2019 Bend Venture Conference Winners

2019 winners with checks outside of Liberty Theater

EDCO ANNOUNCES THE WINNERS OF THE 16TH ANNUAL BEND VENTURE CONFERENCE

Six Companies Presented with a Total of $488,000 in Investments & Cash Awards

BEND, OR – October 18, 2019Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO) hosted the 16th  Annual Bend Venture Conference (BVC) to a sold-out crowd at the Tower Theatre in Downtown Bend. This August, nearly 100 companies from across the U.S. and Canada applied to the conference in hopes of making it to the Tower Theatre stage. Over the past two days, 14 finalists presented their ideas to nearly 600 attendees.

This year marks the largest fund yet for the BVC, LLC, setting a funding record for the conference.

This year’s award breakdown is as follows:

Growth Stage Competition

The Growth Stage Competition, which included companies that have a proven concept and initial revenues, had two different winners.

  • Winners of BVC, LLC, Investment Awards*:
    • Observa (Seattle, WA) – An AI platform bringing ecommerce-style analytics to brick-and-mortar retail, was awarded $250,000.
    • Belmont (Portland, OR) – Providing break rooms with coffee, simplified draft beverages and fully-managed pantry service using proprietary technology, was awarded $100,000.

*The investment arm of the conference, BVC, LLC, awarded the Growth Stage investments following considerable due diligence of each of the five presenting finalists. This investment included $75,000 from Business Oregon and $10,000 from Oregon Community Foundation. Investments and follow on deals are still being finalized.

Impact Competition

The Impact Competition, which included for-profit companies with an integrated social or environmental mission, had one winner, awarded by the BVC Impact LLC. This is the fifth award given by the Impact LLC in the past four years.

  • Winner of the BVC Impact LLC, Investment Award*:
    • Riff Cold Brewed (Bend, OR) – Upcycling coffee byproduct into an all-natural energy drink, was awarded $85,000.

*The impact investment arm of the conference awarded an investment following considerable due diligence of each of the four presenting finalists. This investment included $25,000 from Business Oregon and $10,000 from Oregon Community Foundation. Investments are still being finalized.

Early Stage Competition

The Early Stage Competition included companies that are pre-revenue (or very early) and are in the process of testing their product in the market. The three winning Early Stage companies are:

  • Winners of the Portland Seed Fund Early Stage Competition:
    • FleetNurse Inc. (Eugene, OR) – An app-based on-demand staffing service for healthcare facility supervisors, was awarded $25,000.
    • Steamchain Corp. (Salem, OR) – A blockchain company using smart contracts to reduce high currency conversion costs and fluctuation risk in shipping and logistics, was awarded $25,000.
  • Winner of the Keiretsu Forum Audience Award (awarded at EDCO’s September PubTalk):
    • TerrAmor (Corvallis, OR) – A low-cost, easy to deploy, organic-certified solution for soft fruit growers to address the spotted wing drosophila problem, won a $3,000 cash award.

“This year we’ve raised the most money for the BVC LLCs in the history of the conference,” said Brian Vierra, EDCO’s Venture Catalyst. “This continues to show the strong local investor support for both the Conference and our current startup ecosystem. BVC continues to connect Central Oregon entrepreneurs to a broader, national audience.”

About Bend Venture Conference (BVC)
Now in its 16th year, BVC, hosted by EDCO, is one of the largest angel conferences in the country. Over the past five years, more than $10 million has been invested in 38 companies as a result of the conference. This year, nearly 600 entrepreneurs, investors, and business leaders attended the multi-day conference on October 17-18, in Bend, Oregon. bendvc.com

About Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO)
EDCO is a non-profit corporation supported by private and public members and stakeholders, whose mission is to create middle-class jobs in Central Oregon by recruiting new employers to move to the region; helping entrepreneurs start new, scalable businesses; and working with businesses that are already here to grow their operations. edcoinfo.com

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2019 BVC Growth Stage and Impact Finalists Announced

EDCO ANNOUNCES THE FINALISTS IN THE GROWTH AND IMPACT CATEGORIES ADVANCING TO THE BEND VENTURE CONFERENCE, OCTOBER 17-18

BEND, OR – October 4, 2019 – Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO) announced the Semi-Finalists advancing in the Growth Stage and Impact Categories for the 16th Annual Bend Venture Conference (BVC) on Thursday, October 17 – Friday, October 18, 2019.

In just two weeks, these companies will travel from across the West to present on the Tower Theatre stage. Last year, companies in the Growth Stage category won prizes ranging from $100,000 to $500,000, while the Impact Category winner walked away with $100,000.

In alphabetical order, the five Growth Stage finalists are:

  1. Belmont (Portland, OR) – Providing break rooms with coffee, simplified draft beverages and fully-managed pantry service using proprietary technology.
  2. Candid Wholesale (Portland, OR) – A suite of enterprise-grade tools for SME wholesalers, providing a SaaS platform where buyers can make orders and manage relationships.
  3. Observa (Seattle, WA) – An AI platform bringing ecommerce-style analytics to brick-and-mortar retail.
  4. SendSmart (Portland, OR) – Automates web lead follow up on multiple communication channels, connecting salespeople with leads once they’ve responded.
  5. ThingLogix (Belmont, CA) – Provides companies with the expertise and tools to design, build, deploy, and manage serverless and IoT Applications on the cloud.

In alphabetical order, the four Impact Stage finalists are:

  1. Beta Hatch (Seattle, WA) – Farming for the future by industrializing insects.
  2. Meli Wraps (Bend, OR) – Creators of reusable beeswax wraps for food storage.
  3. Riff Cold Brewed (Bend, OR) – Upcycling coffee byproduct into an all-natural energy drink.
  4. Sironix Renewables (Seattle, WA) – Maker of high-performance, eco-friendly ingredients for cleaning products.

“These companies represent finalists from close to 100 applications received this year,” said Brian Vierra, EDCO’s Venture Catalyst. “The steady progression in maturity of both tracks continues with a broad range of geographies and ideas being represented. These top companies also show how the tracks have evolved to look more like true Venture-style investments, with revenues ranging from $500k to close to $4 million.”

Hosted by Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO), this year’s BVC will once again feature three competition categories: Growth Stage, Early Stage and Impact, bringing together over 600 entrepreneurs, investors and business leaders to Bend, Oregon.

Ticket Sales
Tickets to the 16th Annual Bend Venture Conference are on sale now and are available here.

About Bend Venture Conference (BVC)
Now in its 16th year, BVC, hosted by EDCO, is one of the largest angel conferences in the country. Over the past five years, more than $10 million has been invested in 38 companies as a result of the conference. This year, over 600 entrepreneurs, investors, and business leaders are expected to attend the multi-day conference on October 17-18, in Bend, Oregon. bendvc.com

About Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO)
EDCO is a non-profit corporation supported by private and public members and stakeholders, whose mission is to create middle-class jobs in Central Oregon by recruiting new employers to move to the region; helping entrepreneurs start new, scalable businesses; and working with businesses that are already here to grow their operations. edcoinfo.com

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2019 BVC Early Stage Finalists Announced

ANNOUNCING THE FIVE EARLY STAGE FINALISTS TO PRESENT AT THE 16TH ANNUAL BEND VENTURE CONFERENCE OCTOBER 17-18
Finalists Chosen During Last Night’s Central Oregon PubTalk

BEND, Ore. – September 27, 2019 – Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO) announces the Top Five Early Stage Finalists advancing to the Bend Venture Conference (BVC) on Thursday, October 17 – Friday, October 18, 2019. These companies will present on the historic Tower Theatre stage in Downtown Bend, competing for a possible investment of $25,000 from Portland Seed Fund.

The Early Stage competition received 42 company applications from six states. It includes companies that have a great idea and are close to “proof of concept.” They are pre-revenue (or very early) and are in the process of testing their product in the market. The competition will take place on the morning of Friday, October 18th.

During last night’s Central Oregon PubTalk, TerrAmor won the Audience Vote and received a $3,000 cash award, courtesy of Keiretsu Forum.

In alphabetical order, the five Early Stage finalists presenting at the Bend Venture Conference are:

  1. FleetNurse Inc. (Eugene, OR) – An app-based on-demand staffing service for healthcare facility supervisors.
  2. Lisi Global, Inc. (Richland, WA) – Environmentally safe, patented electronics technology that eradicates soil pests and pathogens.
  3. Speak Technologies (Portland, OR) – A time-saving productivity tool using AI to follow-up on meetings by automatically capturing notes, key decisions and action items.
  4. Steamchain Corp (Salem, OR) – Steamchain is a Financial Technology company that has created a platform using smart contracts, blockchain technology and proprietary processes to simplify international B2B payments.
  5. TerrAmor (Corvallis, OR) – A low-cost, easy to deploy, organic-certified solution for soft fruit growers to address the spotted wing drosophila problem.

Tickets to the 16th Annual Bend Venture Conference are on sale now and are available here.

About Bend Venture Conference (BVC)
Now in its 16th year, BVC, hosted by EDCO, is one of the largest angel conferences in the country. Over the past five years, more than $10 million has been invested in 38 companies as a result of the conference. This year, over 600 entrepreneurs, investors, and business leaders are expected to attend the multi-day conference on October 17-18, in Bend, Oregon. bendvc.com

About Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO)
EDCO is a non-profit corporation supported by private and public members and stakeholders, whose mission is to create middle-class jobs in Central Oregon by recruiting new employers to move to the region; helping entrepreneurs start new, scalable businesses; and working with businesses that are already here to grow their operations. edcoinfo.com

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2019 BVC Semi-Finalists for Early Stage

EDCO ANNOUNCES THE BVC EARLY STAGE SEMI-FINALISTS
Ten companies to present at the largest PubTalk of the year September 26th;
Competing for a $3,000 cash award and a spot on BVC Stage

BEND, Ore. – September 17, 2019 – Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO) announced the 10 semi-finalist companies advancing in the Early Stage competition for the 16th Annual Bend Venture Conference (BVC) on Thursday, October 17 – Friday, October 18, 2019. This group of companies is one step closer to presenting on the historic Tower Theatre stage in Downtown Bend, competing for an investment of $25,000 from Portland Seed Fund.

These Early Stage semi-finalists will pitch against each other at the September 26th PubTalk with five companies advancing to the Bend Venture Conference. In addition to advancing to the BVC, an audience vote will determine one Early Stage company to receive a $3,000 cash award, courtesy of Keiretsu Forum. Tickets for PubTalk are on sale now and available here.

In alphabetical order, the 10 BVC Early Stage semi-finalists that will compete at the September 26th PubTalk are:

  1. Analog Biometric Technologies (Portland, OR) – A firearm lockbox preventing children from accessing firearms using the length of fingers to unlock.
  2. eCode.me (Bend, OR) – A product recommendation platform that recommends products based on a unique sensory profile.
  3. FleetNurse Inc. (Eugene, OR) – An app-based on-demand staffing service for healthcare facility supervisors.
  4. Honistly (Portland, OR) – Creators of financial instruments that ease anxiety through alternatives to predatory lending and the comfort of predictable expenses via warranties.
  5. Lisi Global, Inc. (Richland, WA) – Environmentally safe, patented electronics technology that eradicates soil pests and pathogens.
  6. Referit Wellness, Inc. (Bend, OR) – An app that helps doctors grow their practices by incentivizing patients to share their favorite doctors.
  7. Shift (Bend, OR) – VR enhanced online training to help educators recognize and mitigate implicit bias in the classroom.
  8. Speak Technologies (Portland, OR) – A time-saving productivity tool using AI to follow-up on meetings by automatically capturing notes, key decisions and action items.
  9. Steamchain Corp (Salem, OR) – A blockchain company using smart contracts to reduce high currency conversion costs and fluctuation risk in shipping and logistics.
  10. TerrAmor (Corvallis, OR) – A low-cost, easy to deploy, organic-certified solution for soft fruit growers to address the spotted wing drosophila problem.

 

During PubTalk, an audience vote, along with a panel of experts, will determine the five companies that advance to BVC October 17-18. With the largest crowd of the year, the action will be live-streamed throughout McMenamins. Don’t wait to secure your seats – tickets are going fast and this event will sell out.

With the largest crowd of the year, the action will be live-streamed throughout McMenamins. Don’t wait to secure your seats – tickets are going fast and this event will sell out.

PubTalk Agenda
5:00 pm to 5:45 pm Networking, drinks & appetizers
5:45 pm to 8:00 pm Early Stage Company Pitches, Audience Vote, Winner Announcement

PubTalk Cost and Registration
$27 EDCO & OEN Members (Become a member here.)
$37 Non-Members
Cost includes appetizers and a free beverage (choice of beer, wine, or soda)

Ticket Sales
Tickets to the September 26th PubTalk are on sale now and available here.
Tickets to the 16th Annual Bend Venture Conference are on sale now and are available here.

BVC Title Sponsors


PubTalk Title Sponsors

About Bend Venture Conference (BVC)
Now in its 16th year, BVC, hosted by EDCO, is one of the largest angel conferences in the country. Over the past five years, more than $10 million has been invested in 38 companies as a result of the conference. This year, over 600 entrepreneurs, investors, and business leaders are expected to attend the multi-day conference on October 17-18, in Bend, Oregon. bendvc.com

About Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO)
EDCO is a non-profit corporation supported by private and public members and stakeholders, whose mission is to create middle-class jobs in Central Oregon by recruiting new employers to move to the region; helping entrepreneurs start new, scalable businesses; and working with businesses that are already here to grow their operations. edcoinfo.com

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2019 BVC Semi-Finalists for Growth Stage and Impact

EDCO ANNOUNCES THE SEMI-FINALISTS IN THE GROWTH STAGE AND IMPACT CATEGORIES; ONE STEP CLOSER TO PRESENTING AT THE 2019 BEND VENTURE CONFERENCE


BEND, OR – September 12, 2019 –
Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO) announced the Semi-Finalists advancing in the Growth Stage and Impact Categories for the 16th Annual Bend Venture Conference (BVC) on Thursday, October 17 – Friday, October 18, 2019.

The below semi-finalists have to make it through one more cut before presenting on the historic Tower Theatre stage in Downtown Bend. Last year, companies in the Growth Stage Category won prizes ranging from $100,000 to $500,000, while the Impact Category winner walked away with $100,000. Semi-Finalists in the Early Stage competition will be announced early next week.

In alphabetical order, the 10 Growth Stage semi-finalists are:

  1. Belmont (Portland, OR.) – Providing break rooms with coffee, simplified draft beverages and fully-managed pantry service using proprietary technology.
  2. Broken Top Candle Company (Bend, OR) – Create hand-poured sustainable and conscious products using renewable and recyclable materials.
  3. Candid Wholesale (Portland, OR) – A suite of enterprise-grade tools for SME wholesalers, providing a SaaS platform where buyers can make orders and manage relationships.
  4. ClearOPS, Inc. (New York, NY) – Provides vendor response management for data privacy and security operations.
  5. New Leaf Precision Ag (Portland, OR) – A standardized, data-driven framework that helps growers grow more, waste less and maintain consistency.
  6. Observa (Seattle, WA) – An AI platform bringing ecommerce-style analytics to brick-and-mortar retail.
  7. Rupie (Bend, OR) – An AI-driven, community-focused talent-gig matching platform for building video games.
  8. SendSmart (Portland, OR) – Automates web lead follow up on multiple communication channels, connecting salespeople with leads once they’ve responded.
  9. ThingLogix (Belmont, CA) – Provides companies with the expertise and tools to design, build, deploy, and manage serverless and IoT Applications on the cloud.
  10. Walker Tracker (Portland, OR) – A SaaS platform that partners with companies and organizations to build wellness into their culture and make healthy behaviors fun and accessible.

In alphabetical order, the six Impact Stage semi-finalists are:

  1. Beta Hatch (Seattle, WA) – Farming for the future by industrializing insects.
  2. BrainChild Technologies (Bend, OR) – Accessible hearing tests for infants.
  3. Meli Wraps (Bend, OR) – Creators of reusable beeswax wraps for food storage.
  4. Riff Cold Brewed (Bend, OR) – Upcycling coffee byproduct into an all-natural energy drink.
  5. Sana Packaging (Denver, CO) – Designer and developer of cannabis packaging using sustainable materials.
  6. Sironix Renewables (Seattle, WA) – Maker of high-performance, eco-friendly ingredients for cleaning products.

Hosted by Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO), this year’s BVC will once again feature three competition categories: Growth Stage, Early Stage and Impact, bringing together over 600 entrepreneurs, investors and business leaders to Bend, Oregon.

Ticket Sales
Tickets to the 16th Annual Bend Venture Conference are on sale now and are available here.

About Bend Venture Conference (BVC)
Now in its 16th year, BVC, hosted by EDCO, is one of the largest angel conferences in the country. Over the past five years, more than $10 million has been invested in 38 companies as a result of the conference. This year, over 600 entrepreneurs, investors, and business leaders are expected to attend the multi-day conference on October 17-18, in Bend, Oregon. bendvc.com

About Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO)
EDCO is a non-profit corporation supported by private and public members and stakeholders, whose mission is to create middle-class jobs in Central Oregon by recruiting new employers to move to the region; helping entrepreneurs start new, scalable businesses; and working with businesses that are already here to grow their operations. edcoinfo.com

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2019 Companies Vying to Present on the BVC Stage

EDCO ANNOUNCES THE FIRST ROUND OF COMPANIES IN THE GROWTH, EARLY AND IMPACT CATEGORIES ADVANCING TO THE NEXT STAGE OF THE 2019 BEND VENTURE CONFERENCE

BEND, OR – September 6, 2019 – Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO) announced the first round of companies to advance in the Growth, Impact and Early Stage Categories for the 16th Annual Bend Venture Conference (BVC) to be held Thursday, October 17 – Friday, October 18, 2019.

The below companies are one step closer to presenting on the historic Tower Theatre stage in Downtown Bend. Last year, companies in the Growth Stage category won prizes ranging from $100,000 to $500,000, while the Impact Category winner walked away with $100,000. The Early Stage winner could walk away with a $25,000 investment, courtesy of Portland Seed Fund.

In alphabetical order, the 20 Growth Stage companies competing to make it through to the next round of cuts are:

  1. Belmont (Portland, OR.)
  2. Broken Top Candle Company (Bend, OR)
  3. Cadee Distillery Inc (Seattle, WA)
  4. Candid Wholesale (Portland, OR)
  5. Célage Bioscience, Inc. (Los Angeles, CA)
  6. ClearOPS, Inc. (New York, NY)
  7. Curadite (Portland, OR)
  8. DataDx (Lake Oswego, OR)
  9. Joule Case (Seattle, WA)
  10. Litesprite (Bellevue, WA)
  11. Loopie (Seattle, WA)
  12. New Leaf Precision Ag (Portland, OR)
  13. Observa (Seattle, WA)
  14. Quantek Systems (Bend, OR)
  15. Rupie (Bend, OR)
  16. SendSmart (Portland, OR)
  17. ThingLogix (Belmont, CA)
  18. TrovaTrip (Portland, OR)
  19. Twofold (Portland, OR)
  20. Walker Tracker (Portland, OR)

 

In alphabetical order, the 14 Impact Stage companies competing to make it through to the next round of cuts are:

  1. Beta Hatch (Seattle, WA)
  2. BrainChild Technologies (Bend, OR)
  3. Chargeway (Portland, OR)
  4. De Las Mías (Portland, OR)
  5. DRIMS, Inc. (Missoula, MT)
  6. Goodwell Co. (Portland, OR)
  7. Hempress Hygienics (Corvallis, OR)
  8. MaskIT (Ashland, OR)
  9. Meli Wraps (Bend, OR)
  10. Riff Cold Brewed (Bend, OR)
  11. Sana Packaging (Denver, CO)
  12. Sironix Renewables (Seattle, WA)
  13. Terra Frma (Bend, OR)
  14. ThisFish (Vancouver, BC, Canada)

 

In alphabetical order, the 18 Early Stage companies competing to make it through to the next round of cuts are:

  1. Analog Biometric Technologies (Portland, OR)
  2. Automaton (Seattle, WA)
  3. Barcast (Portland, OR)
  4. eCode.me (Bend, OR)
  5. FleetNurse Inc. (Eugene, OR)
  6. Hair Hustlers (Portland, OR)
  7. Honistly (Portland, OR)
  8. Lisi Global, Inc. (Richland, WA)
  9. Planet Nine (Portland, OR)
  10. qChange (Vancouver, WA)
  11. Referit Wellness, Inc. (Bend, OR)
  12. Rente (Redding, CA)
  13. Shift (Bend, OR)
  14. Speak Technologies (Portland, OR)
  15. Steamchain Corp (Salem, OR)
  16. TerrAmor (Corvallis, OR)
  17. Wisedoc, Inc. (Corvallis, OR)
  18. XS Spaces (Portland, OR)

Hosted by Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO), this year’s BVC will once again feature three competition categories: Growth Stage, Early Stage and Impact, bringing together over 600 entrepreneurs, investors and business leaders to Bend, Oregon.

Ticket Sales
Tickets to the 16th Annual Bend Venture Conference are on sale now and are available here.

About Bend Venture Conference (BVC)
Now in its 16th year, BVC, hosted by EDCO, is one of the largest angel conferences in the country. Over the past five years, more than $10 million has been invested in 38 companies as a result of the conference. This year, over 600 entrepreneurs, investors, and business leaders are expected to attend the multi-day conference on October 17-18, in Bend, Oregon. bendvc.com

About Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO)
EDCO is a non-profit corporation supported by private and public members and stakeholders, whose mission is to create middle-class jobs in Central Oregon by recruiting new employers to move to the region; helping entrepreneurs start new, scalable businesses; and working with businesses that are already here to grow their operations. edcoinfo.com

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THE BEND VENTURE CONFERENCE RETURNS OCTOBER 17-18, 2019

THE BEND VENTURE CONFERENCE RETURNS OCTOBER 17-18

CONFERENCE TICKETS ON SALE NOW
COMPANY APPLICATIONS OPEN NOW THRU AUGUST 15TH

BEND, OR (July 18, 2019) – Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO) will again host the annual two-day Bend Venture Conference (BVC) on Thursday, October 17 – Friday, October 18, 2019, at the iconic Tower Theatre in downtown Bend. Tickets to the 16th Annual BVC are available here.

Last year, 600 attendees, 50 prominent investors, and over 70 companies joined us for a celebration of entrepreneurship and innovation. Investments, awards, and prizes of approximately $2.35 million were given to multiple winners at the 2018 conference.

“In 2018, we received a record number of company applications as far south as Arizona and as far east as New York. All three competition categories are open to companies located anywhere in the U.S.,” said Brian Vierra, EDCO’s Venture Catalyst. “This year, we will continue that expansion, bringing more promising companies to Central Oregon to compete for the big checks.”

Companies in the Impact Competition have historically competed for investments ranging from $50,000-$100,000. This year’s Early Stage Competition has received a commitment from Portland Seed Fund to invest at least $25,000 into the winning company. Growth Stage Competition finalists could collect an investment of $250,000 or more. The 2019 BVC will feature impressive speakers from across the country representing angel investors, venture capitalists and entrepreneurs, to be announced at a later date.

APPLY

This year’s conference will feature three competition categories: Growth Stage, Early Stage, and Impact. The application period is open now through Thursday, August 15th and companies across the United States are invited to apply.

  • Growth Stage Competition: This category is open to companies that have a proven concept, have generated initial revenues and are prepared to scale quickly with investment. To apply, click here.
  • Early Stage Competition: This category is open to companies that have a great idea and are close to “proof of concept.” They are pre-revenue (or very early-revenue) and are in the process of testing their product in the market. To apply, click here.
  • Impact Competition: This category is open to for-profit companies, whose business models are integrated with a mission to have a significant and measurable social or environmental impact. Applicants should be aiming to generate long-term enterprise value and attractive returns on capital. To apply, click here.

Jason Moyer, Fund Manager for the 2019 BVC, LLC said, “BVC has come a long way. We’re now syndicating with professional funds to invest meaningful sums in many of the region’s most promising ventures. Multiple exits and up-rounds suggest that our selection process is on the right track.”

BVC title sponsors, US Bank, Jones and Roth

About Bend Venture Conference (BVC)

Now in its 16th year, BVC, hosted by EDCO, is one of the largest angel conferences in the country. Over the past five years, more than $10 million has been invested in 38 companies as a result of the conference. This year, over 600 entrepreneurs, investors, and business leaders are expected to attend the multi-day conference on October 17-18, in Bend, Oregon. https://bendvc.edcoinfo.com/

About Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO)

EDCO is a non-profit corporation supported by private and public members and stakeholders, whose mission is to create middle-class jobs in Central Oregon by recruiting new employers to move to the region; helping entrepreneurs start new, scalable businesses; and working with businesses that are already here to grow their operations. www.edcoinfo.com

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BladeRunner Energy Making a Splash In Renewable Energy

BLADERUNNER ENERGY’S FISH FRIENDLY POWER GENERATOR MAKING A SPLASH IN RENEWABLE ENERGY
Bend Venture Conference Early Stage Winner Making Headlines

Bend, Ore. – December 11, 2018 – In 2017, BladeRunner Energy took home the Early Stage Award of $17,500 at the Bend Venture Conference (BVC). Since then, they have gone on to improve their technology, win yet another prestigious award at the 2018 Cascadia CleanTech Accelerator, and present on the Central Oregon PubTalk stage. Their green technology is quickly moving upstream among the sustainable energy community.

BladeRunner Energy is an eco-friendly micro-hydro solution for sustainable power generation without the use of a dam. Their flexible technology mimicks the natural flow of water, creating enough power to fuel electricity for an entire household, while minimizing environmental impact. The company is working to reduce costs by shrinking the size of the system down so that one person can easily install and store the device for an “energy when you need it” system.

Winning the BVC Early Stage Award provided Co-founder and CTO Moriel Arango the opportunity to focus fulltime on rapidly developing the technology for the company, as well as spreading the word of their product throughout the region. This outreach has permitted them to engage in conversations with local irrigation districts and stakeholders in the CleanTech ecosystem. Today, the team continues to work on the R&D of the technology, which is funded by a Phase II SBIR grant from the National Science Foundation. They are working towards receiving additional funding for their first pilot demonstration aiming to use a stretch of irrigation in the Central Oregon area.

With BVC now in the rearview mirror, Moriel returned to the Central Oregon PubTalk stage earlier in November for an update. He informed the Central Oregon community that they had the confidence to enter the 2018 Cascadia CleanTech Accelerator in Portland, due to their success at BVC the previous year. The company took home the Standout Company Award along with a $2,000 cash prize and $2,500 of in-kind legal services. This success in the accelerator program is an additional boost to their motivation and further drives the point that Oregon is a center of innovation around CleanTech.

The future of any startup can be uncertain, but BladeRunner Energy is working hard to meet key milestones. From the Bend Venture Conference to the Cascadia CleanTech Accelerator, each bit of success gets them one step closer to completing their mission of bringing hydropower to the people.

Find more information at www.bladerunnerenergy.com.

About Bend Venture Conference (BVC)
Now in its 15th year, BVC, hosted by EDCO, is one of the largest angel conferences in the country. Over the past five years, nearly $10 million has been invested in 41 companies as a result of the conference. This year, 600 entrepreneurs, investors, and business leaders attended the multi-day conference in Bend, Oregon. BVC will return in 2019 on October 17 &18. For more information, visit www.bendvc.com.

About Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO)

EDCO is a non-profit corporation supported by private and public members and stakeholders, whose mission is to create middle-class jobs in Central Oregon by: recruiting new employers to move to the region; helping entrepreneurs start new, scalable businesses; and working with businesses that are already here to grow their operations. For more information, visit www.edcoinfo.com.

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OVER $1.8 MILLION IN FUNDING AWARDED AT THE 2018 BEND VENTURE CONFERENCE

2018 Bend Venture Conference

OVER $1.8 MILLION IN FUNDING AWARDED AT THE 2018 BEND VENTURE CONFERENCE, BRINGING THE FIVE YEAR TOTAL TO NEARLY $10 MILLION

Seven Companies across Three Competition Categories Take Home Investments and Cash Prizes

BEND, OR – October 19, 2018 – Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO) hosted the 15th Annual Bend Venture Conference (BVC) to a sold-out crowd at the Tower Theatre in Downtown Bend. Over the past two days, 14 companies presented their ideas to 600 attendees in hopes of gaining investments from prominent funds. Of those 14 finalists, half of them walked away with funding totaling $1,807,500 in both investments and cash prizes. Side investment deals are still being finalized.

Over the past five years, the Bend Venture Conference has awarded upwards of $9.6 million in funding to 41 companies, completely reinventing Oregon’s angel and venture landscape. This year’s award breakdown is as follows:

Growth Stage Competition

The Growth Stage competition, which included companies that have a proven concept and initial revenues, had four different winners.

  • Winners of BVC, LLC, Investment Awards*:
    • Talkoot, Inc. (Hood River, Ore.) – An intuitive, cloud-based tool that helps teams create high volumes of product copy, was awarded an investment of $135,000+.
    • CommLoan, Inc. (Scottsdale, Ariz.) – A commercial real estate finance marketplace reducing the cost and time it takes to secure commercial real estate loans, was awarded an investment of $100,000.
  • Winners of Seven Peaks Ventures Investment Awards:
    • Talkoot was awarded an additional investment of $500,000.
    • Caligoo (Bend, Ore.) – A mobile customer journey software platform providing predictive and personalized experiences that sense, learn, reason, and react in real-time to target customers and reach applications goals, was awarded and investment of $250,000.
  • Winners of Cascade Angels Fund Investment Awards:
    • Stabilitas (Seattle, Wash.) – An AI engine designed for security teams that allows them to do the work of 1,000 human analysts in real-time, was awarded an investment of $200,000.
    • Talkoot was awarded an additional investment of $200,000.
  • Winner of an Elevate Capital Investment Award:
    • Talkoot received an additional $300,000.

*The investment arm of the conference, BVC, LLC, awarded the Growth Stage investments following considerable due diligence of each of the five presenting finalists. This investment included $25,000 from Oregon Growth Account and $10,000 from Oregon Community Foundation. Investments are still being finalized, with the final amounts to be announced in the coming months.

Impact Competition

The Impact Competition, which included for-profit companies with an integrated social or environmental mission, had one winner awarded by the BVC Impact LLC. This is the fourth award given by the Impact LLC in the past three years.

  • Winner of the BVC Impact LLC, Investment Award*:
    • OCO Corporation (Vida, Ore.) – Converts carbon dioxide generated by industrial and fossil fuel burning power plants into a value-added platform chemical, formic acid, was awarded an investment of $100,000.

*The impact investment arm of the conference awarded an investment following considerable due diligence of each of the four presenting finalists. This investment included $25,000 from Oregon Growth Account and $10,000 from Oregon Community Foundation. Investments are still being finalized, with the final amount to be announced in the coming months.

Early Stage Competition

  •  Winner of the Portland Seed Fund Early Stage Competition:
    • Plover, Inc. (Portland, Ore.), a carwash machine that utilizes computer vision and modern robotics using only steam and water, was awarded an investment of $20,000.
  • Winner of the PrideStaff Early Stage Audience Award:
    • LuDela (Bend, Ore.), bringing smart technology to scented candles, was awarded a cash grant of $2,500 after an audience vote.


Talkoot was the big winner for 2018, walking away with $1.135 million in funding.

“The growth of this conference is really exciting to watch and rewarding to be a part of. It has grown in more ways than just bigger capital deployment. As a result, we’ve seen companies exposed to Bend from across the country, and attendees from across the globe,” said Brian Vierra, EDCO’s Venture Catalyst. “And it wouldn’t be possible without our partners and Oregon-based funding entities including Cascade Angels, Seven Peaks Ventures, Elevate Capital, and Portland Seed Fund. This is truly an exciting time to be in Central Oregon.”

About Bend Venture Conference (BVC)
Now in its 15th year, BVC, hosted by EDCO, is one of the largest angel conferences in the country. Over the past five years, nearly $10 million has been invested in 41 companies as a result of the conference. This year, 600 entrepreneurs, investors, and business leaders attended the multi-day conference in Bend, Oregon. BVC will return in 2019 on October 17 &18. For more information, visit www.bendvc.com.

About Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO)
EDCO is a non-profit corporation supported by private and public members and stakeholders, whose mission is to create middle-class jobs in Central Oregon by: recruiting new employers to move to the region; helping entrepreneurs start new, scalable businesses; and working with businesses that are already here to grow their operations. For more information, visit www.edcoinfo.com.

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2018 BVC Growth & Impact Finalists Announced

EDCO ANNOUNCE FINALISTS FOR THE GROWTH STAGE AND IMPACT CATEGORIES
ADVANCING TO THE BEND VENTURE CONFERENCE, OCTOBER 18 & 19

BEND, Ore. – October 4, 2018 – Today, Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO) announced the Growth Stage and Impact companies advancing to the 15th Annual Bend Venture Conference (BVC) on Thursday, October 18 – Friday, October 19, 2018.

In just two weeks, these companies will travel from across the United States to present on the Tower Theatre stage. Last year, Growth Stage companies won prizes ranging from $25,000 – $485,000, while the Impact Category received over $110,000 in investment.

In alphabetical order, the 5 Growth Stage finalists are:

  1. Caligoo (Bend, Ore.) – A mobile customer journey software platform providing predictive and personalized experiences that sense, learn, reason, and react in real-time to target customers and reach applications goals.
  2. CommLoan, Inc. (Scottsdale, Ariz.) – A commercial real estate finance marketplace reducing the cost and time it takes to secure a commercial real estate loan.
  3. Stabilitas (Seattle, Wash.) – An AI engine designed for security teams that allows us to do the work of 1,000 human analysts in real-time.
  4. Talkoot, Inc. (Hood River, Ore.) – An intuitive, cloud-based tool that helps teams create high volumes of product copy.
  5. TransformativeMed (Seattle, Wash.) – Develops SaaS apps enabling physicians and nurses to deliver better patient care by making hospital medical records intuitive and easy to use.

In alphabetical order, the 4 Impact Stage finalists are:

  1. Asarasi, Inc. (Katonah, N.Y.) – Certified USDA organic plant-based water sourced from maple trees without compromising the groundwater table.
  2. Dweller, Inc. (Portland, Ore.) – Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) built using modular construction and an innovative ownership structure to reduce the cost of housing in dense cities.
  3. OCO Corporation (Vida, Ore.) – Converts carbon dioxide generated by industrial and fossil fuel burning power plants into a value-added platform chemical, formic acid.
  4. ROTBLOC (Bend, Ore.) – A sustainable post wrap for wood trellis systems and ranch fencing that lengthens post life while preventing ground line rot.

“This is the most geographically dispersed group of finalists we’ve ever had, showcasing the notoriety the Bend Venture Conference has gained over the past 15 years,” noted Brian Vierra, EDCO’s Venture Catalyst.

Hosted by Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO), this year’s BVC will once again feature three competition categories: Growth Stage, Early Stage and Impact. The BVC finalists presenting at the conference will be announced in early October.

Ticket Sales
Tickets to the 15th Annual Bend Venture Conference are on sale now and are available here.

About Bend Venture Conference (BVC)
Now in its 15th year, BVC, hosted by EDCO, is one of the largest angel conferences in the country. Over the past four years, more than $7.8 million has been invested in 34 companies as a result of the conference. This year, over 600 entrepreneurs, investors, and business leaders are expected to attend the multi-day conference on October 18-19, in Bend, Oregon. For more information, visit www.bendvc.com.

About Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO)
EDCO is a non-profit corporation supported by private and public members and stakeholders, whose mission is to create middle-class jobs in Central Oregon by: recruiting new employers to move to the region; helping entrepreneurs start new, scalable businesses; and working with businesses that are already here to grow their operations. For more information, visit www.edcoinfo.com.


2018 Title Sponsors:

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