Students: apply to pitch at the first region-wide business plan competition

October 5, 2015 | Technical.ly Philly by Juliana Reyes

Students, wanna be the next Chris Gray?

Here’s one way to polish your pitching skills. Philadelphia is hosting its first region-wide business plan competition for students.

It’s an effort to unite — and celebrate — all the student entrepreneurship activity happening around town. And there’s $15,000 up for grabs.

Apply by December 15th.

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Scholly scores again

October 1, 2015 | The Philadelphia Inquirer by Jonathon Takiff

Sometimes, it’s a good thing when it rains . . . and pours. Certainly for the gang at Scholly, the Philadelphia startup that developed an app giving students a fast and easy way to find scholarships for college.

Earlier this week, Scholly founder Christopher Gray presented and won a $100,000 investment (convertible to a stock payback)  from investor Steve Case in the “Rise of the Rest” pitch competition here.

Today Mayor Michael Nutter added to Scholly’s growth potential, announcing that the Startup PHL Angel  Fund  has likewise made a $100,000 bet on the project.  It’s the ninth investment in two years ($1,149,997 total) made to a Philly startup by the Angel Fund, a partnership of PIDC (Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation) and First Round Capital.

“The success of the Startup PHL Initiative continues to showcase Philadelphia as a top competitor in the startup community,” said John Grady, President  of PIDC. “PIDC  is committed to investing in businesses like Scholly that not only serve Philadelphia’s economy but supports priorities like education.”

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Philly entrepreneurs find home in new Center City working space

February 2nd, 2015 | Philly Metro

For Sinae Pitts, 41, her app design company is finding its feet now that it has moved to Center City.

“Philadelphia is this size where you really can be part of the community,” said Pitts, originally from New York City. “I know most of the people in the tech community and the startup community.”

Pitts’ company, AMMO, (founded in 2008 as Amphetamobile, before “Breaking Bad” became a hit, she said), used to be based out of her converted garage in Upper Darby.

Now they have two offices and two dedicated desks at Pipeline Philadelphia, a new shared workspace in Center City that opened in December.

“The day we moved in I tweeted on our account, ‘We have arrived,’ and I really feel that way,” Pitts said.  “The atmosphere here, the professionalism, the design aesthetic is something we couldn’t find anywhere else.”

Pitts said she feels proud to welcome clients to the new office space, which boasts an aesthetic design few other Philly offices can match.

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City of Philadelphia seeks Manager, Entrepreneurial Investment

The City of Philadelphia Department of Commerce is looking for a person to serve as the Manager, Entrepreneurial Investments. Best of all, this role supports Startup PHL. Deadline to apply is 5:00 PM, Monday, October 27th

Job Description:
The Manager for Entrepreneurial Investment serves as the City’s point person for promoting Philadelphia as a hub for technology companies helping start-up business owners understand the benefits of locating in Philadelphia. This position works with oversight from the Senior Director, Business Attraction & Retention and the Senior Deputy Director of Commerce. The ideal candidate will understand Philadelphia’s existing startup ecosystem as well as have experience working with or as an entrepreneur.

The Manager for Entrepreneurial Investment is responsible for a portfolio of specific projects including:

  • Manage a pipeline of new entrepreneurial business attraction/retention leads, focusing on startups and technology-based commercial clients; document progress in Project Management database.
  • Work closely with key staff to continue implementation of Startup PHL, an initiative between the City of Philadelphia and PIDC to promote Philadelphia as a tech and start-up hub.
  • Work closely with government officials and economic development partners at local/state/federal levels to secure resources/information appropriate to each business client.
  • Represent the Department of Commerce at various trade shows, speaking engagements, special events and other opportunities, as assigned.
  • Maintain working knowledge of industry trends, targeted business assistance opportunities and financing/incentive programs appropriate to business sectors served.

Typical Examples of Work:

  • Research prospects to determine suitable opportunities for the Philadelphia market.
  • Meet with clients to review ideas and concepts for business development.
  • Lead calls and appointment setting.
  • Monitor projects and assist in resolving government-generated client challenges.
  • Assist the Senior Director, Business Attraction & Retention and the Senior Deputy Director of Commerce in the execution of their responsibilities through project oversight and management
  • Draft talking points, statements and other written work product as needed.

Desired Skills: Excellent written and verbal communication skills; diplomacy and ability to facilitate problem resolution; Microsoft Office proficiency; experience in statistical and economic analysis. Graduate Degree preferred /or 5+ experience in public sector economic development or business development.

To apply, please submit a letter of interest, resume and 2-page writing sample to Clarice Brown, clarice.brown@phila.gov by 5pm, Monday October 27, 2014.

DEADLINE EXTENDED Take the Techncial.ly Philly Tech Startup Survey!

When discussing Philadelphia’s technology community, questions about what its entrepreneurial leaders feel about the region often come up. It’s time to create a benchmark understanding of our young technology business leaders.

If you’ve founded an active company or are a CEO of a startup, Technical.ly Philly, the Center City District, and Philly Startup Leaders  want to hear from you in the first ever Technical.ly Philly Tech Startup Survey. It should just take 10-12 minutes.

Take the survey here before Dec. 31.

Few quick details:

  • Technical.ly Philly will share with everyone the anonymized data, so our community can better understand ourselves. Give us your time, and get back a better view into your peers.
  • Technical.ly Philly are tying all survey responses to specific companies for data accuracy’s sake, but we won’t share any specific firm details publicly. (i.e. employee counts through time)
  • Generally speaking, Technical.ly Philly considers tech startups to have fewer than 200 employees and be no more than 3-5 years of age doing work on digital hardware, scalable software or related services. However, this is largely a self-selecting group, and so if you feel you fit in this category, please take this survey.
  • Find a more detailed description of technology companies on the survey page.

Drexel, Science Center unveil coworking space, DreamIt Ventures HQ

DreamIt Ventures is ramping up efforts to support its graduating companies by offering its Philadelphia startups both office space and capital, as DreamIt is currently raising a $30 million fund to invest in startups that have completed its program.

December 11, 2013 | Technical.ly Philly by Juliana Reyes

This spring, 3401 Market Street will launch as a tech startup hub.

DreamIt Ventures will establish its headquarters on the second and third floor of the building, a 17,500 square foot space that’s being developed by the University City Science Center and Drexel University for about $1 million, the organizations announced this afternoon.

DreamIt aims to host all of its Philadelphia accelerator programs for early-stage startups, as well as offer office space for its graduating companies. The space will also be open to non-DreamIt startups. On the ground floor  of the building is the ExCITe Center, Drexel’s cross-disciplinary music and tech lab.

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Penn’s Graduate School of Education launches $2.1M edtech incubator

September 24, 2013 | Technically Philly by Juliana Reyes

This fall, five startups will participate in Penn‘s Graduate School of Education (GSE) six-month edtech incubator, according to a release.

The $2.1 million effort, first announced in May, is called the Education Design Studio, Inc. Participating companies do not have to move to Philadelphia, like they would with other programs like DreamIt Ventures and GoodCompany Group. Rather, the five companies will meet once a month in a different city for training and workshops.

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