Published: May 8, 2018
Event in the Idea Forge

Come celebrate Boulder's innovative startup culture with over 200 events, free and open to the public, at Boulder Startup Week May 14–18. Take a look below at some of the sessions featuring CU Boulder faculty, staff, students and alumni, including CU Regent Heidi Ganahl.

Monday, May 14

The Early Stage Venture Landscape of Colorado

3–3:50 p.m.
Canyon Theater, Library

Listen to VCs from across the state share what activity they are seeing: What investment themes or strategies are unique to their geographies. What do investors from across the state have in common? What opportunities can be found across Colorado for investors and founders alike?

CU Boulder speaker: David Camerucci, managing director of Startup Colorado at Silicon Flatirons, Colorado Law, and executive director of Startup Summer

Google, Netflix, Major League Baseball and Zayo: Architecting Their Networks

5:30–7:30 p.m.
Zayo HQ

Boulder plays a significant role in the architecture, implementation and operation of many of the world’s most sophisticated bandwidth networks; Amazon, Google, Major League Baseball, and Netflix each have teams in Boulder that are responsible for their networks. Moreover, Boulder is home to Zayo Group and Level 3 Communications, the two main providers of infrastructure that supports these networks. Join experts from these companies and discuss the vital role Boulder plays in this exciting and mission-critical ecosystem.

CU Boulder speaker: Kevin Epperson, bachelor's in business and master's in telecommunications from CU Boulder and manager of global infrastructure planning and acquisition functions at Netflix

Tuesday, May 15

What to Expect When You’re an “Expecting” Cannabis Startup

10:30–11:20 a.m.

Launching a cannabis industry startup is not easy—despite what you might read online. Learn what curveballs might be coming your way, and learn from cannabis entrepreneurs on how to hit it out of park.

CU Boulder speaker: Ron Basak-Smith, MBA in sustainability, entrepreneurship and finance from CU Boulder and co-founder and CEO of Sana Packaging

Secrets & Pitfalls to Taking Your Venture Global

11–11:50 a.m.
Galvanize (Half-A)

Should you go global? Why and when should you do this? Strategies to be successful and pitfalls to avoid. Mini case studies, as wel as insights from product and service companies, will be presented and discussed.

CU Boulder speakers: Sarabeth Berk, director of Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative; Erick Mueller, director of cross campus entrepreneurship, faculty director of entrepreneurial initiatives and adjunct professor; Cynthia Banks, instructor of strategy, entrepreneurship and operations


12–12:50 p.m.
Riverside (filling up)

Experienced investors and founders share their take on when startups are better off not raising a round from VCs and what some of the key advantages and disadvantages are to bootstrapping your company.

CU Boulder speaker: Cynthia Banks, instructor of strategy, entrepreneurship and operations; Carl Cortright, student in computer science and applied math and director of HackCU

Interactive Docs & Drinks

6:30–8:30 p.m.

Can interactive documentaries elicit empathy? Do they give viewers a greater sense of agency and control? Watch/play/interact with a variety of interactive short films on themes of social change as you explore these questions. Enjoy free drinks and conversation at this startup crawl event! 

CU Boulder speaker: Elizabeth Allen, master's student in media and public engagement

Wednesday, May 16

Did you know that Boulder offers some of the best sustainability education available in the US?

9–9:50 a.m.

Please join this exceptional panel as they share experiences and provide insight into: what sustainability is; the many options for professional positions in sustainability; what it's like to make an impact on sustainability in a Boulder startup; and what the CU Boulder campus is doing.

CU Boulder speaker: Heidi VanGenderen, chief sustainability officer

Thursday, May 17

5 Secrets to Creating a Covetable Culture

2:15–2:45 p.m.
Galvanize, Gather Cafe

Culture sets you apart. It is the difference between winning or losing and the new currency of success. Everyone has 100 percent access to information to create ventures smartly, but, this talk will discuss five secrets to creating a covetable culture that all startups aspire to have. 

CU Boulder speaker: Erick Mueller, director of cross campus entrepreneurship, faculty director of entrepreneurial initiatives and adjunct professor

The Dolphin Tank: Boulder

6–8:30 p.m.
CA Technologies Boulder

Dolphin Tanks aren’t about sharks, piranhas, dragons or competing for the best idea—they’re about channeling the expertise of the people in the room. Join this event for a friendly, feedback-driven pitch session for women entrepreneurs in the food and beverage tech space.

CU Boulder speaker: Lauren Costantini, Leeds School of Business MBA candidate and owner and founder of Tantaloupe, LLC

Friday, May 18

Calling all mentors (and wannabes): Got Ideas for CU Boulder?

10–10:50 a.m.

How would you like to support or be a mentor in the CU Boulder innovation ecosystem? Join in a discussion on how to create a robust way for the community to get involved in entrepreneurship on campus.

CU Boulder speakers: Sarabeth Berk, director of Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative; Ali LeBea Greenstein, program manager of Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative and director of New Venture Challenge

After the Exit

12–12:50 p.m.

What happens after you sell your business is almost always more challenging than most people expect. This panel will share stories from the post-exit phase and provide strategies on how to navigage it with grace and success.

CU speaker: Heidi Ganahl, CU regent and founder of Camp Bow Wow