Top Ten BVC Early Stage Semi-Finalists Just Announced, To Present at PubTalk Sept. 28


BEND, OR (September 13, 2017)Economic Development for Central Oregon‘s (EDCO) next PubTalk, the biggest of 2017, will take place Thursday, September 28th, 5 pm at McMenamins in Downtown Bend. This PubTalk will feature ten Bend Venture Conference (BVC) Early Stage semi-finalists competing, with audience input, for a spot on the BVC stage October 20th. Tickets for PubTalk are on sale now and available here.

The ten Early Stage semi-finalists were selected yesterday after a full-day of company pitches during BVC’s Upstart Day. Upstart Day is an annual part of the BVC process, where Early Stage companies are given the opportunity to pitch in front of experts and investors, while both being judged on the content of their pitch and receiving important feedback needed for advancing their ventures.

In alphabetical order, the Ten Early Stage semi-finalists (all from Central Oregon) advancing to compete at the September 28th PubTalk are:

  1. BladeRunner Energy – A micro-hydro technology based on biomimicry that harnesses renewable energy from the natural flow of water.
  2. kidcareshare – A social network for parent communities to instantly schedule and trade carpools, play dates and care.
  3. Mission Limelight – Empowers non-profits and commercial enterprises to maximize their marketing, fundraising and social impact.
  4. Ockam – A blockchain based platform to solve systemic security and interoperability problems in all IOT devices.
  5. Snappy Sitters – Matches reliable and capable sitters with busy families who have extremely high standards.
  6. Tread & Butter – Intentionally-designed cork insoles for sport, work and outdoors.
  7. Tribe Pilot – A social tool to plan outdoor adventure.
  8. Voilà – Specialty instant coffee from top US roasters, delivered monthly.
  9. Wildish – Makers of outdoorsy gear for outsidey people.
  10. Wingo – The first truly ergonomic cases for tablets and smartphones to alleviate pain, prevent injury, and substantially increase comfort.

As mentioned, these Early Stage semi-finalists will pitch against each other for a spot on the BVC stage. During PubTalk the audience vote, along with an expert panel, will determine the five companies that advance to BVC October 19-20, so attendance is key.

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

Since 2011, BendBroadband Business has sponsored the Early Stage competition. This year, the cash award has increased to an impressive $17,500 for the BVC Early Stage winner.

Hosted by EDCO, this year’s BVC will once again feature three competition categories: Growth Stage, Early Stage and Social Impact. Last year, nearly $4 million in funding was awarded to ten companies. The finalists for all three categories will be announced in the weeks leading up to the Bend Venture Conference, October 19-20, 2017.

PubTalk Agenda – Sept. 28
5:00 pm to 5:45 pm Networking
5:45 pm to 8:00 pm Early Stage semi-finalist presentations, voting & announcement of finalists

PubTalk Cost and Registration
$25 EDCO & OEN Members (Become a member here)
$35 Non-Members
Cost includes appetizers and a beverage (choice of beer, wine, or soda)

About Bend Venture Conference (BVC)
BVC, hosted by EDCO, is one of the largest angel conferences in the country. More than 600 attendees, six funds, 32 prominent investors, and 89 companies participated in 2016’s conference, where nearly $4 million was invested in 10 companies.

About Economic Development for Central Oregon (EDCO)
Economic Development for Central Oregon (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


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