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Venture Atlanta Announces Heavyweight Speakers Targeting Growth Companies & Investors

UrbanGeekz CEO Talks Bootstrapping Startups at SuperNova South

Award-winning journalist turned tech entrepreneur Kunbi Tinuoye spoke at SuperNova South in Atlanta giving insight and pivotal takeaway points on bootstrapping a startup. Her words come from fearless and gutsy experience. Tinuoye is the CEO and Founder of UrbanGeekz (UG), a groundbreaking online platform that covers startups, commerce, geek gadgets, social media, scientific advancements and insight on the global technology industry steered toward African American, Latino and multicultural audiences. She started the platform after years of writing and producing content for theGrio, a top ten African American video-centric news community site. There, she realized there wasn’t enough coverage on technology. At the same time, emerging employee reports from Facebook and other major tech companies showed a lack of diversity on their teams. “It occurred to me that tech jobs are really the future and there’s a huge demographic, particularly women and Latinos, who are not represented,” she said. So, through finding an open market (for UG, there was a huge market potential), building up her brand, and securing some financing without venture capitalists or sponsorship, she was able to get UG to where it is today. The Tips She Shared for Bootstrapping First, know your place in the market. Tinuoye said that finding your market potential is the first step in figuring out if you have a viable idea or product. Companies want to know that consumers will be interested in what you have to offer. Second, focus your efforts on branding. Large companies have all had to start from humble beginnings, but now their name is synonymous on a global scale. Think Apple, Nike, or Google. That is, in large part to branding, a key aspect of many startups and entrepreneurs. “Think about your competition when you releasing your brand as well,” Tinuoye said. Having your brand or company recognized online or in the general public is important for building traction. Having a lot of traction helps with attracting bigger brands and companies to work with you. Tinuoye said that partnerships have really elevated the UG brand. Previous partners include 20th Century Fox and 500 Startups. “That’s something I’ve been very mindful of and very strategic about,” said Tinuoye. Ultimately, they want to partner because they see a strong brand with a noteworthy presence in the industry. Of course, Tinuoye is among a good number of entrepreneurs who make it look easy to churn out a formidable product with the absence of investors or without the influx of capital. But taking a jack of all trades stance and being thrifty is not going to scale a venture. The optimal goal is to get outside financing. And until your startup has that funding, Tinuoyi shared a way to work around that temporarily: entering pitch competitions. Competitions usually reward people with money to go towards their company. Additionally, as previously highlighted, it is a great way to promote yourself and build that traction she said. SuperNova South’s Seventh Year Tinuoyi joined an impressive list of industry leads, thought leaders, top-notch startup founders and CEOs to this year’s 7th annual SuperNova tech conference. “We had the best lineup of speakers yet,” said Founder and Executive Director Kashi Sehgal. “They’re diverse. They come from big companies and small disruptors. We have people from all over the country. We had VCs come out from the valley and agencies from New York.” These speakers were spread out across the conference’s ten super-charged content tracks, including Social Media, FinTech, User Experience and HealthTech. BuiltTech was a new track offered this year. This diverse and vast offering is intentional, allowing for a little something for everyone, said Sehgal. Attendees can attend one particular track for two days, but then explore other industries for the duration of the conference. “You can layer in what you’re really good at and what you’re industry is, with other things from other industries that can help augment what you’re trying to learn,” said Sehgal. With each passing year, Sehgal and her team are reaching their goal. “Our goal is to bring the most interesting, thought-provoking, future business helping content to the most amount of people,” she said. Backlinks – CEO and Founder - Emerging employee reports - Branding - 7th annual SuperNova South conference -

Venture Atlanta, one of the leading venture capital conferences in the Southeast, has announced an expansion to its 2019 programming.

This comprises sessions dedicated to connecting growth stage companies and investors with corporate development leaders from across the nation. The all-star lineup of thought leaders includes Marc Brown, Microsoft Corporate Vice President of Corporate Development, Global Head of M&A and Strategic Investments; Seksom Suriyapa, Twitter – Vice President, Corporate Development and Strategy; James Loftus, Square – Global Head of Corporate Development, among others.

The sessions will kick off with a panel conversation discussing what strategy and corporate development leaders look for in companies, trends in the market, their process for evaluating deals, and will act as a jumping-off point for discussions around growth-stage issues between entrepreneurs, investors and corporate business leaders to be had throughout the day. The growth stage track will also include networking opportunities, intimate roundtable conversations led by Venture Atlanta alumni CEOs and other local luminaries, and opportunities for 1:1 meetings.

Grammy award-winning artist, actor, and entrepreneur Ludacris made an unexpected appearance at the 2015 Venture Atlanta conference, where he used his celebrity to bolster his partnership with Roadie Inc., a mobile app-based shipping platform

“One of the things our more mature Venture Atlanta alumni companies tell us is that they wish they were better prepared for acquisition conversations and understood what to expect,” said Linnea Geiss, 2019 Venture Atlanta board member and SVP, Global Solutions, and Services at PDI Software. “Through this panel, we’ll be able to hear directly from some of the most active buyers in tech, and by leveraging this forum to further connect the growth stage community to later-stage investors and potential acquirers we’ll help our ecosystem of companies thrive as they grow.”

“From its start 12 years ago, Venture Atlanta has been quite effective in connecting earlier-stage companies with investors,” said Alex Estevez, VA’s 2019 Chairman of the Board. “This initiative helps us to become more relevant with later-stage entrepreneurs, investors, and corporations, especially those Venture Atlanta alums who have significantly grown since their early days with us.”

Venture Atlanta 2019 will take place October 16-17, 2019 at Southern Exchange in Atlanta, Georgia. Venture Atlanta is accepting applications from companies in all stages of growth through August 2nd. The organization is also looking for premier investors who are on the hunt for proven and innovative companies. Investor registration is open until October 7.





    UrbanGeekz Staff
    UrbanGeekz Staff
    UrbanGeekz is the first to market tech blog focused on covering content from a diverse and multicultural perspective. The groundbreaking videocentric multimedia platform covers technology, business, science, and startups.