#33USTour Food + Tech Pitch Competition – Austin Winners

IMG_0654

On Tuesday, Tech Ranch hosted French Accelerator, 33entrepreneurs, for the Austin stop of their #US33Tour.  The goal? To find top technology startups focusing on food, wine/spirits and travel. Nine companies competed for the chance to win an all-expenses paid trip to either the Bon Appetech or PhoCusWright conferences, after which, the top three will win equity investments and a three-month acceleration program at the 33entrepreneurs headquarters in Bordeaux. Check out the Austin winners below and follow the tour’s next stops in Bordeaux, Los Angeles and San Francisco!

[Read more…]

Tech Ranch and SARR Form JV Accelerator to Support Japanese Startups

SARR Tech Ranch 2

NEDO (New Energy and Industrial Technology Development) of Japan has selected the newly formed SARR-Tech Ranch joint venture as one of twelve certified “VC’s” to help commercialize and globalize Japanese technology startups. The highly competitive program assessed over 40 global applicants and the joint venture (with a physical location in Kyoto) was selected to receive support, which will in turn focus on the development of entrepreneurs and the building of bridges between the two countries. NEDO will commit $50M over the next 2 years to the VC’s chosen for the initiative. [Read more…]

What is a Convertible Note?

Convertible 3

What Is A Convertible Note?

Guest Blogger: R.C. Rondero de Mosier, MWR Legal

Convertible notes can be a challenging topic for both entrepreneurs and investors. Entrepreneurs seeking investors

often solicit convertible notes without knowing why they should use one. Likewise, many investors do not truly understand the convertible notes they are asked to sign. In this blog post I will describe convertible notes and explain how they work and when to use one.convertible 2

First, let’s define a convertible note. It’s called “Convertible” because it may convert into equity. “Note” refers to a document, often called a “promissory note,” that records a loan and its repayment terms. A convertible note is a document that reflects two different transactions: a grant of money in exchange for repayment terms, and the option to convert the loan principal and interest into stock in the company that accepts the grant. Pretty simple, right? Yes and no. [Read more…]

The TR Feed: Jacque’ Nowak, Independently Maid

Independently Maid

Jacque’ Nowak has brought a unique perspective to our current Venture Forth I class…she okay competing against herself! According to Jacque’, “I have been in the house cleaning business for over 30 years and have maid for youbeen noticing a shift in the way people want to do business. So after reading the book BOLD I was inspired to expand my business nationally, even if that means I disrupt my current business (Maid for You).”

Her story of disruption is one that is familiar across multiple industries. Some examples include the postal service and email, home phone service and mobile, taxi drivers and Uber…and in the house cleaning service industry it’ll be the act of taking out the middle man to make booking a maid service using technology reliable, safe and cost-effective.

[Read more…]

The TR Feed: Joi Chevalier, The Cook’s Nook

cooks-nook-shared-kitchen-austin

How do you develop a food product? Where does that happen? What team is necessary to make a food product successful? Cook's Nook 2

These are just some of the questions that Joi Chevalier of The Cook’s Nook is hoping to help food entrepreneurs answer. While planning her transition from technologist to culinary student, she noticed that the culinary industry did not have some of the basic talent development or product management practices so common in the tech field. According to Joi, “All of these questions kept coming back to missing pieces – repeatable methods and environments to create and produce regularly, along with the knowledge and influences to repeatedly engineer, productize, go to market and operationalize a successful business.”

[Read more…]

Exploring Tech Ranch Opportunities in the Middle East

20150610_105259

Last month, Sandeep (Tech Ranch General Partner) and Felora (Managing Director – Tech Ranch/Middle East), headed to the Middle East to explore opportunities for Tech Ranch expansion. They visited four different countries: Oman, Jordan, Qatar and Bahrain. While they did have a great time soaking in the culture they also made sure to get down to business by meeting with individuals across the education, government and business sectors.

Prior to the trip, we all focused on researching and exploring the needs of each country when it comes to entrepreneurial literacy and development. We haven’t yet narrowed down which countries we’ll end up landing in, or exactly what “Tech Ranch Middle East” will look like, but our team made fantastic progress toward answering those questions. Since we don’t have any big news yet…we’ll share some beautiful pictures from their trip and plan on keeping you all updated! [Read more…]

Texas and Tijuana Create Relationship to Promote Entrepreneurship

Tijuana 2

Read the full article in Frontera.InfoHow to make a pitch

This past week, Kevin Koym, Tech Ranch CEO, traveled down to MINDHub in Tijuana to help not only build additional bridges for Tech Ranch in Mexico but to help inspire entrepreneurship. He ran a multiple day workshop called “How to Make a Pitch” which guided individuals through our method of incubating a business idea. We wanted to share some of the pictures with you and encourage you to read/translate the full article above to learn more about this new international initiative!

About MINDHub: [Read more…]

Tech Ranch Mentor Event Success!

Mentor 1

While we have been working with our mentors for quite awhile, we haven’t been hosting official mentor events – until now! With a growing set of smart, successful mentors to help our entrepreneurs, we had to find a mentor 2fun way to give them the opportunity to get to know us. Our first event was a panel to introduce our participating mentors and a mentor speed dating session where choice entrepreneurs got to spend 15 minutes each with four different mentors.

Throughout the event we heard tons of good advice, deep conversations around different topics and offers to “follow-up” soon. In our eyes (and those of our attendees since we surveyed them :)) it was a resounding success! We want to give a special thank you to the mentors who participated: [Read more…]

BlogathonATX – Coming 9.26.15

Blogathon 1

Blogathon 2Written by: Evin Cooper

BlogathonATX is the premiere annual Austin-based blogging event and this fall, Blogathon will be taking over TechRanch for the 5th time. While some blogging conferences are considered stuffy or boring, Blogathon is anything but. With the best food of just about any conference in the country, the atmosphere is more social than l“business networking”. While networking is a top priority, it’s done in a laid back Austin style.

Ilene Haddad is the founder of BlogathonATX, (for which she received the Anne Durrum Robinson Creative Initiative Award) as well a a graphic designer, cartoonist, and blogger.  When asked why she hosts her event at TechRanch, she says “My vision for BlogathonATX was about much more than just content. The look and feel of the event was as important as the programming. I wanted a warm and inviting atmosphere with enough space for attendees to work and enjoy the day. One of the highlights of the venue is its flexibility. Every year we organize the rooms differently in order handle the ever-changing features presented at the conference. Tech Ranch’s layout allows for productive creativity without the formality of a typical office setting. And best of all, they allow us to bring in as much food from local vendors as we want! Try doing that in a hotel ballroom.” [Read more…]