After a long hiatus from writing recaps, I’ a little rusty… I gotta remember to take more pictures… and write down the names of the winners. Doh! In fact, the only picture I have of the event is the one that Wissam Tabbara (founder/CEO of Clever Nudge) took when he arrived for the event. Thanks Wissam!
We were back at 500 Startups this month. This was our 3rd event at the #500 offices but the first time we were there in the middle of a batch — in fact, it’s only two weeks before demo day. What a great vibe. If you’ve been around an accelerator program when teams are preparing for demo day, you know what I mean. The teams, the products, the business models have all matured over the past couple of months and now it’s show time — they gotta be ready for their one best shot of connecting with a big room full of investors.
A highlight for me was something that most folks at the event weren’t aware of. Amir Hirsch showed up a little late and so missed the opportunity to make announcement. Turns out he had come from an investor meeting where he actually secured a physical, hand written check from an investor for his current funding round for Flybrix. Amir has been a frequent player (and money winner) at Startup Poker 2.0 — it’s always great to see one of our poker buddies do well. Congrats Amir.
By my count, we had four original Seattle founders represented; two moved their companies to SF and two were in SF on fund raising trips. There were also two founders from San Diego. That’s one of the great benefits of Startup Poker 2.0 events — it’s a terrific way to build your network in other startup cities.
As you’ll see from the one picture I have of the event, we had real poker tables this time. Real poker tables are fun, but if don’t have a full-time dealer then they are a little clumsy. I think we’ll stick with the cheesy banquet tables.
Here’s what I remember about the winners. Three out of seven of the money winners were originally from Seattle. The first place winner was a #500 founder. Third place was a repeat offender (he’s been in the money pretty much every event he plays in… so watch out.) Two of the money winners, I’m pretty sure, wouldn’t know that a strait flush beats four of kind and one of them may not have known that a flush beats a straight. So, yeah, it was a good mix of experience levels at the final table.