April 3, 2024
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Startup Weekend returns to Santa Barbara


Santa Barbara is gearing up for its second-ever Startup Weekend with judges from some of the South Coast’s most successful technology ventures.

Technologists, designers and business minds will gather from Nov. 2-4 for a three-day blitz in which they will pitch, refine and present ideas for business startups. The event is drawn from a template provided by a national nonprofit, and organizer Kyle Ashby said this round will have a few non-tech startups and will focus on creativity and design, including a special design-oriented keynote on Saturday from Andreas Forsland, senior director of global creative for Citrix Online, the large Goleta-based software firm.

“We’re trying to do something two times a year to keep a steady stream of ideas coming out of Santa Barbara,” Ashby said. He said the event aims to “further build up the startup community. This is one of the pieces that’s definitely needed.”

This year’s judges include Michael Crandell, CEO of Rightscale, and Woody Rollins, chief financial officer of Eucalyptus Systems. Both cloud computing startups have raised tens of millions of dollars in venture capital in recent years.

Also judging will be Jacob Tell, head of Oniracom, a firm that handles the digital presence for music-industry heavyweights such as Jack Johnson, and West Coast Asset Management Chief Financial Officer Diana Pereira. Adding a civic angle, Santa Barbara Mayor Helene Schneider will also be a judge.

A who’s who of successful tech entrepreneurs will speak. The lineup includes Jim Semick, a market validation expert, Daryl Bernstein of Rightsignature, Citrix Online veteran and venture investor John Greathouse, Inogen co-fonder Ali Bauerlein and Commission Junction co-founder Lex Sisney.

The Friday evening pitch session, Saturday design keynote and Sunday evening presentations are open to the public. Visit http://santabarbara.startupweekend.org for more information.