company went through the Y Combinator program and was previously a mentor at TechStars & DreamIt while working as a venture capitalist. He survived MIT with degrees in EECS and Business and UPenn’s Wharton School for his MBA. He grew up in San Diego and returned 1.5 years ago on a mission to improve the ecosystem. For more about Austin – check out his blog: aneudecker.com where he regularly posts about observations, tips & tricks for startups and his other passions (film, food & philosophy).