Hackernoon logoLaunch Festival Highlights by@carsoncgibbons

Launch Festival Highlights

Carson Gibbons Hacker Noon profile picture

@carsoncgibbonsCarson Gibbons

Cosmic JS Co-Founder

My co-founder Tony Spiro and I got the opportunity to attend Launch Festival in San Francisco this last week. Launch took place at the beautiful Palace of Fine Arts and spanned the entire hangar with multiple stages, demo pits and meeting areas. We spent time interacting with co-founders and representatives in the demo pits as well as taking in Spotlight Sessions at the Scale Stage. The Festival Stage served as the main hall that showcased amazing speakers and panels in the lineup, which ranged from Angel Investors to Venture Capitalists to established Founders to Founders pitching their companies for the first time.

I’ve written this brief blog to highlight a couple of my key takeaways from the festival. In addition to highlights I’ve included photos from my personal camera reel, real-time tweets posted during sessions and more.

Investor Outlook Panel:
Gil Penchina, Flight.vc
Cyan Banister, FoundersFund
Ryan Feit, SeedInvest

Gil, Cyan and Ryan shared their investment histories, with Cyan transitioning from Angel to Venture Capitalist at FoundersFund and Ryan starting Seedinvest to begin the new age of equity crowdsourcing.

Investor Outlook Panel:
Hunter Walk, Homebrew
Megan Quinn, Spark Capital
Jalak Jobanputra, FuturePerfect VC

Hunter, Megan and Jalak discussed investment histories, equality within the Venture Capital Community as well as the future of deployable products within the VR / AR space given the number of headsets reported to be saturated into the market in the next 36 months. Megan discussed how she wished she could say that female equality within the VC world was on the rise, but with the 96 / 4 split between male and female upper leadership / partners within VCs, she was not optimistic. Jason posed this question to each of the panel members: “How long until there are 10 million daily active users that are using VR headsets to perform tasks?

Spotlight Panel:
Patrick Collison, Stripe

What a treat. Patrick Collison of Stripe discussed the formation of Stripe, his childhood growing up with his brother and co-founder John Collison in the countryside of Ireland, and the life events that led them to launch Stripe Atlas, a seamless service that lets global entrepreneurs easily set up a Delaware corporation online for only $500.

Spotlight Panel:
Sarah Tavel, Greylock Partners
“10 Lessons From Scaling Pinterest”

Sarah Tavel, formerly of Pinterest, shared her story of joining Pinterest when it had 30,000 registered users and growing that user base to 100 million monthly active users by focusing on their core metric: when a new user signs up, they need to pin something. The magic moment defined by Pinterest was not just signing up or browsing, but active engagement by pinning something of interest to them. Read her blog “Five More Lessons from Scaling Pinterest.

SaaStr Co-Selling Space + Sightseeing

We attended a Meetup at the SaaStr CoSelling Space in San Francisco and heard from several startups and companies, including Rallyware, a SaaS company dedicated to dynamic management of staff, resources and followers of cause-oriented campaigns. Rallyware CEO George Elfond led a discussion on scaling from $15K MRR to $150K MRR.

The floor was then open for startups to pitch, so Cosmic JS CEO Tony Spiro pitched API-first app development within the cloud using the Cosmic JS CMS API.

I also got a little bit of time to do some sightseeing, and folks, San Francisco doesn’t disappoint.

Carson Gibbons is the Co-Founder & CMO of Cosmic JS, an API-first Cloud-based Content Management Platform that decouples content from code, allowing devs to build slick apps and websites in any programming language they want.


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