Notes from the Road: The Rise of the Rest Denver Tour

October 6, 2016

6:30 pm

The Mile High city never disappoints, with a vibrant landscape and 300 days of sun intertwined with an active downtown filled with modern skyscrapers, one can’t help but to breathe in the fresh air of entrepreneurship that carries throughout the state.

On Tuesday, the Rise of the Rest Tour continued in Denver, Colorado. We had a great time around the community, watched Steve Case make sugar mushrooms for a specialty cake at Craftsy and listened to Brad Feld, co-founder of Techstars, managing director at Foundry Group and author, talk about startup life in Denver.

We also learned that the city of Denver metro area is called home to some top industries including aerospace, healthcare, telelcommunication and energy. Big name companies in these industries that have a strong presence  include, Oracle, IBM, Comcast and Qwest.

Hiking down the tech titan mountain, you’ll find a well-educated community where close to 43.7 percent of the population holds a bachelor degree or higher and STEM workers who make up 22 percent of the workforce. The focus on education is seen throughout their school systems and institutions and we found a plethora of coding boot camps offered around the city from Galvanize and General Assembly.

What we are really here to talk about is the startup and entrepreneurship community. Denver is the home of startups such as Mapquest, Photobucket and Rally Software and ranked as the 4th best city for young entrepreneurs by NerdWallet. If you take a drive about 30 miles north of Denver you’ll find the beautiful and thriving city of Boulder, home to the global accelerator Techstars and VC firm Foundry Group.

If you are wondering about capital flowing like spring water, it’s definitely something to drink up. We learned that 52 percent of Colorado’s startup funding went to local companies, and in 2015, there were 59 exits which earned Denver tech companies a total of $2.7 billion. Not bad eh?

We captured the talk with Brad Feld and Steve Case and it’s worth a listen!

Brad Feld & Steve Case are joined by Denver startup founders Lee Mayer, Jenna Walker and Jacqueline Ros

Watch Steve Case make sugar mushrooms for a fairytale cake at Craftsy in Denver

At the end of all the talks, eight startups pitched for a chance at $100,000 investment from Revolution. Flytedesk, an advertising platform that helps companies reach Millennials, have more green in their pocket today! Congrats!

Follow all the action on Tech.Co and #RiseofRest

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Frank Gruber is the cofounder, CEO and Executive Editor of Tech.Co (formerly Tech Cocktail). He is the author of the book, Startup Mixology, Tech Cocktail’s Guide to Building, Growing, and Celebrating Startup Success. He is also a startup advisor and investor to startups. Find Frank Gruber online and follow him on Twitter at @FrankGruber.

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